So, I was inspired to write this little piece for all the strong, young women who are empowering themselves by taking on the role of working girl. After combing through all of my favorite blog sites, I just could not find the perfect one to send my best friend who happens to be starting her first day of a pretty serious internship tomorrow. Although I do not have an abundance of experience (still only 20 LOL), I do have a bit of wisdom from a previous internship and even from a bit of what I started to date this summer.
What to Wear:
LOL yes this is how I am starting my "lovely advice." Of course, you are going to work to do just that, work. Yet, if you are anything like I am, those first day jitters manifest themselves into the aspects of your position that matter, but are not the reason you have the job. You found this opportunity and were granted the position of entering the working world because of your mind, your attitude, and your character. Without your hard work, you would not be eligible to start and be a contributor for the company of which you are about to become a crucial component—whether you realize it or not. Yes, if you are working in fashion, wear that piece you have been saving for this day; if you are in business, wear that fitted suit and skirt even if you feel like a 40-year-old hag; and if you are in fitness, wear that cropped sports bra to show off your abs. My only advice is to wear something that is comfortable and that you do not have to adjust. There is nothing more awkward than standing in front of your boss and trying to slyly pull down your skirt then have them ask if you have to use the bathroom because it looks like you are about to piss yourself. Look in the mirror and remember it's not about what is on the outside, it is about what you bring to the table from the inside out.
Befriend Your Superior:
Something that I learned very early on was that it is important to foster a great relationship with your immediate superior from day 1. The best jobs have the best bosses. This is when being a listener is key. Impressing the big boss is great but you also must be extremely careful not to step on the toes of those closest to you. Not that it happened to me but at times I have felt strained or unable to talk to the person directly above me, leading me not to ask the right questions and make mistakes. An internship is a chance to learn so take it and ask every question you may have. It is better to ask a few more questions at the beginning and do it right the first time than to completely re do a project. At the end of the day, you are working toward the same goal and are truly making everything a bit easier for everyone else while learning as an intern.
Going to Lunch:
Everyone has had that moment in time when they are extremely hungry and do not know either A) when they can eat lunch B) who they are going to sit with. From personal experience, this is the ONE TIME I recommend to follow the crowd. Usually, someone will let you know or another intern will get up and go. Just in case, pack a Larabar or a little treat to hold you over.
When in doubt, smile.
There will be times when you feel out of place, or feel like this isn’t the best job for you, but when in doubt, smile. This helps you move forward and take a breather without focusing on the negative. The expression “fake it 'til you make it” most definitely applies to those tough days of work when you feel like it is too much to handle. First smile, then don’t be afraid to ask questions. The best opportunity to learn is by asking questions. If anyone makes you feel out of place, screw ‘em! After work you have great friends and family to tell all about your first day. Happiness is contagious and if you are positive, it emulates.
I am sending my love with all of my heart. You are being the change you wish to see the world by taking the opportunity to become a part of the female workforce. If anything goes wrong, just remember, you’re there to learn. Sometimes it may seem grueling, sometimes it may seem overwhelming, yet remember you put your best foot forward. Don’t forget to celebrate the end of a good day with a glass of wine—or two. Hell, if it’s a bad day have three but no more than that because you don’t want to ruin tomorrow.