Archive for August 16th, 2012

Real World Preparation

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

Anyone who has ever been on a job interview will tell you, one of the first questions an interviewer will ask is; “What kind of experience have you had that has prepared you for the position?”

If you are a recent college graduate and aspire to be employed (for example) as a financial analyst for  a growing international company like this one, will you be able to say …”Yes, thank you for asking. The two summers, while in college, working for Bain & Company in Boston inspired my decision to work for a company that has strong growth potential not only in the North American market but internationally as well.”

Having already done research into the company to which you seek employment, you go on to say…”I earned my BA in International Business with an emphasis on economic policy. I am also fluent in both German and Mandarin Chinese, countries in which you do business. The work I did in a collaborative team environment was to analyze the financial reports of companies to determine the areas of strength and weaknesses. We then would make proposals to make the necessary changes to replace the weaknesses with vital improvements for the short and long term.”

Or will you be saying to a future employer, (because you did not take advantage of any substantive internships during college) “Well, I managed the Trading Post Snack Bar at Camp Tip-A-Canoe in Vermont for two summers. At the end of the summer I  showed a profit of at least $94.25 from the sale of all the cookies and candy sold to the campers.”

Listen up! It is not too late. There is good news for the current undergraduate here. Internships provide short-term practical experience for students and recent graduates. They may be located anywhere in the world. Check with you college career services office. In fact, a college student should know what that office does starting in the freshman year. Though many internships will be done in the summer following the junior year, the ambitious student will research and apply for one before the end of the sophomore year.

Take a look at what one enterprising student did. She saw a need and filled it! She is now known as the Intern Queen. Learn from her. By the way, you can probably guess what her personality archetype is, can’t you?

According to a recent survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, employers reported that, on average, more that 3 out of 5 hires had internship experience. Many employers hire directly from their internship programs.

Career counselors, books, and other resources can be helpful in the application and interview process. In fact, if you are an undergraduate or even out of college and still not sure the direction you wish to take, call us at (978) 820-1295. Let’s discuss the options that will save you time and aggravation.