Editor’s Note: At YouTern, we present a wide range of resources and career industry experts – even if their opinion differs from ours – so you can make the most educated, informed career decisions. In this post, we provide a “counter-point” by YouTern contributor Allison Cheston to our “I Want You to Quit Your Internship!”. So the internship of your dreams has turned out to be nightmarish—and you are counting the minutes until you can jump ship. Jealous of your friends working for enlightened bosses who are mentoring them while you spend your evenings lamenting your plight and wondering what
If you’re in the midst of an internship, or even if you haven’t yet gotten one under your belt, you’re most likely thinking about the value it can bring as you move toward your career. In an interview I gave about internships today, I was asked the question “Should you go for the big name internship, or should you focus more on how much you will learn?” It’s a great question, and the answer depends on your career goals. Are You Interested in a Specific Professional Track? If you want to be a banker, a lawyer or a management consultant,
In my interviews with young professionals for my upcoming book, “In the Driver’s Seat”, I’ve heard people say that mentoring is more important to them than getting paid. To illustrate, Jamie Farrell wrote a blog post suggesting that Gen Y’s will gladly take a pay cut in exchange for great mentoring, because they value the long-term career building opportunity over the short-term gain of more pay. This point gets to the heart of what this generation really wants: great experience, great tutelage and the opportunity to have a “sponsor”—someone who can open key doors and really help build their career.
Your parents may have told you that you are a gift of the gods but the truth is, when it comes to your early days in the work world… nobody cares. And if you think you’re going to cruise through any aspect of your career based on your charm or some ill-guided sense of entitlement, you are dead wrong. It doesn’t matter just that you show up—they don’t really need you—there are many more intern candidates out there just like you. You have to be motivated to come in, be humble and helpful and see if you can learn something
Professional associations are not on the radar of most interns or young professionals. In fact, they weren’t on mine until a number of years ago, when I went to work for one. When I became Chief Marketing Officer for the Association of Executive Search Consultants (www.aesc.org), I learned all about professional associations and what it meant to belong to one. And now I encourage everyone, at every stage of their career, to join one. Evaluate the Field As an intern, you may not be sure of whether you will be a long-term member of a particular field, but that
First of all, don’t panic; there are still internships available – and with some preparation and some energy, you can still grab a high-quality summer internship—maybe one of those posted right here on YouTern. Think Flexible Already exhausted the possibilities in your field of interest? Try branching out a bit further – and consider doing something a bit unrelated. This could be an opportunity to try something new—you never know what will spark a new career idea. Examples may include Social Media, research positions or business development—all of which come with highly marketable soft skills that transfer back to