In honor of National Intern Day some of our #SEGreatPeople Interns are sharing stories about their internships. This blog is authored by Aishwarya Pandey, Global Digital Marketing Intern in the United States.
Every next level of your life will demand a different version of you.
I believe I have embraced different from the start and different is something that keeps me going! My name is Aishwarya, and I am from Mumbai, India. I am currently pursuing my MBA at Bentley University in Massachusetts.
For the past few months, I have been interning with Schneider Electric as a Global Digital Marketing Intern with the Social Media Team supporting North America Marketing Operations.
The five most important things that I have learned from this internship are:
- Keep an open mind and have a positive attitude
- Take measured risks. Embrace Different.
- When in doubt, ask! Don’t be afraid to ask questions
- It’s important to connect with people from different teams, network, and build professional relationships.
- Ask for feedback and work on it!
A New Beginning
I moved to the US in January 2020 to attend graduate school, and two months later the pandemic hit. We all had to adapt to a new normal gradually. Along with moving to online learning trends, we also had to adapt to stay at home, more precisely, not stepping out of the house. It was not easy for all of us, I know. That was the time when I planned to start something new, something I was passionate about. I checked up some online video editing lessons and started editing my pre-recorded vlogs on my hard drive for months. I embraced different.
Pursuing an Internship
In June of 2019 after completing my first semester of grad school online, I began to search for an internship. Because I was an international student, I began looking for internships almost six months earlier.
I was searching for a digital marketing role that involved building marketing strategies, understanding customers, and enhancing brand awareness. An opening at Schneider Electric piqued my interest, so I connected with alumni from my university who worked there to learn more about the company.
I feel that among college students, networking, building connections are very underrated. I have seen people not wanting to try and build professional relationships. It is essential to understand that it is not just for the job but for your intellectual, hardworking, professional family. My advice for everyone is to always be networking and building connections.
Network with Employees
I met a current Schneider via LinkedIn who had been with the company for 15 years and scheduled a call with him before my interview. I wanted to understand the company culture and values. We spoke about my interest and expertise, his role at Schneider, and his days at Bentley University. It was a wonderful conversation. He sent a note to one of his connections, whom he knew in the Marketing Teams and that I think helped me get my foot in the door for an internship at this Fortune 500 firm.
My Internship Experience
I still remember the day I spoke to Jamie, our internship manager for an interview. It was such a cordial interview experience where we talked about my area of expertise and interests. Jamie spoke to me about various roles in the Global Marketing that I can be a part of and we had a good conversation about the company culture and values. I was hired and joined Schneider on January 19, 2020. A huge thank you to Jamie, who has been so supportive from the beginning. Whether it is handling generic queries, reviewing presentations, or sharing her expertise, she has been my go-to person during this entire experience.
As with every corporate function, I began with training, became well equipped with tools and technologies to excel at your role, and then began my journey. Trust me, I have 3.5 years of full-time experience before starting my MBA, and I did not expect my role to be much more than just an internship. I had assumed that I would have to follow an already set course of work. But to my surprise, I got an opportunity to learn and become accountable for my projects. I was exposed to a variety of projects and given full authority to prove my excellence. I was allowed to embrace different.
Developing Marketing Skills
This was my first internship experience in the States and a wonderful one. It is essential for an intern that the organization and its people help the intern to grow and develop skills; that is what internships are for! My core mission was planning and execution of social media strategies for North America, and I can’t be thankful enough to my manager Jeanne for bringing out the best in me. One of the projects I have worked on was aligning the audience targeting to enhance the engagement rate on social media platforms. I was given a debrief of the project, and I could research, use various tools, and run a pilot with a budget a couple of times to improvise the audience targeting. This helped me work on a project from start to end and lead it to execution with a 2x-5x improvement in engagement rate.
I will complete eight months of my internship at Schneider this August, this time has been exciting and inspiring, as well as full of excitement and learning. I believe that the organization stands true to its core values of being meaningful, inclusive, and empowered.
Networking with Colleagues Across the Globe
There are many enlightening parts of the company, and one of them is the community leadership calls. These are monthly or bi-monthly calls in the global and North America community that bring all employees together, and in my opinion, it’s more of a transparency culture. The leadership team discusses opportunities, celebrates incoming employees, appreciates all the people retiring, and gives its employees a clear picture of their contribution to its goals!
Another fascinating part of Schneider’s culture was a Buddy Meetup where you are assigned a buddy from a different country every month, and you can schedule coffee chats with them, know what projects they are working on, and connect with interns across the globe.
There were so many virtual opportunities to meet others while working from home. In my experience, Schneider has nailed the work-from-home culture. Although most of my internship has been work from home, recently, all the North America Marketing Interns met at our Andover office in Massachusetts, and it was so much fun meeting everyone for the first time. We went for lunch together and then had a facility tour of Andover Research and Development Centre, followed by a Team Meeting.
If I have to summarize my internship experience, I would say that it was ecstatic, enlightening, and an enriching experience.
Looking Forward to the Future
I am pleased to share that I will be continuing my career with Schneider as a full-time employee. I will be transitioning to a Marketing Launch Leader position in the Industrial Automation team and I am excited to begin this new professional journey. I encourage you to check out our careers site and see if there’s a role that is a good fit for you!
About the Author
Aishwarya is the Global Marketing Intern in the North America Marketing Operations Team. Born and raised in India, she holds an Engineering degree in Information Technology and is a recent MBA graduate from Bentley University, Massachusetts. She started interning at Schneider Electric in January 2021. She has worked in Information Technology and Marketing domains prior to her MBA. She is a YouTuber and curates travel and daily vlogs on her YouTube channel.
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