Prior to onboarding as an intern with PHOS Creative, I was a college senior majoring in Biology.
After nearly finishing my undergraduate studies in Biology, I realized my true passion was not found in swirling test tubes. Rather, it was in something strategic and creative. That’s how I found myself at PHOS as a digital marketing intern.
If you’re someone who is skimming this article to figure out if they should apply for an internship at PHOS, you may be wondering how this applies to you. On the other hand, you may be someone who far along in their career and has no interest in ever becoming a PHOS intern.
While I may be an intern, the lessons I’ve learned during my time at PHOS are applicable for any professional. Here are five principles that I have learned during my time with PHOS that will help you exceed during and beyond the internship program.
Lesson 1: Steady Work Ethic is the Foundation for Success
We’re all familiar with the importance of working hard. If you listen to the stories of countless entrepreneurs from around the world, you’ll notice that most of them had humble beginnings. Personally, I listen to the How I Built This podcast to get my fill of inspiration.
Many successful CEOs weren’t the ones you would have voted “most likely to succeed” in high school. However, what they did have was a passion and an insane work ethic that was way above their peers.
The true test of work ethic begins when you receive countless rejections, when your boss doesn’t recognize your hard work, or when you haven’t been inspired in ages. You must be willing to give your full effort for the long haul.
We are not all superhuman and people have days where they want to quit because sustaining a fast pace can be difficult. However, if you press on and work hard, I promise that you will have a breakthrough.
Lesson 2: Be Humble Yet Tenacious
You may wonder how it’s possible to be humble and extremely persistent at the same time. The one way this happens is when you fight for what you believe in.
Be willing to raise your voice about your ideas and the things that inspire you. And amidst that passion and drive, you must be willing to realize that every idea you pitch forward won’t be received. This is where humility comes into play.
On the other hand, your perfect idea can sometimes be dismissed during a meeting. When it feels as though you have been rejected, it can be hard to recover. That’s when you need to be tenacious. While you still should go forward and pitch ideas with vigor, it’s crucial to be humble enough to know when to step back.
Lesson 3: Don’t Forget to Be Human
No matter how accomplished you may become in your career, don’t forget your humanity. If there was only one principle that I would have you take away from this article, it would be this.
I have worked in a variety of industries throughout my career so far, and I’ve noticed that people enjoy being treated like people. At the heart of every customer-service prompt and hiring ploy is the idea that people would like to be treated as more than a number. People want to be treated like human beings.
Don’t forget that mentality as you enter into an internship. The timeline might be short at any work experience, and the workload may take some extra effort on occasion. However, if you forget to see that your coworkers, employees, and clients are people who seek to be appreciated as actual human beings, things won’t be easy.
Lesson 4: Keep It Seriously Simple
KISS is a simple way to Be a Light no matter what industry you work in. If you aren’t familiar with the acronym, KISS (Keep it Seriously Simple), is a strategy that anyone can apply to their daily interactions — whether it’s personal or professional.
I’m sure you know how rare it is to leave someone a voicemail requesting a return phone call and for them to call back in a timely fashion. People are so hard to get a hold of and this can make even the smallest of tasks hard to complete.
Whether you run a lawn mowing service, work at a day spa, or are interning at PHOS, keep it simple by:
- Stick to your deadlines: Whether they are personal or shared, hold yourself accountable.
- Manage expectations: By establishing and managing expectations early on in the process, you automatically save yourself a lot of headaches.
- Break the silence: Good communication and transparency is the best policy. Let someone know if you need more time on a project or time to push a deadline.
Lesson 5: Be a Leader (Even When You’re Not in Charge)
The first book recommended to me when I arrived at PHOS was How to Lead When You’re Not in Charge by Clay Scroggins. The ability to display leadership qualities despite the circumstances is valuable at any organization – especially at PHOS since it’s one of our core values.
We get asked all the time is what makes an intern at PHOS successful. Simply put, a successful intern is someone who is willing and eager to showcase leadership in every task. Whether they are pitching a brand new campaign to a client, leading the initiative to implement a new marketing strategy, or refilling the candy bowl in the lobby, leadership can be exhibited in all internship duties at PHOS. A true leader sees the void, no matter the size, and is willing to fill it.
To Wrap This Internship Curriculum
We have walked through quite a bit of material in this article. Be sure to take a moment to reflect on these five lessons and actively put them to practice. Believe me, you will have no issue succeeding as an intern at PHOS and in your career if you manage to do that.
Do you think you have what it takes to join the PHOS team as an intern? Take a look at our internship page to learn about the opportunities we offer.