By Lily Douglas-Pennant
Guest Writer, aged 16
With work experience increasingly becoming a vital part of those golden CVs, it is significant that one recognises the importance of such experience. Work experience is a golden ticket for employers, as shows your own ability to cope in the actual world of work. Any experience is valuable to your future career, as the more things we try, the more opportunities we are exposing ourselves to. And of course, to know what we may want to do, we have to try and find out what we would really rather not do.
So… how can we diminish that fear of spilling coffee all over a colleague whilst making the most of your work experience? I am going to talk about some tips that will help you leave that week of work feeling fulfilled and having taken advantage of every second.
1. Stay positive! 😄
Your attitude to the week and during is extremely relevant. It is important to enter the work environment feeling positive and confident; (not too big for your boots mind) ready to help with enthusiasm when needed, and able to engage in conversation with those around you. A positive mind set will help boost your confidence and ready you for the new and exciting week ahead, but additionally a negative disposition reflects badly on yourself. This attitude can be demonstrated with a smile or by greeting those around you. When I say greet, this does not cover a fist bump! Try a polite ‘hello’ or a curtsy (just joking, but you get my gist…)
2. Do not be a brick wall 🙋
Another way to take advantage of your work experience is through showing your own genuine interest in the company, group, charity or people around you. I believe that there is a cycle between knowledge and interest. The more interest you express, the more you will learn, and the more you learn generally leads to the more interesting your work becomes! How can we show interest, I hear you ask? Questions is the answer. Asking lots of questions will enable you to learn more about the work you are involved in whilst indicating your own curiosity, which you will need to possess if you want to work effectively.
3. Be organised 💼
To work to the best of your ability and ready yourself for the working world, ensure you arrive on time, have all that is needed for the day – whether that be lunch, a notebook and pen etc. It is also essential to be wearing the right clothes for where you are working, so get prepared by doing some research on where you will be working and what is required of you.
4. Get writing 📝
A great way to ensure your work experience is as beneficial as possible is writing up what you did and what you have learnt for every day of your work. This will make writing your CV that much easier but also allows you to thoroughly reflect on your experience.
5. Never say No 🙅🏾
Although scary, saying yes to all opportunities during your work experience is vital. Companies have said that by letting employers know you are keen, (by accepting and involving yourself in all tasks with enthusiasm), the more opportunities you are likely to get.
I hope these tips have been helpful, but remember, those around you are not seeking to trip you up, so if you are feeling really stuck with something or need someone’s help, do not be afraid to ask. They don’t bite…usually!