Get Ready to Mingle: Internship Style
The thirst for more connections and networking opportunities lies deep within the heart of any entrepreneur. After all, it is engraved into our brains from early on that these relationships will be key in the advancement of our career. However, I felt ill-prepared for the abundance of networking opportunities that I was introduced to at my internship. How do I make meaningful business connections? How do I stand out in a room of go-getters? However, I was shocked at how many amazing people I met while working for Donii and being at MassChallenge. It did not occur to me that this internship would become one of the most important networking opportunities of my life.
Donii is located at the Design Center Building in Boston, MA. Within this building, Donii works inside the MassChallenge office at a designated table alongside many other startup companies. In June, other companies started to arrive slowly, first with the international startups, and then all at once with ‘Move In Day’ . The office became a bustling environment filled with extraordinary ideas and teams. It was intimidating to meet so many new people in one day and almost impossible to remember everyone’s name, but as days passed by, my table-neighbors became my friends and the office became a family. So, here are some of the lessons I have learned!
Working within the MassChallenge office opened my eyes to the web of networks that surround us everyday. From this experience, I have learned very important lessons. First, talk to everyone. Not only does the workday become more fun, but knowing who you work with can open up many new opportunities for you. Second, help others when they need it. When you lend someone a resource or a helping hand, they will often return the favor.
Third, do not be afraid to approach others. I was terrified to talk to the other teams at first. I mean, I was still in college while they were tackling world problems with their startups! However, most of the people I met were happy to talk to me about their startup and hear what I thought of it, and after stroking their ego with positive remarks ha-ha, we became friends. Whether they are your boss or someone older who works in the office, they have been in your position before. So do not be scared!
Lastly, share your ideas with others and brainstorm. When you work in an office with talented and inspiring individuals like at MassChallenge, you can gain a great amount of perspective, knowledge, and ideas from brainstorming with them. At MassChallenge, everyone that I work with is either the creator or member of a startup. These people radiate the true meaning of being a hard worker, passionate, flexible, creative, and inspirational. It’s not everyday you get to brainstorm and converse with an office filled with these teams, so I knew I needed to take advantage of it.
So, for anyone starting a new internship, job, or any other situation where you are meeting some amazing people, take advantage of the opportunity given to you. Mingle, Mingle, Mingle!