in-demand skills of 2021

How to get the most of out of your Internship?

How to get the most out of your Internship?

Perusing an internship while studying in Spain as an undergraduate or a master’s student can be extremely fruitful. However, securing an internship at a company of your choice takes a lot of hard work and planning. There is virtually no difference between getting hired as an intern as opposed to a full-time employee as far as the hiring process is concerned. At LEAP, we work with several international students and help then secure internships while they are pursuing their degrees in Science, Commerce or Humanities.

Once you secure an internship then to make the most of it is in your hands so we recommend these 11 tips for you to get the most out of your internship experience in Spain.

Set tangible goals

Not all companies have a well-defined internship program. It is not uncommon to be hired for an internship where the goals are not well documented. This doesn’t mean that you will not learn anything during the internship or the company is not good. However, this does make it difficult for you and your boss to truly judge your performance. If you find that your new employer does not have set goals documented it is a good idea to sit with him/her to know what is expected out of you. By setting specific goals with your boss, you’ll gain structure and meaning for your internship while avoiding confusion.

Here are some points may want to discuss with your employer:

  • The specific outcomes your boss requires from the project
  • The specific areas or projects your employer needs help with
  • How you can seek help & guidance during your time there
  • Where to find resources and answers on your own when possible
  • How your employer will deliver feedback on your performance
  • How to communicate about official deadlines, delays and other project related updates

 

Observe

During your time in office, keep your eyes and ears open. Observe your colleagues when they present at meetings, talk to others, send out emails. You can learn a lot by watching them. This will help you understand the norms of the office and avoid faux pas.

Make new connections

This is the best time to start networking. If you haven’t already got an active Linkedin account, this would be the time to sign up for one. Network in office with your fellow colleagues, these are the people who will become your professional contacts and possible mentors. Connect with them virtually on LinkedIn (including your boss) share relevant content on your page to help your new colleagues get an insight into you. Also, your new designation will help you connect with a bunch of people working for companies similar to yours. So, don’t miss out on connecting with them too.

Not sure how to network over LinkedIn? Well, here is a great video by Professor Heather Austin that gives you a step-by-step guide.

 Alternatively, you can also refer to this LinkedIn Guide  published by Fatima Aboudrar

Identify a mentor

A mentor is someone who can guide you through your internship and help you network and come across other learning opportunities. This person will not always be your boss. Your immediate boss might or might not have the time to mentor you but if you talk to enough people around the office you will be able to identify a suitable mentor. Your mentor will show you the way but not hand hold you. You can trust him for an honest feedback and for information that will help you complete your tasks.

Asking someone to be your mentor might not be the easiest thing to do. Once you have identified the person you think can mentor you, tell him/her, “I am eager to learn and make the most of this opportunity. Will it be possible for you to mentor me during my time here?”

Select someone you admire and has the skills or traits you wish to develop. Not everyone has the time or patience to mentor, so if the person declines, it is ok. You can consider asking them if they have recommendations for another mentor.

If you want to read up more about finding the right mentor, read this article by Jeff Goins on ‘How to find a mentor in 10 not so easy steps.

Go the extra mile

This one is not just for interns but for all of us. Don’t just finish tasks, go the extra mile. See what else can be done or if there is other ways you can contribute.

Whenever a task is assigned or a certain deadline is shared follow through, every single time. If you won’t be able to meet the deadline or you see the task being delayed for any reason, communicate that with your boss. Explain why the delay has taken place in the first place and how you will prioritize the task.

Over time, by successfully completing your assigned tasks and by proactively involving yourself in activities, you will steadily gain a reputation for being dependable.

Volunteer every time

If there is any project that could use an extra hand don’t hesitate to volunteer. Internship programs are rarely that intense that you can’t spare time for a little extra. Collaborating with your colleagues on projects will help you learn vital skills and give you the perfect opportunity to network. During your internship, seek out opportunities to practice collaboration. Here are some examples of how to go about that

Ask Questions & Be Curious

Your first couple of days and weeks may include on-boarding sessions and training. Take advantage of any training time offered to ask questions and learn new skills. If there isn’t any formal training, find new sources of information on your own. This is a rare opportunity to understand how an organization works inside and out. It is up to you to make the most of your internship so make sure you put in as many hours as you can learning and understanding.

Document Projects & Communicate

Whether you are working with a team or solo it is critical that you document your project and build a road map right at the onset of the task. This will help you understand all the moving pieces. What information you might need, if you would require any assistance from your colleagues so on and so forth.

By doing this exercise you will be able to plan better and avoid surprises. This will also help you reach out to resources well in advance, giving them adequate time to plan their schedule.

If you are holding a meeting, clearly define the agenda and share it with other members upfront. If you are attending a meeting without an agenda ask the organizer if you need to prepare something beforehand. There is nothing worse than being unprepared for a meeting or having members join in to a meeting unaware of what is expected out of them.

Keep a journal to track experience

Over the course of your internship, make a habit of writing in a journal so you can recall ideas, learnings and accomplishments.

You’ll want to keep track of the details of your accomplishments, especially any metrics and numbers that can make your success tangible. Whether daily or weekly, these notes will be especially useful when you are updating your resume.

Be positive

Internships just like full-time jobs can get stressful. You will be learning new skills in a new environment at a place where everyone seems self-sufficient. Sometimes, it may get a bit daunting and self-doubt can creep in.

Here are few ways to remain positive

  • While documenting your journal focus on both the highs and the lows.
  • Talk to your colleagues, whenever you have the free time. Ask them about their internship experience.
  • Stay healthy
  • Don’t over analyse
  • Seek regular feedback

Take ownership of mistakes

No one expects you to be perfect from Day 1. You will make mistakes and it is ok to do so. In fact, it is part of the learning curve. The important thing is to admit to it and take responsibility. Take ownership, communicate with the concerned people and look for solutions. This will help you stand out and be recognized.

Stay connected

Not every internship will result in a job offer right away. If the company and work you’ve done are of interest to you, it’s a good practice to stay in touch so that when an opportunity does open up, you will be top of mind.

You may want to send regular updates to the people you worked with closely. For example, if you’re working on a school or personal project related to your internship, you could send a note with the details. You can also invite your former colleagues to coffee. This is a great way to share your ambitions, learn what’s new with them and ask questions.

If you have any questions about Universities in Spain and the job and placement scenario you can get in touch with us at [email protected]

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Anna Gegenfurtner
Anna Gegenfurtner
08:33 31 Jan 21
Very good company! They take time for each student and try to get the best out of everyone. ???
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Thank you so much LEAP! I could not have done it without you. The bureaucracy of Spanish public universities is... overwhelming and they reply only in Spanish. The leap team has helped me to manage all the paperwork and legalization processes in time and get acceptance for my master. Looking forward to start the program!read more
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Thank you Tom Miessen and LEAP team!! From the perspective of a parent of a future student in Spain, I can say without... hesitation LEAP has been the key my daughter needed to unlock her Spanish undergraduate education dreams. I admit I was skeptical of many things at first, but Tom patiently explained everything. Even in these uncharted COVID times, LEAP was able to keep the beacon shining! Without LEAP we would have been absolutely lost. As a humble suggestion to the parents of those moving ahead with their dreams of study in Spain, let your young adult do everything. It can be frustrating to want to jump in and help, but over this time of planning and action we have seen our daughter mature greatly and overcome difficulties that will no doubt help prepare her for this part of her journey in life.read more
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A young and professional team, that helped me a lot for my arrival in Spain. Clear communication and explanations of... the different solutions. Always available to answer my questions. Happy to recommend them!read more
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Best student consultant in Spain are Leap Consultants, they helped me a lot in getting Admission in Spain ?? They are... really professionals. Mr. TOM is very hardworking and devoted person. I happy with service of leap, really thankful to Leap for helping me out Best wishes & Regards Mussadiqread more
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LEAP GEC is the best company I have ever had an opportunity to interact with. They have an amazing team as well as... unique prospects for students and job-seekers. Because of them, I am proud to be a student of one of the leading universities in Spain. The best thing about LEAP GEC is that they treat everyone not just with respect, but they also care about their clients. If you need the trusted source to help you out with the job or to get into institution for further studies, LEAP GEC has to be on your "priority list" and you can contact them anytime and from anywhere in the world!read more
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I got in contact with LEAP late August not expecting much from my consult, however after sitting down and talking with... them about wanting to go to Spain and my personal situations, they quickly and effectively were able to give me a personalized plan/proposal with what my study in Spain would look like. Any obstacle I faced they were always a quick text away and readily available with a realistic solution or an alternative. After receiving my proposal I immediately decided to start working with them, a month later I received my visa and was on my way to Spain. The process was quick and not as difficult because I was working with them. Honestly this experience would not be possible for me without their assistance and guidance every step of the way. Thank you!! :)read more
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I had been researching study abroad for college on my own for about a year with little luck, but when I found LEAP, I... finally made a breakthrough. They worked with my budget, helped me with documentation and helped me get accepted to a great school in Barcelona. Their services are effective and affordable. I would 100% recommend LEAP to anyone looking for an education in Spain.read more
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I was struggling to find the right study program for business in Spain because there is so much choice and Leap made... the study options transparent and the admission process super easy and structured. And the best part is, they didn't charge me a cent for the admission service!read more
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I entered in contact with LEAP in December, 2019. I needed to arrange appointments, sheets and documentation for my... transfer to Barcelona. In a very short time, they provided me a good service. I managed to get everything I need. except for green NIE. After all, I felt satisfied and I would recommend it.read more
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LEAP’s services are totally worth it and highly recommended. They have been amazing by helping me throughout the whole... process, supporting and explaining me all the steps to get my NIE and Social Security Number done in time. I also want to underline the extra effort they made to accomodate as much as possible my requests when getting the NIE appointment. They have always been not only competent but also kind and patient with me. I couldn’t have done it so smoothly by myself, thank you!read more
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