Internships are widely considered to be the initial stepping stone to a bright and vibrant career, and they should be taken as seriously as a part- or full-time job so that you can use them to your best advantage. Before you start a new internship, however, there are 3 things you should know, and they are listed below.
Familiarize yourself with the company’s mission and office culture. If you did not get a chance to ask a lot of questions in the interview (“What does a normal day in the office typically look like?” is a good question that will impress interviewers and give you a clear picture of your future workplace), now is the time to take a look at their website, promotional materials, and any news articles concerning the company. Knowing what is happening in the company shows dedication and will help you navigate your day-to-day responsibilities.
During the course of your research on the company and its values and goals, make sure to look up any information you can on appropriate workplace dress codes. If you cannot find the dress code online, or if you were not given an employee handbook to look through when you were accepted for the internship, check out photos of employees in promotional materials released by the company and in any news articles you can find that picture current or recent employees; emulate their style, if not necessarily creating a carbon copy of their wardrobe. If even that information is unavailable, the classic standby of a suit or blazer that fits well – and is clean and unwrinkled – is the safest bet.
Learn your commute before your first day, so that you can time how long it takes to get from your home to your workplace and adjust your commute accordingly. If you are driving a personal car, familiarize yourself with the best routes and take a test drive at the hours you would normally be driving during the workweek. If you are taking public transit, download or print off timetables for any bus routes, train lines, or tram lines you would feasibly be taking, and allot time for yourself to walk to and from the stops or stations both at home and at work. Being late on your first day offers an unprofessional first impression and sets the tone for your time with the company.
Be realistic with yourself when taking a position, and be prepared to give it your all. This opportunity could open up many doors for you.