An internship is undoubtedly an extremely valuable experience to have.
What is your name, nationality, what do you study and in what year of your studies are you at the moment?
I am Irina Grosu, I come from Romania, and I am an IBCoM student, currently in my last (3rd) year.
Where did you do your internship and what was your position?
I did my internship at an executive search and consultancy international firm, Heidrick & Struggles. My position was dual, namely that half of my responsibilities were coming from the research department and the other half of my time was dedicated to marketing.
Why did you choose this company to do your internship at?
One of the decisive factors was that the fact that this position offered me two internships in one, giving me the opportunity to familiarize myself with the world of executive search and bring my contribution towards fulfilling the organization’s mission – to change the world for the better, one leadership team at a time. This also touches upon the second reason, which was the company culture I immediately identified myself with. Heidrick & Struggles cares enormously for its people, and it supports them throughout their journey, so I really appreciated the diversity, alongside professionalism, and true value recognition. Lastly, I was also eager on learning a lot during my internship and the horizontal integration of the firm immediately made me want to have this opportunity. As an intern, one day you can immerse yourself into the industrial sector, another move towards financial and wrap up the week with researching the tech industry. It always keeps you excited for what’s to come.
What were your main tasks during the internship?
My main tasks were, as well, divided into the two components of my internship. For the marketing part, I needed to take care of campaigns built around H&S events, design material prompts etc. For the research element, my tasks differed a lot from one project to the other. Initially, I needed to create pitches, reports, market overviews and, needless to say, do loads of research. After I got to grips with how the entire process works, I was gradually starting to receive more complex tasks, diving deeper into the executive search, starting to look for candidates, research more complex industries and even attend interviews every now and then.
Do you believe an internship is a valuable addition to the academic curriculum?
An internship is undoubtedly an extremely valuable experience to have. It offers you a better perspective regarding what you want to do in the future, but it also you teaches you a lot about yourself. Having it as part of your curriculum is a really valuable addition to your program, especially when following a research university, which doesn’t have amongst its main focuses the practical, hands-on experiences.
Do you think the skills learned during your studies come in handy when being an intern?
I really think the skills and knowledge accumulated during your studies all stand you in good stead, but they also become more rounded. What I mean by this is that when you recall a certain model or theory and you put it into practice, it sediments better – you discover on your own what it actually entails, its benefits but also limitations. It feels as if you can now master the learned skills to a whole other level. They fully become an integrated part of who you are.
Did you stay in touch with your internship company after you finalized the internship?
In the last week of my internship, I received the amazing news, namely that I had been asked about the plans I have for next year. As the team was very pleased with my efforts, performances, and results so far, I got the opportunity of “continuing” this internship from September onwards, as a part-time working student.