Joining the “Start Up World”
Five weeks into the summer and just after leaving my first internship, I lined up another opportunity at a company called RunKeeper, a Boston-based start up app that tracks athletic activities such as running, cycling, hiking, etc. This opportunity came at the perfect time and I began almost immediately after I left the brewery. My position at RunKeeper is as the Support Intern, dealing with Customer Service and reporting bugs, feature requests, and updates to our developers. At first I was skeptical of the offer, as customer service is definitely not what I want to do in the future, but after meeting with the company, I knew that it would be an amazing experience regardless of the position.
As a RunKeeper user myself, I knew about the app and its capabilities, and in general, how cool it was! What really hooked me on the job was the atmosphere of the office. Among the 45 or so desks, I could tell that the company was very team-oriented, laid back, and a ton of fun. I was assured that I wouldn’t be just put in the corner to work by myself and be glued to my computer all day. Instead, I would be part of the Community Team and be placed in their cluster of open desks in order to be able to work closely with everyone there. Most importantly, I was told that my work would be valued by the company and I wouldn’t be there as the “grunt-work” intern. I was sold.
On my first day of the job, I was taught the ins and outs of the app, sat in on product meetings, and learned a lot about what RunKeeper embodies during the company lunch. I immediately had to get over my shyness as I was called out in front of the whole company during the meeting to tell a little bit about myself, as well as my most embarrassing story. Needless to say my face was bright red telling my story, but it was a great ice breaker to welcome me into the company. I then met Jason Jacobs, the CEO and creator of RunKeeper (as well as a Babson Alum!). The energy and passion that Jason had when he spoke was one of the most powerful pieces of education on entrepreneurship that I could have ever received. He showed me what it means to really love what you do and that passion is the fuel behind the fire that is pushing his company to success. Each week I look forward to these meetings to hear him speak about what is going on and what is planned for the future, because I learn more and more from him every time.
I quickly became a part of the RunKeeper team and easily transitioned into my position. I have been working with an awesome team of people that keep things light and fun in the office, while still getting work done. Team lunches, afternoon dart games, and daily stretch sessions allowed me to get to know (almost) everyone in the company on a personal basis. My coworkers know how to have fun, but they also know how to balance that with work in order to be the most productive. I am extremely happy that I switched internships, and there is more on what I have learned from this opportunity coming soon!