Taking the Call: It’s Your Story

So, I’m sitting in the office, it’s day two or three of my internship. I’m doing research, making some phone calls and monitoring the Twitter account…all normal intern-ish stuff. All of a sudden, there’s a call for me.

Wait, why does anyone want to talk to me? I’m just the intern, just the one doing the research and sending the emails. But now I’m on the phone with a professional trying to see if he’s a strong candidate for an on-camera interview. Do I know what I’m doing? Absolutely not. Am I freaking out? Absolutely.

Fast-forward about five minutes and I’m hanging up the most nerve-racking call of my life when my boss turns to me and starts critiquing my call. One thing really stood out. “Take the call. It’s your story.” You have to own the interview and control the situation. 

My story? As an intern, I didn’t really think anything would actually be “mine,” per say. I just thought I’d help. I guess I should have assumed that I’d be working my way up, and why shouldn’t I own a piece of everything I do? Interning is about showcasing your talents and growing into the professional environment. Things might not have my byline right away, but there’s no reason why I can’t own my work. 

This summer is the beginning of my story; and I’m going to make every call count.

There’s always one…

Coming to a new place brings a fresh start: new places, new schedules, new experiences, but regardless of where I’ve been or what leadership program hands out the t-shirts, I tend to see the same people.

There’s always one… who has never been away from home. They freak out and recluse themselves into a comfort zone for the entire program. They’ll do the minimal amount of work, but mostly just stay in bed or stick to the friends they brought from home.

There’s always one… who doesn’t take anything seriously. They’ll blow through the program with more focus on the weekend than their internship and classes. When the summer’s over, they always seem to wonder why their killer networking at the bar didn’t quite pay off.

There’s always one… who takes it too seriously. They’ll stick to the scheduled events, tours and activities laid out by the program. They’re cordial to peers and roommates, but any kind of personality trait (other than uptight and determined) rarely appears.

There’s always one… who tries to do it all. Someone who wants to do, see and go everywhere with everyone. This one is usually me. I’m focused on interning, focused on classes, focused on blogging, focused on making friends, focused on seeing everything in Washington, focused on…you get the picture. My theory: I can sleep in August.

So, which person makes the ideal intern? What mindset do you need to have the best experience? Or is there a balance somewhere that I’m not seeing? Maybe I’ll be able to answer after I’ve caught up on sleep.