Bring More To The Table!

90 days of spring logo-1Optimal effort + Likability  = Success 


If there’s one thing to take away from 70-year-old Ben Whittaker’s (as played by Robert de Niro) internship stint in ‘The Intern’,  it would be to always put in extra effort in everything you do. I should know – it was what got me through the first week of my apprenticeship as mentioned in my previous post ‘Don’t Get Killed in the Internship Hunger Games.’.

When Ben was first assigned to work with Jules, the founder and CEO of fast growing e-commerce startup About The Fit, she was initially skeptical about his capabilities and immediately wrote him off as a hiring mistake. Yet, through his best efforts and immense likability, he slowly won over his colleagues and got into Jule’s good graces.

The importance of going the extra mile is extremely crucial in creating opportunities, especially during your apprenticeship. It is what makes your seniors and managers sit up and take notice. But before that, you will need to hone your essential skills and be prepared to offer your expertise even when no one is asking for it.  So, here are my top 5 tips on how to make the best out of your apprenticeship.

1.The grand scene

If you want to become a successful content and digital marketer, you should be a master of at least one core skill – commercial writing skills, design, campaigning etc. Think about it seriously and bear in mind that this big picture must be ambitious enough to galvanize you to get through the daily grind.

2. The trigger

As we all know, every task is important in processes. To achieve abovementioned goal, all events and tasks leading up to it should be executed properly. Connecting your long-term vision to your daily tasks is the most universal motivational trigger ever. Use it well and to your benefit to effectively kill off all tedious routine tasks.

3.Alive, Awake, Alert

Workplace is not university – I repeat this everyday to adjust my mind. For good. It’s important to observe your surroundings especially when you are a newcomer. Take cue from Ben. Come to work on time, communicate professionally, dress well, take initiative, be cordial, understand the dynamics of your firm, offer your expertise even when no one asked. Once you familiarise yourself with the office and people, you can then take calculated risks and get out of your comfort zone. And this is how you grow.

4.First come, first served. 

Take the first step – there is always an advantage for the first mover.

Lead the way in establishing your career dream with your mentor. Let them know specifically what skills you would like to develop during your internship and use these to guide your goals and daily tasks.

5.An insightful staging 

Last but not least, start creating your portfolio with all the projects you’ve completed, new skills you’ve acquired, and new connections you’ve built everyday. At the end of your apprenticeship, you will have concrete proof for your true capacity, which will likely help you land your next dream job.

Take responsibility for your contributions and leverage on any and everything you were asked to do. Only by stepping away from your comfort zone can you gain your competitive edge, and eventually gainful work. As Ben said: “An intern with value is an intern with ‘creative flair.’ So be pro-active. Add value to your company even without being asked. If you can do your best, grand opportunitites are waiting ahead.


Categories: 90 Days of Spring


A pragmatic dreamer, Thao is driven to conceptual ideas into concrete action plans, during her waking hours. A strong believer in "The best marketing doesn't feel like marketing", her bag of tricks includes 5 years worth of marketing campaigning, social media jaunts, and grand design schemes. She currently wants to bring her A-game to Spring.

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