How to intern effectively online

Have you been successful in getting an online internship position at your dream company? Are you now worrying about how you’ll succeed? 

Well, do not worry too much. An online internship is just like the usual internship-only difference is that you’ll have to work remotely. 

Here are a few tips to help you navigate this new experience:

1. Set goals before you start.

Just like in life, it is important to set goals and especially when you are embarking on a new journey. An internship is a learning experience that shows you the reality of the work environment, and so in order to gain from it, you need to set goals. These can be long term and short term and preferably should tie into your career aspirations. Goals will also help you track your performance and evaluate yourself at the end of the internship period.

2. Learn the company’s expectations.

It is important that you know what the company expects from you before you start your internship. This can be achieved by talking to your supervisor and asking as many questions as possible. It is better to have so much information than to not have enough. It will help you to easily accomplish tasks.

3. Establish a communication line with your supervisor and colleagues. 

Since you’ll be working online and not in physical contact with your supervisor, it is important to establish a clear communication line between you and them. This can be via email, phone calls or video calls. It is important to pick the most effective one for both of you as you’ll need to be clear about your roles, tasks and your supervisor’s expectations throughout the internship. A clear discussion needs to be had such that you are both aware of your expectations and working styles. This will also come in handy when receiving feedback and evaluation.

It is also important to stay in touch with the rest of your colleagues as you do not want to be alienated from them. Staying in touch via phone calls or video chats will help you to quickly learn the working dynamics and make you feel part of the company.

4. Know the company work environment.

Interning online means you’ll not be required to be at the office, but you might be required to be present for example for a team meeting, to meet your supervisor or the rest of the team. Therefore, you need to be aware of the office culture and working style. It is important to carry out your research about the company and also ask such that you are not caught off guard.

5. Create a workspace for yourself.

Chances are that your work station will be at home so it is important to create a work environment at your home. Get a desk and chair in a quiet room away from distractions like your bed or family members, which will help you focus better. It is also important to have a work plan, clear working hours and break times. Imitating an office setup will help you become more efficient. 

6. Remember to take work seriously.

Since you’re working online, you are not constantly supervised. This means that you could easily forget to take work seriously and miss deadlines. This will in turn affect your performance and overall assessment at the end of your internship. It is important therefore that you constantly check yourself and be consistent and execute all tasks assigned on time. This is not to say that you won’t have sick days, but it is important to communicate because it is the only way for your supervisor to know what’s happening with you.