1. Show curiosity. Each person in your office has something to teach. If you’re in good graces with your supervisor, ask if you can put in some unpaid overtime shadowing a different member of the company: Maybe spend an hour with the web designer, or sit in (silently) on a call with a major client. You’re there to learn, and your boss will appreciate you for it. Plus, you’ll get a nice break from the endless 9-to-5 excel spreadsheeting/researching/coffee running.
2. Don’t waste so much time. You’re in the home stretch, which means you’re comfortable enough to stalk kimye on Instagram during work. Everyone needs a break, but make sure you’re putting in the same effort you did on day one. And, if you’re going to waste time, at least do it productively. My favorite intern distractions: practice coding or solve some real-world challenges.
3. Check your goals. When you found out you landed your internship, what were your expectations? To better understand your field? To secure a job offer? Even if you didn’t have concrete goals at the start, evaluate where you stand now and where you need to go.
4. Stop apologizing excessively. We all saw that viral Pantene commercial. Someone should do a spoof about interns: I apologize for coming in 2 minutes late, I apologize for taking a coffee break, and I apologize for knocking my own computer socket out of the wall (who even knew that was possible). Saying sorry might start bugging those around you. In most cases, they didn’t even notice. Don’t say anything, fix what’s wrong and move on.
5. Create a tangible asset. A wise CEO once told me: “Write a report, presentation, spreadsheet, video, website or SOMETHING that you could point to and say ‘I did that’. It will help you in the future when you’re interviewing.” Start brainstorming, propose an idea to your supervisor and make it happen.
6. Stop and smell the free coffee. You worked your butt off to get where you are, so don’t forget to appreciate these few months. Every internship has its ups and downs, but chances are, you’ll never have this experience again.