While you're in high school or college, a summer internship is a great way to gain some professional experience and have something to put on your resume. However, while internships are quickly becoming a norm for students and new job seekers, not every internship results in a job offer. Entering an internship under this false assumption would be foolhardy. Instead, consider an internship an opportunity to make yourself indispensable. Prove that you are not only ready for a full time position, but also deserving of it. Here are five tips for turning your summer internship into a possible job offer:
1. Ask questions
Remember that an internship is a learning experience. Since you're brand new to the workforce, odds are you'll have lots of questions and be unsure of how to approach certain tasks. Rather than waste time trying to figure it out on your own, take opportunities to learn from your superiors. This practice will also help you demonstrate engagement in the position and learn the ins and outs of the business. Make sure to take notes that you can refer back to as well.
2. Show off your professionalism
In the professional world, it's often easy to separate an intern from the rest of the workers. Many students are accustomed to a relaxed work environment, informal dress code and (in some cases) showing up hungover. However, approaching your internship with a laid back attitude can potentially suggest to your employer that you're not ready to take on more responsibility. It's important to act as if the internship is a full time position and convey professionalism. To do so, follow the same dress code as the rest of the employees, use proper business etiquette in the workplace and adhere to the expected office hours.
This is something you should be doing throughout the entirety of your internship. Rather than try to connect with everyone on your last day, meet people through the duration of your time with the company. Always use a professional tone and interact with people with which you don't work directly. Also take the time to network with other interns. Remember that even if there's not a full time position available for you with the company after your internship ends, the connections you make may recommend you for another position or pass on their praise.
4. Choose an internship with potential
It's easy to say yes to the first internship that comes along, but consider how the program is structured before you dive in. Some companies may only offer temporary student internships on a rotating basis without having any real intention of hiring on anyone full time. Consider as well if the place you are interning is somewhere you can actually see yourself working afterward.
5. Keep in touch
If your internship ends and a position isn't available at the time, don't get discouraged. Getting offered a full time position after an internship can sometimes be nothing more than a matter of timing. Be persistent and keep in contact with people from the company to stay abreast of any positions that open up. Furthermore, staying in contact helps ensure that if there is an opening, hiring managers may already have you in mind. To stay in touch, make sure you find appropriate and professional ways of asking for contact information near the end of your internship. Moreover, this gives you an opportunity to send your coworkers and employers thank you notes once your internship has come to a close.