1. Do your homework before your first day.
By being prepared, you will feel more confident going into the internship. Start your first day with a general understanding of the industry, its buzzwords, the company, and your boss. This will make you sound more knowledgeable and confident.
2. Dress for success. In general, dressing and acting professionally not only gives a good impression and makes it clear that you’re willing to make an effort, it can be psychologically beneficial.
3. Treat the internship like a real job. If you want the employer to take you seriously, you need to take the job seriously. “To get the most of an internship, regardless of the pay, interns should treat their internship like they would any job. You need to remember that your work will have an impact on the organization. You’re learning in an active, real-world environment, so your contributions (and your mistakes) affect other people.
4. Have a “just in case” outfit in your desk drawer. Always have a tie or pair of heels at your desk because you never know when you need to make a last minute outfit change for a meeting or work event.
5. Practice good time management. Interns have a lot on their plates, so it’s important to be organized, be careful not to take on too much, and to let someone know if you can’t complete a project by the deadline.
6. Socialize (with a filter). Since you’re treating this position like a permanent job, you’ll want to take the time to get to know your new colleagues. It’s great for interns to get to know one another — and their superiors — but be careful of the amount of personal information you share and how you behave while socializing.
7. Ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and step outside your comfort zone. This shows that you’re willing to learn and have a genuine interest in the job and company.
8. Be flexible. People, and organizations, have different thinking and communication styles and various ways of doing things. If you can learn to be adaptive, you’ll broaden your opportunities considerably.
9. Network. Aside from socializing, you’ll want to network with your new colleagues. The more colleagues know you and what your capable of, the more support you will have once it’s time to turn your internship into a full-time job.
10. Find a mentor. While it may seem intimidating, interns should ask their boss or someone they admire in the company out to lunch to learn about their experience at the company and ask for any words of wisdom.
11. Take initiative, but accept guidance. Volunteer, within reason. Employers will be impressed if you’re eager to help — but don’t simply sign up for everything. A few jobs done well is better than twice as many done badly, or not finished.
You are ultimately there to learn from more experienced individuals. Be sure what you’re doing each day is in line with the organization’s priorities,”
12. Be respectful, but assertive. Interns should expect to both be taken out of their comfort zone and to do boring but necessary tasks with good grace, However, if you feel you’re being taken advantage of, you must speak up.
13. Challenge yourself. Try to challenge yourself by doing something you have never done before, Utilize your coworkers and bosses to learn and develop your industry skills. These skills will enrich your professional portfolio making you more appealing to future employers.
14. Keep tabs on your accomplishments. For the benefit of future job applications, immediately begin keeping track of specific facts and figures about your performance.
15. Ask for feedback. As an intern, you may not have a formal review until the end of the summer — so it’s important to ask for feedback on a regular basis, This shows the employer you’re taking initiative and willing to make the changes necessary in order to succeed.