I still remember going into my interview with Larry, our CIO and he asked me: “What is it that you want to get out of this internship?” I wasn’t quite sure how to respond, after all, I had just been introduced to the concept of inbound marketing. I didn’t know what to expect, or whether I would find enough interest in the field to pursue a career.
Larry’s plan involved giving me a taste of everything inbound marketing had to offer and preparing me for a career in the field, not just giving me paperwork to file. Here are 5 of my key takeaways as an inbound marketing intern:
- Time management skills are vital.
I never thought I would be organized to the point of actually using my phone’s calendar to keep appointments. I hadn’t had a problem before and didn’t think I’d have one then, however, having to work meetings around different people’s schedules, and having different due dates for different projects quickly taught me otherwise. You have to learn to manage your time and prepare to meet different deadlines. Sometimes you’ll get 2 weeks’ notice, others, you’ll be pulling a project off in a few hours. I cannot count the number of times a simple phone reminder has saved me from missing an important deadline.
- A ROWE work environment does not have to sacrifice an exciting and contagious work culture.
One of the things I look forward to the most in the week is our agency meeting. Besides talking about business, we talk about personal success stories and take time to review our company goals and values. It is the happiest, most contagious work culture I have ever experienced, and most of our communication is virtual. It goes to show you how a great company to work for doesn’t need to meet in an office 9-5.
Part of keeping that culture and timeliness comes from great communication. As Larry told me when I first started, “I’d rather you communicate too much, than not enough.” He was completely right, we stay informed of what others are doing, talk to each other about projects, ask questions, and keep our sense of a team extremely strong. I know that whether it is through an email, phone call, text, or Google hangout, I can always find a way to ask for help when I need it.
Great teamwork is built on great communication, because if one of us were to drop the ball it would affect us all. Our great communication and the solid foundation that has been set in our company culture helps us thrive as a team. The level of trust is incredible, and even if one of us were to fall behind, everyone is always ready to help him/her catch back up. Speaking of trust…
A ROWE work environment takes a lot of trust in your team members. What surprised me the most when I first began, was the trust I was given. The privilege to work on different client projects, to help within the agency with events such as InboundPHX was incredible for me. It gave me real-world experience in the field and gave me a great understanding of what this field was all about, ultimately giving me the interest to pursue a career here; something that I wouldn’t have been interested in if all I was given to do was busy work.
Choosing an internship can be a daunting task for any soon-to-be or recent graduate. I strongly recommend you look to find a company that is willing to invest as much in you, as you are in them. With some searching and a bit of luck, you can find a company that you can contribute to and help make a difference in, all while they help you grow in your professional career.