Asking for bigger challenges
By Colleen Sabatino, The Intern Coach
Your interest in taking on more responsibility should generate better assignments; plus, you’ll learn more new skills. And when you finish your internship, you’re sure to receive rave recommendations. Here’s how to ask for more challenges at your internship:
- Make sure you’ve done a great job on the assignments that you’ve completed. Can you document that you’ve finished all your responsibilities ahead of time and exceeded expectations? Your ability to demonstrate why you should have more challenges impresses your boss. He/she will know you take your internship seriously and want to add value to the company.
- Be careful not to belittle any efforts by other interns or even co-workers who may be performing the same tasks as you. Choose your language carefully when your boss asks why you want more responsibility. Instead of using words like “boring,” or “repetitive” to describe your dissatisfaction with your assignments, explain that you want to do more to develop your skills and to help the company reach its goals. You may even add that you’re willing to continue your original assignments but want more challenging work in the company, even if it means working longer hours.
- Do some research before you approach your boss. In other words, be careful what you ask for because you might get it. You can ensure that your new tasks will be ones that you’ll enjoy if you have participated in selecting them. Also, you’ll be much more successful if you pick fresh challenges that showcase your talents. If you’re excellent at research, ask if you can work on a research project. If you’re a computer whiz, suggest an assignment in that area. Prepare a brief report, outlining potential new challenges along with goals and timelines. How can your boss say no?
Blog Post: Sabatino, Colleen. [Internet]. 2014. Asking for bigger challenges. Available from http://www.internships.com/student/resources/workplace/common-situations-and-questions/asking-for-bigger-challenges.
What you can do during a visit to the Center for Career & Life Planning? A quick trip to the career services website will familiarize you with the wide variety of programs and services available through the CCLP – but did you know that Rollins Alumni have access to services for life?
This article from The Proactive Professional digs deeper into career development strategies and offers tips on optimizing your time with career development staff members.
I often hear complaints from new college graduates that career services didn’t get them a job. Something many students don’t understand is that career development centers are not placement organizations. Career services professionals are there to help provide you with the tools to figure out what you want to do professionally and how to best market yourself for the job search. With that being said, here are my top tips for effectively utilizing the career services offered at your university.
Keep in mind: career service professionals are not there to give you a job or place you in a job.
Consider this: if you wanted to get married in the next few years, would you really want a dating service to handpick your future spouse, or even give you a half dozen to choose from? Perhaps that sounds better than going out on dozens of blinds dates, but really think it through. Before you can have a successful relationship, you must have a deep understanding of who you are (your likes, dislikes, needs, deal breakers, future goals, etc.) as well as the necessary tools to make a relationship great (trust, open communication, intimacy, etc.).
In the same way, career development offices are here to help you figure out the kinds of careers you’re interested in based on your values, interests, and personality and how to pursue those careers.
Think about what you’d like to get from your meeting before the appointment.
Many times, I’ve had students come in and ask for their resumes to be critiqued. Twenty minutes later, they admit that they’re unsure of their major or feel they need practice interviewing. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having several needs, but it will make easier for everyone if you consider what those needs are before heading into your career coaching session. We don’t always realize we have more than one issue and that’s completely fine. If you can, though, consider how you’d like your career adviser to help and what areas you feel need the most attention.
Realize that career development is a process…Read more.
Blog Post: [Internet]. June 2013. Top 5 Tips for Utilizing Your University’s Career Services–from a Career Coach. Available from http://theproactiveprofessional.com/2013/06/20/top-5-tips-for-utilizing-your-universitys-career-services-from-a-career-coach/ .
One of the main concerns that plagues most college students’ minds is “How do I prepare myself for an interview?” Sometimes you have plenty of time to prepare a pitch and practice your interviewee skills, but other times you receive notice so quickly that your interview is right around the corner! What do you do now?! Never fear, there are plenty of ways and resources that can aid in your quick turnaround, specifically the one I have highlighted for you this week. In the blog posting below, you can learn how to quickly and effectively improve your communication skills in time for a short-notice interview. So take a look and get moving!
How to improve communication skills in time for an interview
Posted on Experience by Simplicity by Veronica C.
As the number of college graduate jobs begins to grow, so too does the quality of potential applicants. With competition heating up, it’s worth your time to work on a highly overlooked skill: communication. Practice these tips to improve your abilities in the interviewing environment and land your first job.
Don’t talk over people
It’s hard sometimes when you’re in a conversation to not talk over the other person. What’s being discussed could be very exciting or thought-provoking, and you just want an opportunity to contribute. Before you know it, you start blurting out your thoughts before your partner is done speaking. Now imagine you did that in an interview with a recruiter. Unfortunately, it’s a real problem that people have on a daily basis. It may be unintentional, but it’s still very to interrupt someone when they’re talking, even if they’re asking you a question. By talking over them you’re conveying a sense of apathy for what they’re telling or asking you. You make it seem like what you have to say is far more significant. Next time you’re in a conversation with someone, make a conscious effort to pause and let them finish their thought before contributing. By the time your first interviews come around, you’ll be a well-oiled polite machine.
Ask more questions
At its core, a significant conversation…Read more…
Blog Post: C., V. [Internet]. April 2014. How to improve communication skills in time for an interview. Available from http://www.experience.com/entry-level-jobs/news/how-to-improve-communication-skills-in-time-for-an-interview/
It’s that time again when everyone has survived Add/Drop week and they’re finally settling into the new fall semester with high hopes for the year to come. With this being my last and final year at Rollins College, I have set out to make this year count and make it my best year as of yet. That being said, there are so many ways that could make this year count for more than the others. How, you ask? By setting out to do things differently, and by that, I mean taking initiative. How does one do so? By doing some research (ugh.) and taking on new projects (eek!). I recently came across this short blog posting about “creating a leadership role for yourself at school” and I snagged it here for you all to read.
It sounds terrifying, I know, but by partaking of the array of advantages and opportunities that Rollins provides, it allows us to graduate saying, “Hey, I can put that on my resume.” Be honest. Is your resume sitting there pitifully on your desk with a huge white (or eggshell, if you got fancy with it) gap on it from lack of involvement/experience/internships?? Well, these tips can help inspire you to make this year better than the last and prepare you for your future post-Rollins life. Now, don’t get me wrong, as a senior I’m taking the last little sliver I have left to create something bigger, but that doesn’t mean this advice is strictly for upperclassmen. No, no, no. The earlier you begin, the faster you can begin the next thing, and the next. And you’ll soon discover that this is how Rollins works. Everyone is always synchronously moving along to next big thing, whether that is running for a Student Government position or hosting a booth outside of the Campus Center. Everything here matters and it takes an army (or just a bunch or Rollins students) to do them. Are you motivated, yet? Well, if you aren’t, then I have just the thing for you. A BuzzFeed Quiz! So take the quiz, have a laugh, and get on out there.
Blog Post: C., V. [Internet]. 2014. Creating a leadership role for yourself at school. Available from http://www.experience.com/entry-level-jobs/news/creating-a-leadership-role-for-yourself-at-school/ .
We all know how much fun social media can be. There’s Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and so many more that we use on a daily basis. We check our newsfeeds religiously and tweet every stray thought that we think the world may want to know. Well, I’m here to tell you how important it is to build your online reputation, the right way. A funny picture or a random comment here and there seems harmless, right? Wrong. Everything you do on social media affects the way in which you build your personal brand. It’s easy to say that these are your college years, that you’re expected to make mistakes, and that you don’t have to start getting serious until after you graduate. But all of these statements would be wrong. Your impact on social media leaves a digital footprint and without the tact and mindfulness that everyone should use when posting, future employers and recruiters are less likely to take sympathy on you for “being in your college years.”
There are so many ways that you can brand yourself prior to that daunting interview or before you hand over that impressive resume that you have worked so hard to establish. The infographic featured below provides helpful tips and surprising statistics on how using social media can contribute or detract from your personal brand. Take a look and discover what you may have been overlooking when using social media.
Infographic: Festa, L.M. [Internet]. 2013. Building Your Online Reputation. Available from http://visual.ly/building-your-online-reputation.
Having reviewed student and alumni resumes for several years, we have seen some pretty interesting resume blunders. We found an article on Recruiting Blogs by Jade Hadden this summer that we found pretty funny and thought you might enjoy it as well…and perhaps find helpful. Enjoy!
35 Of The Funniest Things Found On A Resume
The resume is an integral part of the employment process, as you’re tasked with the unenviable job of fitting your entire professional life into two (or at a push, three) pages in the hope of impressing your potential employer.
However, the pressure of getting your foot in your prospective workplace’s door can often be more trouble than it’s worth; with many job seekers unsure just how much detail they need to share with their future boss.
But by focusing their efforts into being a dream employee, usually results in the form of a nightmare resume. Use these disadvantaged skills to your advantage, and join us as we laugh (and cry) at some of the funniest blunders that have made their way onto a resume:
- I often use a laptap.
- Failed bar exam with relatively high grades.
- Fluent in English. Also I have been heard muttering Gibberish in my sleep.
- Qualifications: “I have extensive experience with foreign accents.”
- Experience: “My father is a computer programmer, so I have 15 years of computer experience.”
- Objective: “To become Overlord of the Galaxy!”
- Accomplishments: “Brought in a balloon artist to entertain the team.”
- Reason for leaving last job: “Bounty hunting was outlawed in my state.”
- References: “Bill, Tom, Eric. But I don’t know their phone numbers.”
- Special skills: “I’ve got a Ph.D. in human feelings.”
- Skills: “I have technical skills that will take your breath away.”
- “Marital status: often. Children: various.”
We speak a lot about skill development, transferable skills and how to list both, hard and soft skills, on your resume. Just how important are soft skills and how do employers rate them? Take a look at the infographic below provided by the National Association of Colleges and Employers for a quick overview.