4 Ways to Stand Out at Your Summer Internship

by Haley Davidson

You made it to New York City! Now what? Time to settle in and enjoy your summer internship.

You’ve probably been waiting for this opportunity for months, if not years. Make sure that you take advantage of being in the city and working for an incredible company.

Show up, on time

What often sets individuals apart is simply the ability to show up on time. Everyone will have a day or two when subway construction is simply not in their favor, but overall, you should take steps to ensure that you are at the office when you’re supposed to be.

From one New Yorker to another: always assume that your commute will take 5-10 minutes longer than your phone or map says it will. Trains are regularly delayed because of sick passengers or signal malfunctions, but if you anticipate delays you will still be able to get to your office on time.

On weekday mornings, trains are often crowded. You may have to wait for a couple of trains to pass by before you can fit on. Once you hit the sidewalk, you will also have to face throngs of tourists if it’s a nice day outside or other rushing employees.

You’ll learn to anticipate obstacles to your morning commute, but that takes time. Learn the quickest path to the office and plan ahead, and you will stand out as someone that is reliable and timely.

Remember: It is better to be 10 minutes early than 5 minutes late.

Get to know your office

You’re not just interning to learn new skills and enjoy a different work environment–though those are important aspects of your summer, too! Don’t forget to take time to get to know the people that make up your internship. Whether that’s fellow interns or your supervisor, you won’t regret building relationships in your office.

Your fellow interns could become your best friends in the city. Go on adventures after work together or help each other with difficult projects. Ask your supervisor to coffee at least once, too. They have valuable experience about their industry and career path to offer and you could learn a lot from a thirty minute coffee break.

Have a positive attitude

Be a fun person to work with. Instead of complaining about difficult new projects, embrace the challenge. View every task or duty as something to learn from, whether it’s writing your one thousandth tweet or even getting coffee for the office. If you complete the small things with a cheerful attitude and excellent hand, you will be trusted with bigger tasks eventually.

Remember that you are in your office to learn, to absorb information, and to discover if this is an industry you want to devote the rest of your career too. Don’t take yourself too seriously and try to enjoy the most menial and repetitive of tasks.

Ask good questions

Be curious about the work you’re doing. Learn about how your company works and why they do things the way they do. If you’re told to design something a certain way or write copy a certain way, ask why. Be respectful–your supervisor probably always knows best–but show that you are engaged with the work you’re doing.

With these four tips, you can stand out at your summer internship. Be intentional with your time and attitude, and you will succeed.