6 things I learned during my internship

11 Oct 2015

Working in a company that is so tight-knit and fast paced has definitely made me learnt and grown in a short period of time. The culture is such fast paced that people actually run with 5 inches heels in office because time is of the essence! Throughout the period, I constantly reflect on what I've learned, I got to say I'm glad to see how much I've grown. So, I decided to share my personal development here, hope it's beneficial to others as well.  Here are a few things that I've learned:

1. Independence
This is one huge leap for me. I never leave home, my university was just right on town, so I never had to leave for college. This was my first time leaving home and it was likely the first time that I was away from family and friends for an extended period. It turned out to be the best time for me to be independent. During the six months, I no longer have my mom to wake me up for work or prompt me to do house chores. I also don't have breakfast prepared when I wake up nor dinner prepared after work. All the things that once I have my mom prepared for me have to be done all by myself. It was indeed a big change that carries with a big responsibility

2. Go for the extra mile
Being a junior, don't be afraid of doing extra work or tasks that are beyond your job scope. Not just for the sake of demonstrating your ability that you can do more but you will also learn something new from it. Be proactive, take the initiative to volunteer yourself to carry out projects and don't be afraid to bring creative ideas to the table. You are supposed to be there to learn so don't be afraid to make mistakes. I always looked for new ideas to contribute and proposed to my manager. As we have limited resources to allocate to projects so that force me to think out of the box in order to make my ideas into reality. Somehow I found that it keeps me passionate in the my job.

3. Lend a hand
It's normal that people do things that only benefit themselves and just don't give a shit if you do not have something to offer. In fact, you have nothing to lose if you offer your assistance. While the saying goes, "Nice guys finish last," you might fear of losing your time, effort or even money, the truth is your act of kindness actually brings opportunity for self-advancement. Not to mention, helping your colleagues shows you're a good team player too. Furthermore, providing assistance to your fellow coworkers can be one of the best, mutually beneficial ways to network. At the end of the day, your boss will notice all of your hard work and your trait of being helpful (which is a plus point).

4. Prioritize
Knowing how to prioritize tasks is vital. You are going to face this when your workload is piled up, everything seems to be urgent, feeling overwhelm and you do not know where to start. The thing is, everybody is going to tell you their task is important but you have to tackle your work by priority. ALWAYS ask for the deadlines of the tasks given and write it down on your notebook/ sticky notes in case you forgot. I always do that so that I managed to hit the deadlines. At the same time, be flexible with changing priorities to be able to prioritize effectively.

5. Welcoming feedback
Being the best isn't about knowing the most. When one believes he knows it all, he is also shutting down himself from learning and improving. Most of the time, we only want to listen to positive feedback because we are humans, we longed to be acknowledged, accepted and appreciated. Negative feedback doesn't necessary mean we are not good, or some people see it as a threat and reacted defensively. It simply means we're not good enough as we are and also reminds us that we have rooms for improvement, we need to change for the better. In fact, receiving feedback is all about managing the emotions stir up in you so that you can take in other's opinion and ideas with an open mind.

6. Take pride in your doings

It's good to be humble but it's totally okay to take pride in what you do after all the hard work and hours you have devoted to the project and finally see it blossom. No matter how trivial your job it is, be proud of yourself that you have accomplished it. It's fine that you talk a little about your accomplishment or things that you have done, this doesn't mean you are boasting about yourself, see it as a sharing instead. I was too shy to share or talk about what I have done until my manager mentioned it to me when I asked her for feedback. But now, I had learned to take ownership in my doings, realize that when I am driven by that, I am more passionate and will bring out the best in me. 

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