Depending on the company that you are interning for, you could be offered a job, you could be on probation pending the deliverables that you achieved, or it could be that you are just interning and then you will exit and find a role outside of that business.

All three are options. But obviously your goal is to get a job. 

 

1. Think through your letter(s) of recommendation

 

One of the things to be thinking about is how you are going to exit the internship. Instead of it just being an end, you should think about arranging for a recommendation. Whom do you want to write a letter of recommendation? What do you want them to say about you and your work? 

One idea is for you to prepare that letter yourself, give it to your manager or the person who will write that letter, and get them to edit it. It’s obviously a lot easier for you to craft what you want them to say about you. 

 

2. Always say 'thank you’

 

Always remember to say thank you. You may want to bring on your last day, or your last week, gifts, or food, or another acknowledgment. You also probably want to write an email to your manager thanking them for the time, the care, and the effort put into training you to ensure that you were successful during your internship.

 

3. Recognize your colleagues and their work

 

As a junior member of the team, you owe colleagues a debt of gratitude for welcoming you and giving you much of their time. No matter if you got along well or not with them, make sure they hear your recognition, during either meetings, informal chats, or lunches. By doing so you'll show everyone you are appreciative and a team player. 

 

4. Ask for introductions

 

You might also want to ask about introductions. Whom could you meet, in terms of future contacts who are in your field of expertise?

 

5. Always speak highly of your experience

 

Whether you liked your internship or not, whether you got what you wanted out of it or not, always speak highly of the business and your manager on every occasion, so that there is a positive spin. Nobody likes to hire anyone who complains about the manager, or the work, or the company where he or she has been working. Always spin your experience positively, because that will help you land a job more quickly. 

 

6. Seek referrals

 

After you have asked for that letter of recommendation, another element that you can do is go up to some senior people in the business and say ‘Do you mind if I use you as a reference?’ You have to ask for their permission first, before giving out their contact details. You can do that personally before you leave or you can have their contact information and as you go on on the job front you already have permission to engage them; it won't be new news or a surprise. 

 

7. Talk to human resources (HR)

 

You also want to talk to human resources. They’re the ones who have a lot of information and know about your internship programme and job openings, so make sure to spend time in developing a relationship with HR. HR is about training and development; it’s about ensuring there is hiring as well as staffing. The more you know about HR and those open positions, it will help you figure out who the manager is for an open position and you can create a relationship through them. 

 

8. Interact with other functional teams

 

Every exchange or interaction within the walls of the business counts and, again, it is about perception. Relationships are built over time. Remember, too, that recommendations can come from different functional groups. It is never too early to start building relationships with people who may not be in your team. You may find that your skillet aligns better with a different aspect of the business than that in which you interned.

 

 

This video is a free excerpt from the online course "Get the Most Out of Your China Internship"

The course covers all the do's and dont's for how to have a successful internship in China. It can make the difference between getting hired or not getting hired at the end of your internship. Highly reccommended.
 

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