After a rousing welcome from InterGlobe Enterprises in their head office, we were sent to our companies for induction. I was one of the three interns working with InterGlobe’s technology division. There was when I meet my mentor- who very glad to see us in typical MBA attire!
When my mentor first spelt out the details of my project- I was extremely confused. It took me three to four hearings to understand what the project was and another two days to understand what exactly I had to do! My project title was “Proof of Concept (POC) Model: The next generation Airline Loyalty Program for Low Cost Carriers”. The project had three key identifiers. First was creating a proof of concept second was designing an airline loyalty program and the third one was my target group- low cost carriers. As you might have correctly guessed the project required me to do a lot of secondary research on all the three concepts.
The work required, however, was not as difficult as deciphering the project title. I quickly adapted to the culture of InterGlobe Technologies. An extremely friendly atmosphere wherein you call everyone with their first names, an open door policy meaning you can approach the senior management easily and a flat hierarchy where the cabins of General Managers were beside my cubicle, making me feel as an integral part of the organisation.
To tell more on the project, I proceeded first with an absolutely exploratory research just sitting in front of my desktop doing nothing but using search engines to get accustomed to the terminologies used in the project title. After a couple of days- which also included brainstorming sessions with my mentor- I actually got a knack of things. I drafted a day to day timeline so as to complete the deliverable a week in advance and prepare for final presentation.
Initially I had thought that two months of deskjob sitting in an AC office for 8 hours a day is going to be boring and monotonous. But how wrong was I! In the course of my primary survey for the customer side of Low Cost Carriers, I floated a questionnaire online, did a primary survey, took 20 personal interviews. Since I had to keep the survey global and focus on customer behaviour outside India too, I had to conduct my research across Europe and Americas, other than Asia. I could connect to Geneva (and hence the European markets) using my good friend who was interning there. She connected me to her friends in Geneva who gave me some really crucial insights which I could not have gathered sitting in Gurgaon. Skype did come handy even in connecting to Boston, where in I took help of my uncle in conducting a survey relevant to the US.
Post the two week long survey- I had to spend one week in collating data and analysing it. I got some really useful trends which helped me formulate the next generation strategy for low cost carriers. Those were geography specific as American markets are much different from European ones. Post analysis and pre-formulating the value proposition, I connected with a lot of Business Analysts from InterGlobe Technologies who had written white papers on various topics relating to customer behaviour, loyalty program, low cost carriers, social loyalty etc. The inputs were very crucial for the final model which I developed. We had a mid-term review wherein I stated my value proposition, and getting full support from my mentor I continued my research.
I realised that what I was formulating was like a baby to me. It was my own creation. After spending hours on excel, formulating the value generated through my proposition, I came up with the final solution in about 6 weeks. One week for making the presentation, refining and a preliminary round and I was ready to present it in the last week of May. The entire HR council of InterGlobe was present- including our sister concerns such as IndiGo, ITQ, InterGlobe Hotels etc. Presenting in front of such a prestigious panel was indeed an honour and an excellent experience! It was the culmination of my efforts over the past 8 weeks! Post my presentation- I realized that my journey had come to an end. I had mixed emotions- sad that that would be the last day of my SIP, but happy that over the past 8 weeks I had gained a lot of knowledge that would help me in not only in completing MBA but in my future life as well. I made some really good friends who were interns and interacted with a number of seniors in the company- one of whom I even met in my short vacation back home in Mumbai.
My greatest learning was the ability to make a monotonous looking assignment into an interactive one. I tried to break all geographic boundaries and sitting at a desk in Gurgaon, got a first-hand view of customer behaviour in Europe and North America. Quickly getting acculturated to company- which was my first experience in an IT company- gave me enough reasons to seriously consider working in an I.T company in the future.
Overall, I had an unforgettable 2 months with InterGlobe, which included a new government, a new Prime Minister in Delhi (I lived in South Delhi) and a new “loyalty program for low cost carriers”- my baby!