The working world is a jungle, and the intern is at the bottom of the food chain.
For high school graduates and college goers, internships are the first step in the work-life. While it is a common belief that landing a great internship should be the end of your worries, you must know that the end of your search for an internship placement is the beginning of a new set of problems.
As you are new to everything during the internship, you face many challenges. There are chances that you can complete your internship smoothly but there can also be a time when you cannot escape the challenges.
However, this shouldn’t leave you panicking because we got you!
We have found some of the internship problems and their solutions to help you navigate through it all. Whether you have landed that internship job, are about to, or preparing to apply, this blog will serve as a guide for you.
As surprising as it may sound to some people, this could pose one of the top internship problems. You expect you’d be given loads of tasks, but there isn't enough work assigned to you. Thus, you're bored, underutilized, strumming your fingers at your desk, and tempted to browse social media.
The easiest way to solve this internship problem is by asking your senior employees if you can help with their projects.
Another smart tactic is striking a conversation with the seniors about their role in the office. As an intern, you are there to learn about the profession, and if they have a conscience, they will comply. Once you’ve got them talking about their work, try to see where you could fit in. Maybe by voicing things aloud, they will be inspired to get you on board one of their longer-term projects.
Because interns are just glad to get a foot in the door, some workplaces may take advantage of young workers by giving them long hours of dull, repetitive work. You get tired and exhausted at the end of every day, and it gradually affects your internship experience.
Being new at work can be overwhelming, especially if it’s a new workplace with new faces and unfamiliar jobs.
Keep your long-term career goals in mind to make your internship feel worth the effort.
Give yourself some time, be patient with yourself, and understand it will take some time to get used to everything. Try hard for a week or two and see if you can manage, but if the pressure and work are too much and if it is taking a toll on your mental or physical health, talk to your mentor or someone who can help. Make sure you have a healthy mind and body.
This internship problem can be heartbreaking. People often do well in their fields of work and other places to be recognized. The motivation to do well dies when the recognition doesn’t come. It is the same in internships too.
There are times when you're given a project that you finally feel will make use of your college education, but it ends up never getting published or lost in their desks or the project being scrapped totally. Not only is this frustrating because of your seemingly wasted time and effort, but it makes you less motivated for projects in the future.
If you are in this position right now, keep in mind that hard work doesn’t go neglected for a long time. Try not to look at it as wasted time and effort. Instead, see it as a resume/experience booster and maintain a list of the tasks and projects you’ve accomplished during your time as an intern. Writing them down will help you remember what experiences you’ve had and give you the sense of completion you need to push on.
It takes time to understand the organizational culture since it varies from office to office. While some have a rigid structure, others are flexible and trying to observe organizational structure during the first weeks of socializing poses a challenge for many. Based on your observation of the prevailing culture, you can decide to be friendly or reserved in your conduct.
Whether you are starting a new position at your current place of employment or a completely new company, you may be experiencing the fear of the unknown. However, it’s imperative to recognize cultural differences at work; that way, colleagues can avoid taking a simple misunderstanding to heart.
You must stay calm and have the attitude that you will perform your best and, by doing so, you will impress.
If you're not the only intern working at a company, you might experience a competitive environment. Often, it’s not that your co-interns are competitive and trying to outdo you but they're just being hardworking and high-spirited. So instead of taking it for granted, try to work harder as your competition will make your internship much better.
At this stage of your career, the most important quality you can have is to be open-minded, drama-free, and easy to work with. It's okay if you aren't the smartest and fastest worker or the ruthlessly ambitious worker. People will want to work with you because you're enjoyable to work with and have a good attitude.
We recommend you participate in the competition and work towards doing great work every day. You’ll find that you learn more than you would have without the competition and this will enrich your internship experience.
The environment at each office, organization, and company is different. As an intern, you have to work with different challenges, goals, and work cultures. During the initial days, most interns get nervous working in such an unfriendly environment and are unable to continue their internships while others are unable to perform to the best of their ability. However, it will become easy and manageable if you already know the challenges, difficulties, and problems you're about to face.