Transitioning From Intern to Full-Time
Internships prepare you for the working world, but some find it jarring to transition from being a student intern to having a full-time job.
They aren’t the same. As an intern, you aren’t an entry-level employee, no matter what kind of work you do. When you enter into a regular job, don’t stick in the intern state of mind.
First, as an intern, you’re meant to use your job as a learning tool. Your daily tasks will vary depending on your job, but in general, mistakes are expected and when in doubt, you can pass off your task to someone who works in the company. There will be no more handholding when you get a full-time job. During your first few weeks, your boss may allow a few mistakes, but you’ll be held responsible for anything bad that happens. If you continuously make major mistakes, you’ll be fired.
Don’t let that scare you, though. If you’re in a job where you make a lot of mistakes, either it isn’t the right job for you or your boss isn’t good at explaining to you how to complete your tasks. Either way, you’ll be better off at another company or in another job.
There are definitely perks to getting out of the internship position. As an intern, you may not be paid, and you definitely won’t receive benefits like health insurance. This changes when you get a full-time job. So, you’ll have more responsibilities, but at the same time, you’ll be compensated. Additionally, this job will be your only focus – no more classes to attend or papers to write. You can do your job, punch the clock, and enjoy your free time.
When you’re ready to transition to a full-time job, the first place you should look, if you enjoyed your internship, is the same company. If they have openings, you’ll be a top candidate since you already understand how things work around the office.
Don’t assume you’ll be given the job, though. You still have to have a great resume, cover letter, and interview. Sidenote: Federal agencies also offer internships. Review the Government Jobs section of Jobmonkey to learn about agencies.
Transitioning to a full-time job can be difficult from a social perspective as well, especially if you partied a lot in college. You don’t have to be a homebody, but remember when you’re out with your colleagues that these aren’t your drinking buddies from school. Work at making a good impression whether you are in the boardroom or having drinks together after work.