So, you finish University… proud, successful, a good degree under your belt.... but what next? Selecting a profession or sector, getting started in a career, interviewing and convincing an employer you are what they are looking for is no easy feat.
For me it was about focussing on what I really wanted to do and to try and build as much experience as possible in my chosen field. I had decided I wanted to turn my interest to events, and although I had completed a post grad diploma in Event Management, I knew potential employers would also want experience, so the next obvious step was to find an exciting events internship.
And here I am at Smart LIVE! A fast-growing, progressive and innovative events agency focused on events ranging from private and corporate celebrations to large scale incentive conferences with several hundred guests. Smart LIVE are fantastic to work for. They include me in all aspects of their event management process, including venue searching, writing venue proposals, conducting site visits, liaising and negotiating with suppliers, ordering and tracking event merchandise, on site logistics, budgeting, coming up with creative concepts (a personal favourite!) and post-event evaluation.
There were two major events within my first three weeks. This really threw me in at the deep end; handling last minute client preparation requirements, being out on site with clients and actually gaining real, live practical experience in turning an event into a really memorable experience for guests.
In my opinion, for anyone looking at the internship route, it is the attitude of the organisation towards their interns which really makes the experience stand out. Are they inclusive, will they really get you involved, will they motivate you beyond your comfort zone, teach you, allow you to fully contribute and work with real clients? All I can say is that Smart LIVE are the dream employer to work for as an intern. I have been included, stretched, taught and allowed to learn in a practical, hands on client environment. I now feel well on the way to being a valuable asset in the event management industry.
I remember on my first day at Smart LIVE the thing that struck me most about the organisation and the wider Smart Group, was the sense of family and team environment which I now see as essential to develop both individually and collectively as a business.
You could say my internship at Smart LIVE has been an extremely successful "event" in itself. This is because, I feel more than satisfied with what I have achieved, it has been a truly unique and memorable experience and the people have gone above and beyond to help me which consequently has lead me to become a true advocate for both internships and the company. Internships can really help you bring the ‘edge’ over the competition in this already very competitive employment market.