What are the key tips for being a great intern?
Be enthusiastic, be willing to learn, and have an open mind to the entire situation. Don't gossip. Don't lie. Be truthful because lies will come back. Everybody will know if you tell a lie, even the smallest ones. Do your work and give it in on time or before. Before is always better, and make sure that your work is really good. If you make a mistake, apologize. Don't argue with anyone, and move on. Fix that mistake and let people know about the mistake early on. If someone is yelling at you because you screwed up, the worst thing that you can do is argue back. Accept the punishment and move on. A little sense of humor, a little fun, while this is really serious and while you might be working at a really serious company, if you are really serious all the time, people have to tell a joke or two. Come in with a smile. The other thing, and this sometimes is not always up to you but, if you can, try to get an office or cubicle or desk outside somebody's office who is big, such as outside the bosses office, or somewhere where a lot of people can see you. They can then hand you work even if you don't work for them directly. That is really key. The other thing is to hustle. You are there to work and you are there to work hard. Run around and do whatever you need to do. Do eight million things, and if you can handle it all you'll be great. You should be working. You should not be on Facebook or Myspace. If you are, it's okay, but work hard and break a sweat. You're not here to lie on the beach.
What are the social aspects of being an intern?
A lot of cities have a great intern culture especially during the summer and it's a great time when people come from almost around the world to intern and it might be different industries but you're all really in the same boat. A lot of times they live at dorms that are from local universities and they're all on the same floor and they intern with each other and then they party with each other. And there's a great sort of culture that occurs when you're an intern.
What if my college won't give me credit for an internship, or what if a credit is too expensive?
If your college doesn't give you credit for internships there are couple of things you can do. First, just go back to the college and try to finagle it. An internship just wants credit; they don't care how much credit. So you can maybe see if your college can work out a fourth of the credit. That won't even count really, but will count for the internship. If none of that works and if your college won't give you credit of if its too expensive to get credit a great way is to contact your local community college and usually for $100.00 - $200.00 you'll be able to get credit, no problem.
What's the secret of getting in good with my boss from the first day?
On the first day, it's great to have a meeting with your boss to plan out what you want to do for your internship, what your goals are, what do you want to do, and also, what your responsibilities are, what your boss thinks that you should be doing, when does he or she want you, when does your boss want you to arrive, what does your boss want you to wear, so forth and so on, just to lay out the basics on that first day, so that you know for the rest of the internship.
Is it OK to admit you don't know how to do something?
It is fantastic to admit that you don't know stuff because honestly, if you knew everything you'd be running the company by now. So, and this is great! Ask early on, some people are awful with names and then five weeks into their internship they're like "Oh, what's you name?". It's best to ask things earlier on in your internship - for the first two, three weeks "Oh, what's your name again?" "Oh, how do you do this again?". But write everything down so you don't forget, because you don't want to ask too many times and get really annoying about it.
What's the secret of getting in with the staffers?
The thing that I think is most important about an internship that I've learned from my previous internships is that things happen in the room. If you're not in the room things will not happen. I can't tell you how many times I've been somewhere, just because I'm there, and they say "We need someone to do something, oh, you're here - o.k. you get to do it." If you're not in that room, and if you're not at that place at that time - things happen partially by luck. But if you aren't good and if you're not in that room, things happen in the room. Get inside that room.
What's the secret for getting the best assignments?
Smile, be friendly, go out there. Don't be shy. Don't sit at your cubicle. Don't just sit there and wonder when the work is going to come to you, because the chances are that the work is probably not going to plop down. You have to go and find it and you have to be aggressive about it to a certain extent.