Sales Internships and Marketing and Social Media ones can change your future!
Bob Pritchard Blog | Internship
This is the time of year when college is out for the summer and millions of students are looking for sales internships, some paid and most unpaid.
Sales Internships are considered as the best way for college students to understand the realities of how business in general works, what is expected of them and how a particular industry may function, however, unfortunately, the job market is flat at best so many companies appear to see it simply as unpaid labor.
This often means learning little yet working hard.
College graduates still face a difficult job market: the unemployment rate for 20-24 year olds is around 15%, against the national average of 8%.
Or, Sales and Marketing Internships…
Getting an internship today is as hard as getting a job.
Literally dozens of students/graduates applying for every available internship, particularly paid ones. In order to get an opportunity for sales internships, hundreds of thousands of students take unpaid sales internships to gain the work experience.
Before you take an unpaid internship you need to consider the fact that it doesn’t pay, but you also need to consider how it may pay off in your future career. You need to identify ways that you can leverage the particular internship directly to have an impact on your career in the future, and if you can then you should jump at the opportunity.
However, not all unpaid sales internships are advantageous for you, so before joining a company as an unpaid intern you should identify what you want out of the work experience.
You should list what industries and job positions you are interested in for the future, then identify the companies in that space and look for internship opportunities that will provide you with the necessary experience in those fields.
If you have a colleague or a contact that works for any of those companies or in that space then talk to them about the experience that would be of most benefit to you.
Then you can speak to the prospective employer and determine if that internship will give you the right experience, contacts and skills that will be of benefit to you in the future.
Will the sales internships give you the credibility you need to get the ideal job you want on graduation?
Will it give you the contacts you need to leverage a position in the company where you are doing the internship or one of its competitors?
Don’t be afraid to speak candidly to the prospective employer.
It says a lot about your character, shows you are smart, have a strong personality and character. This can only be to your advantage.
Once you have narrowed in on an internship, you need to talk to your contact at the company and ensure that what you are seeking and what they are offering are on the same page.
You should take the initiative and work with the company’s Human Resources department to identify and document what work you will be doing, whether you will be working on a specific project, what value you will be adding to the employer and what training or skills will be developed during the internship.
There are many good things about unpaid sales internships.
Quality, unpaid sales internships in your prospective field can be a giant stepping stone in the cut throat business world where experience is often much more important than education.
The problem when you graduate school is that while you have some education, you have no real world experience and don’t have credibility in that particular industry. It is often said that depending on the industry it can take 1-2 years to transition from an academic environment to a business environment.
An unpaid or paid internship makes it easier and quicker for you to adapt, gives you an in with the company and invaluable experience in that industry.”
Whether you are taking a paid or unpaid internship…
….you need to work your butt off to be noticed, use every opportunity to make connections, grow your social and professional networks particularly in areas where you want to get a job in the future.
These are not just going to come to you, you need to be proactive and use every minute of the internship to advantage. Get out there, go to everything you can, socialize at lunch and after work, develop your network. Interact with as many people as possible, every contact opens the door to many more contacts, make every contact count.
If you can get an internship at one of the leading companies in the industry you want to work at when you leave college, you can really leverage this positioning. Having this experience with a market leader can assist you to get a job with that company when you leave college, or will add to your credibility if you go to a competitor.
At worst it will give you an advantage over many of the other graduates who may be applying for the same job later on.
When you go to send out your resume, companies will assume that you were selected for the internship based on your talent and skill set so let’s at least give them an interview.
Of course, many students can’t afford to take on unpaid sales internships or other types and that disadvantages their chances in the future. It may be worth getting a paid part time work job after hours so that even if you have to struggle to survive for three months, you can take that unpaid internship as it may well be worth it in the end.
In this case it is even more important to ensure you know exactly what the job entails and the opportunities presented. You don’t want to be filing and getting no industry experience for 3 months.
It is your life, don’t hesitate to ask the company precisely what skills am I going to develop, who will be supervising me, is there any opportunity to rotate around several departments, will I have someone senior as my supervisor?
Ask the company to introduce you to some of last years intake of employees so you can learn first hand the most appropriate and opportunistic things to do.
Will there be regular meetings so I can monitor my progress and have someone listen to my comments.
Do not take on unpaid sales internships, or any other internship believing that the company will take you on as a full-time employee when you graduate, it does happen, but not regularly.
So, unpaid sales internships with a good company that undertakes to really teach you the ropes, to assist you to develop your career is invaluable…..but try to be paid if you can.
That makes the sales internships that much more fun.
Bob Pritchard “the business leaders advisor”
- CEO of Marketforce One Ltd.,
- Marketing Director for Publishing & Broadcasting Limited (PBL)
- Chief Executive Officer of Sportsplay Television Limited
- Bob hosts The Bob Pritchard Business Radio Show
- Chief Executive Officer of The Sydney Football Club
- Global Ambassador for Kidney Health
- Winner of the ”International Marketer of the Year”
- Marketing Director for the Inaugural Formula One in Australia
Sales Internships and Marketing and Social Media Internships can change your future!