Striving my way through onerous rounds of screening and evaluation—and competing with over 6,500 applicants from across the country—I got selected as the “CEO for One Month” of Adecco India, the provider of HR solutions. During my internship, I worked alongside and under the mentorship of country manager & MD Priyanshu Singh. Apart from being an active member of board meetings, the executive committee, weekly business reviews, monthly operations reviews and providing fresh perspectives, I had a deep understanding of the HR industry in India and learnt the functional operations of a Fortune 500 company.This internship gave me first-hand experience of how a company leadership works and coordinates. I had the opportunity to interact with every department—from finance, marketing & communications and sales to human resources—and learn how they function, the challenges they face, and the strategic plans and innovations they are coming up with. Among other things, I interacted with business heads of various verticals, attended client meetings, went for corporate events and attended team dinners.
I learnt that keeping the ‘right team’ is a make or break for any organisation. We must not create structures to fit in people, but make structures that work and then fit people in them. In addition, make sure that your subordinates understand their key responsibility areas correctly.A great skill that I learnt was having a 360-degree perspective of situations while solving challenges at hand, leading to informed and unerring decisions. Having met numerous CXOs, I also learnt how to think and act in leadership meetings, discuss business proposals, and how to close major deals and agreements.
However, the best lesson I took home was that the secret of making the most out of any internship lies in observing and learning from every person you get an opportunity to interact with. Ask thoughtful questions and soak in and interpret all possible information. Leverage your internship to build a healthy relationship with people at all levels. Every so often, ask your reporting manager how you’re doing and how things can be done better. Once you obtain a constructive feedback, try to improvise upon the areas pointed out by your manager. Most internships are extended job interviews, so ensure that you act responsibly and stay focused on your deliverables. Make sure that you continue the relationships you build, even after the internship ends. If possible, use the excess time at your disposal to take on assignments others don’t want, or projects that are needed but not clearly defined. At the end, remember ‘all that matters is what you got and what you left’.
By Mohit Mahajan
The author, a student of IIFT Delhi and Jaypee University of Information Technology, Himachal Pradesh, won the “CEO for One Month” internship of Adecco India this year