Our summer internships are underway and many of our students are asking us what they can do to prepare for their internship interview or initial meeting with their future supervisor.
So, here are our top tips on what students can do to make sure their interviews go smoothly and their first impressions count!
Look the part
This one is easy and means you start off on the right foot. Dressing formal shows professionalism and commitment to what you’re applying for. In Spain, formal pants with a shirt or blouse, or even a suit and tie or a dress, are all considered to be formal attire.
Nowadays we have many online interviews but it’s still important to look professional even if you’re not meeting in person. In this case, make sure you dress formally but also make sure your background is clean, tidy and professional too.
Taking the time to research your Internship company beforehand really goes a long way! It shows you care about the program and you’re serious about a placement with their company.
Things you can do include; checking out their website, reviewing their online presence, and even seeing if they have a Linked In page that you can connect to. If you’re familiar with their objectives and what they’re trying to accomplish, maybe you can think about how you can contribute towards these goals too.
What’s more, you can research the personnel of the company and so when you turn up for the interview you’re already aware of the interviewer’s role in the company and their team as a whole. With this knowledge you may be able to ask some more specific questions and better relate to the team.
Know your goals
Most likely you’ll be asked about your goals, expectations and personal objectives for the placement. That’s why you should go into the interview knowing your goals and what you’d like to gain from the experience.
If you don’t have a clear plan you may end up taking on a position you’re not particularly looking for or doing tasks not related to your field of study. Setting your goals on the table in the first meeting can help to reduce frustrations and misunderstandings down the line, and can make sure your experience is an effective and rewarding one!
Questions at the ready
They will definitely ask you if you have any questions! So make sure you have 1 or 2 lined up. Again, this represents a proactive and enthusiastic attitude, and means you’ll get more information from the first interview than if you didn’t ask any questions at all!
Also, be prepared to answer a variety of questions. Here’s a list of some of the most common ones:
- What do you hope to gain from this internship?
- Please explain your background and experience in this field.
- Why do you want to work in this industry?
- What parts of the industry are you particularly interested in?
- What are your strengths and weaknesses?
Right attitude for the job
Go into your pre-interview/ first meeting/ first day with a positive attitude. Be ready to assist the company in their project goals while also displaying your skills and knowledge.
Of course, an internship is not always going to be plain sailing. There will be hurdles, maybe some monotonous tasks and possibly a few misunderstandings along the way.
That’s why your attitude is key to your success. Be adaptable, ask questions, be proactive and take initiative, go the extra mile, and really make the most of your experience!
So there you have it. Those are our top tips for your first interview or meeting with your internship company.
Take these tips on board and make a great first impression ready for your future internship to start off on the right foot! For all of our Internship Sectors in Spain, click here.