Before completing their internship with BARR, we ask our interns to share five things they have learned. Let’s hear from this summer’s intern, Drew Havens.
My summer spent as an intern at BARR Advisory in Kansas City has been one of the most interesting and challenging experiences that I’ve had the privilege of going through in my life. It taught me a lot of lessons about entering the business world and life in general. I got to meet a lot of amazing people along the way who were incredibly helpful and guided me to success throughout my time at BARR. These are my top five takeaways:
Communication is Key
Everyone knows that a company must have good communication between its team members to be successful. This is especially important at BARR where everyone works remotely. I quickly learned that making sure everyone is talking and consistently updating each other is key for a business to succeed. It can be very easy to get so focused into your own work that you may forget to keep the team updated on your progression. It’s important to stay in regular communication with your team so that everyone is on the same page to avoid any possible confusion.
Remember You Are Part of a Team
I was surrounded by an amazing team of extremely hard working and talented people at BARR, and they were such a valuable asset to me during my internship. As I began to receive work, I faced many difficulties at first, but when I looked to the team for help, they were quick to assist me with anything. Asking questions led me to learning important lessons from my coworkers. The best piece of advice I could give to a future BARR intern is to remember that the team wants you to succeed just as much if not more than you do. So, ask as many questions as you can, and the BARR team will teach you everything you need to know.
Take on Challenges
As I began to get settled into my internship, I quickly realized the importance of saying “yes” to challenges and learning from the difficulties they would bring. It can be daunting to say yes when a team member asks if you want to take on a more difficult assignment, but the challenge brings important lessons with it. I learned a lot about problem solving and how to work through challenges without being overwhelmed. This goes back to communicating and making sure to ask as many questions as possible. The BARR team was always ready to assist me through any difficulty and they taught me a lot of lessons that will help me through any challenge I might face going forward.
Being a new team member in any position can be daunting and it might take some time to feel comfortable with everyone, but it is important to make yourself a part of the team and get involved with everything the company has to offer. Developing the right chemistry with your team members is key and this can be done by simply being a part of everything. Whether it be a virtual happy hour, giving an opinion on a business process, or even just sending a picture of your dog to everyone, cementing yourself as part of the team makes every aspect of your work life better.
Learn from Your Coworkers
Similarly to asking as many questions as possible, always making sure you are paying attention and learning from your coworkers is especially vital in an internship. There is a lot to learn simply from paying attention to how everyone operates and does things. I learned a lot about the best ways to work and communicate with clients by paying attention to how the BARR team did it. Even when they weren’t specifically trying to teach me something, I was still able to learn from them by seeing how they tackled challenges.