Every year prospective candidates for the job markets get the opportunity to have a feel of what really happens in the job place. These college/university students enter various companies as interns for three months or less.
Before the actual start of the internship, there is a normal adrenaline rush and anticipation. Many just can’t wait to get started. But are they ready?
I believe being accepted as an intern in any institution is almost like raising your employability rate by 50%. Here is why:
Entering a company as an intern offers you the chance to learn from the job. You will all too soon realize when you enter an institution, especially here in Ghana that there’s a big disconnect between what you learn in the lecture rooms and what actually takes place on the job.
So being there at that material moment is a way of learning what you will actually be called upon to do when you’re eventually employed.
Another reason an internship period raises your rate of employment by 50% is the network you build whiles there.
This network helps you in the eventual course of job hunting. If you don’t get the chance to get a job (where you had done your internship) people you have met there are surely your best referrals.
However, the most important element in making yourself market ready is you. Yes you!
Everything about you during the internship period either say you will get a job or otherwise. Employers first look at their pool of interns when a vacancy is in sight.
But there are some obvious traits they capitalize on before that decision to give you a contract.
Your attitude towards work is a key trait. Whether you know what you are asked to do or not, the attitude you show clearly tells if you are a good material or not.
Punctuality is another trait, do you report to work when you are asked to or do you have a schedule of your own?
Employers want to work with people who are punctual. People who approach their work with time consciousness and not those who have no notion of time. As they say ‘time is money’.
Taking initiatives is another good trait employers will capitalize on. Whether you have a specific instruction to execute a task or you are just being ignored, identifying what you can do and requesting to be assigned such a task is big plus in your favour.
The ability to work under pressure is another trait an employer will consider when deciding to give you the nod. Sometimes the tasks you are asked to execute is very demanding and you are probably under resourced to do it.
However, being composed and level headed during such stressful moments give a clear signal that you are good material. Employers know when you are under pressure, but because they want results they sometimes feign ignorance of your predicament. So it is important you handle stress well.
A very good friend of mine used to say “you can’t sit on a bench and score a goal, the best way to show how good you are is being in the game”.
This very quote has always been my guideline in approaching whatever task I am called upon to execute.
Give the very best of yourself whenever you are called upon. Consider every assignment as an opportunity to engrain yourself in the good book of your boss.
You are as good as you make yourself to be. Therefore promoting you as a brand is key to get that job and it starts with you being an intern.
Written by Dovlo Emefa Ike