Congratulations! You have grabbed your first virtual internship on Internshala!
Your hard work has paid off. After clearing the assignments and/or interview, you have been finally hired as a virtual intern. You know the various advantages of being a remote intern and are understandably very excited for your internship to begin; however, there are some tricky aspects to working online that you should keep in mind. Since this could be your first experience as a virtual intern, here are some tips to help you on your way to make the most out of this internship:
1. The First week is really crucial:
- Establish proper communication with your mentor – clear all your doubts about the stipend, expected work hours, or the daily schedule.
- Convey your exam dates, semester breaks, any college fests which you will attend etc. beforehand so that your mentor can come up with a detailed work plan.
- Get acquainted with the tools like Skype, Google Docs, Dropbox etc. – you will be using them for the most part of your internship.
- Since e-mail would be your primary mode of communication, it is imperative you learn the art of effective e-mail writing. You can read this article for some valuable tips on e-mail writing. You can also join some online courses on Coursera or Udemy that will help you in the long run.
2. Ask for continuous feedback:
You only get limited guidance and mentoring in a virtual internship but don’t let that hamper your professional development during the internship. Send your mentor daily updates through e-mails and ask for her feedback regularly. You need to be patient too; your mentor may have lots on her plate and probably won’t be able to give the feedback right away.
3. Take an active part in team building activities:
As virtual internships take place outside of the workplace, there are generally few opportunities to get an insight into the working environment of the company. So, whenever there’s a team activity (virtual or physical) make sure that you participate actively and leave an impression on everyone’s mind. That way you can develop interpersonal relationships and strengthen your network.
4. Take initiatives:
If you just do what you have been told and keep waiting for the directions from your mentor for every new thing, there is only so much you will learn. Take initiatives and go that extra mile to leave a lasting impression. For instance, if you are hired to write articles for the company blog, you can also learn to create personalised cover images using Illustrator or suggest relevant Social Media campaigns. Similarly, if you come across a website with features which your company lacks, you can suggest those to your mentor.
5. Stay on top of the deadlines:
It’s harder to be on time in a virtual environment when you don’t have anyone constantly checking in with you. You need to be self-disciplined and motivated. Keep track of important dates and assignments in your personal calendar, along with maintaining a daily task list. Even if it’s a virtual internship, your goal should be to stand out as best as you can.
With a bit of planning and effort, a virtual internship can really boost your career. If you perform well, you can even convert it into an In-office position during your summer/winter break or after graduation.
Hope these tips are useful. We would love to hear if you could add anything to it from your experience; please comment below. :)
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