The value of internships and how it can help your business

by | Jun 27, 2017 | Company Culture, Resources and tips

Entering the working world for the first time can be quite scary. It feels like you’re a little chick taking its first steps in the world. Everything is new and you feel quite out of place. But like any new experience, you begin to adapt, gain insight and learn from the ups and downs. My experience as an intern at Lulalend is something that I would not trade for anything. In the short time that I’ve been here, I have learned many new things. I now have a firm grasp of the digital and FinTech space, and my digital marketing skills have been taken to new heights.

  What I took out of it
Time management is a big deal when you start working. Gone are the days when there was a teacher or lecturer to remind you of looming due dates and to hold your hand when you didn’t understand something.

Even as an intern, I was given a lot of responsibility and I realized that I had to take it seriously. In the beginning, I felt like I was losing track of all the deadlines. It took me some time to plan properly. This meant creating sub-tasks for bigger tasks and giving each sub-task a due date. I also noted important due dates in my Google Calendar so I would get reminders the day before something was due. I learned that if I need help, all I have to do is ask. My manager was very forthcoming and made it very clear from the get-go that I shouldn’t be afraid to ask for assistance and that if I wanted to learn a new skill, she could teach me. She always explained things well and in detail if I needed some elaboration. Before I started this internship, I didn’t know how to use online tools like WordPress, Hootsuite and Leadsquared, and now I can use their functions effectively to get my message across.

Many companies view interns as someone who’s just there to do menial tasks like make coffee and print out documents, but Lulalend took the meaning of an intern and turned it into something quite valuable: a learning intensive internship designed to teach the individual important skills that they can apply directly to their job. I was treated as a normal employee and not someone that’s way down the bottom of the hierarchy. Lulalend gave me the flexibility to find my way on my own, while my manager still offered constructive criticism that helped me improve my writing and digital marketing abilities.

Internships can aid career growth

As a young person, I believe that internships can be a good stepping stone to get to where you really want to be some day. The advantage of an internship, is that you get to learn on the job, and you are not expected to know anything high level; all that should be taught to you during the internship and you should also use the time to work on developing your own skills according to the career path that you have chosen.

How do companies benefit from hiring interns?

A business can reap a lot of benefits from having an internship program. If you’re a small business, chances are that you cannot necessarily afford to hire full-time employees. Hiring interns allows you to take advantage of short-term support around your office or business. This extra set of hands can help your other employees to be more productive and prevent them from experiencing a burnout. Internships are also helpful when you have a temporary high backlog of work coming in. After the internship ends, you can decide whether you have enough resources to keep the individual on permanently and whether they would add value to your organization in the long term. I feel that my writing skills have added value to Lulalend, in the same way that working at Lulalend has benefited me. For instance, I wrote informative blogs for the restaurant, manufacturing and beauty industries. I also marketed effectively through our social media platform.

What was it like working at Lulalend?

Lulalend is a great place to work. The open space, relaxed environment is conducive to productivity and creativity and gives you the freedom to do your job without anyone looking over your shoulder. Of course, it’s still important that you are aware of what’s expected of you and realise that you need to fulfill all your duties and adhere to deadlines, and above all, produce quality work that will help the growth of the organization. I found that everyone at Lulalend was friendly and so easy to talk to and I made some long-lasting friendships and connections.  The capabilities that I learned as a digital marketer will hopefully play a big role in helping me build my career step by step.

Lessons learned

You have to work hard to achieve desired results. If you want to be successful, it won’t fall into your lap. You need to put in the effort and learn from your mistakes in order get to a place where you feel like you have gained value from your internship. My experience at Lulalend has allowed me to tune into my strengths and weaknesses, and find out what I needed to improve on to take my career to the next level.

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