Being an intern …
Prompted to write this after hearing back from one of my clients, let’s call him John. John wants to get into a very competitive field, working in film and TV ultimately as a producer/ director. It’s going to be tough and he knows this. There are so many people who want to do this sort of work that he has to look for ways to enhance his CV and that means working for free to begin with. Not ideal, but without some effective work experience he stands little no chance of getting the work he wants.
If you are seeking work as an intern there are sites which advertise opportunities, both paid and unpaid. These include Graduate Talent Pool and Wexo and these are both short and longer term assignments.
You will still find yourself in a competitive market place so you can still be even more proactive and identify companies that you would like to work for and approach them direct. That’s what John did. We’d already had a couple of sessions discussing what he wanted to do, and his options for getting there, revising his CV and creating a brilliant letter to send to companies. We then drew up a list of companies that he could approach, initially by letter and then in a fact finding (informational)  interview.
I was delighted to hear that John had been successful in getting a 3 month internship with a film company – it’s a great length, time to get some significant work experience, and this should really enhance his chance of getting a paid job.
With an internship there’s a need to make sure that you get the best out of your experience. This includes discussing your objectives at the start, getting feedback on how you are doing. Making contacts and gathering testimonials. LinkedIn can be brilliant for this. Of course you have to be careful not to be too pushy, but you don’t want to look back on this in a few months time and realise that you didn’t make the best of your opportunity. It’s also worth gathering examples of what you have done which you can use as part of a personal portfolio when you start applying for paid work.
John is one of a number of people I’ve helped get great internships, and they aren’t just young graduates. Unpaid work experience can also be a brilliant way to segue into a new career when you realise you have lost your passion for your old job and must find something new.
Can I help? Don’t hesitate to get in touch  

Published On: March 29th, 2010 / Categories: Students and Graduates / Tags: , , , /

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