This feature was written by Hafsa Ikram while on work experience with GoThinkBig. 

Work experience can either be doing tons of work, or making tea and coffee for everyone in the office. There is literally no in-between! Or so I thought…

My experience with GoThinkBig has been pretty amaaazing! In the span of two weeks I got to write features, tweet from the GoThinkBig account AND even join the O2 Think Big panel to help decide who gets funding for their project ideas.

The team knew I was interested in Marketing and so tailored my work accordingly, which was brilliant.

So I thought I’d share some of my expectations of doing work experience and compare them to the actual reality…

Expectation: Making tea for everyone in the office

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Reality: Getting to write features, newsletters and tweets

In reality, I got to work with nearly everyone, from the opportunities team to the content department. I even took part in the O2 Think Big panel meeting, which was very interesting to see. The best part was getting to write features for the website and being allowed to pick any topic I wanted!

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Expectation: Shadowing, shadowing aaaand a lot more shadowing

Some of my previous work experience has just revolved around me shadowing someone for the whole day, which did become a bit too boring!  I thought it would be the same here too.

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Reality: Work work work work work *Rihanna’s voice*

However, the team here gave me a vast variety of work and allowed me to get on with it. This let me gain a lot of new skills like communication, time management and working within a team.

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Expectation: What now?!

Once you get past the application stage and actually bag yourself that work experience opportunity, you usually tend to think ‘Now what?!’ … Am I actually going to sit there not knowing what to do?

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Reality: Slow and steady wins the race

In reality, I got to start off my first day sending out emails and eventually learning how the organization works, then gradually working my way through different activities and more complex tasks.

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Expectation: Newbie

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Reality: Part of the team

I actually fit right in, everyone on the team was really friendly and welcoming, and I felt like I’ve been working in the office forever. I would definitely encourage and recommend others to do work experience too, not only will this build up your skills even further but make you more employable as well!

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 If you fancy joining the GoThinkBig team for work experience, apply here.

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