Ideally, getting a good internship should be the end of your problems for the time being.
We aren’t very enthusiastic to be the one to burst the bubble but it is actually the beginning of a new set of tribulations.
Internship challenges do hit hard because it is the first time you are in such an environment and aren’t very familiar with work-life issues.
Though you could be lucky enough to get a smooth run throughout, there are slight chances that you will escape each one of the internship challenges faced by interns.
The good thing is that if you are already aware of these internship challenges, you can handle them better instead of letting it ruin your internship experience.
So, to help you with that, here we are listing the 8 common internship challenges you may face and their solutions:
Problem 1: Unnoticed Work
It goes without saying that one does well in any field because they expect recognition. As an intern, you might be doing very good but still, find yourself in a position where your part is hardly appreciated. That can clearly be somewhat discouraging.
Solution: The solution to such internship challenges is to understand that hard work doesn’t get unnoticed for long. It might get ignored the first time, the second time, but perseverance is the key.
If you continuously perform well your work can’t be overlooked. So, don’t feel dejected and keep up the good work. It is quite likely when you are new to the organization and are expected to be there for a brief time period.
Problem 2: Uncooperative Mentor
How much you learn from your internships depend largely on your mentor. If your mentor takes you seriously and helps you learn, your internship can be truly productive.
But on the contrary, if they are uncooperative, it can be one of the greatest internship challenges for you to face.
Solution: If your mentor isn’t much into spreading knowledge, you will probably need to extract it out of them. Make a list of questions and doubts and ask them in one go as bothering them frequently can also change their attitude towards you.
However, if it doesn’t work either way, you can ask the concerned authorities for a new mentor.
Problem 3: Issues with Time Management / Self-Management
It’s your first job kind of experience. Reaching late for classes and late submissions of assignments was tolerated by your college professors.
But in a professional workspace it isn’t acceptable and hence managing time can be really difficult for you. A balance between work, academics, and personal life also seems to be a challenge.
Solution: This isn’t something you can learn overnight. Self-management can be achieved only through habit forming and by adopting a more organized living. Here’s a detailed write-up for you on How to develop self-management skills?
Problem 4: Allotment of trivial work
This is one of the commonest internship challenges faced by a large number of interns. While you might expect to be an important part of the organization, you are often offered just assisting jobs to your seniors and mentors.
Solution: You might find your work unimportant but in reality, nothing is inconsequential if it matters somewhere in the work cycle of the company.
Yes, if you are just making coffee for everyone, you need to take a step. Otherwise, it is quite normal to start with less-risky work. However, if you do well, you will soon be trusted by the authorities and allotted with better assignments and projects.
Problem 5: Inadequate Compensation
You accepted an internship thinking that there won’t be much pressure and the compensation would be sufficient for it. But after you actually start, you realize the pay is far lesser than the work deserves.
Solution: You might feel that you and a full-time employee is doing the same amount of work still you are being paid so less. But interns are under a short-term contract and are paid less almost everywhere.
If you are getting enough learning experiences and it is adding to your candidature for the future, there is no harm forfeiting some of it.
But if you think it is insufficient to meet your day to day expenses, get in touch with the HR and ask for a raise.
Problem 6: Hesitant to Ask Questions
Communication is one of those internship challenges that can actually hinder your internship time.
You might land a really good internship but upon starting you realize that the work environment is excessively grave and professional. In such an environment, you find it difficult to ask questions for the fear of being judged.
Solution: Don’t worry! Everybody out there knows that you are an intern. They are serious about their work but do not expect you to know everything. So, just be calm and concentrate on your own tasks.
Tip: Don’t bother someone every time you have a query. Write down your questions and ask when you have jotted down quite a few.
Problem7: Competitive Co-interns
Your co-interns are high-spirited and work really hard. You feel intimidated as you didn’t expect your internship to be so competitive.
Solution: Contrary to what it looks like, competitive co-interns make your experience a better one. You will get to feel the real pressure to work better and get noticed instead of just doing random work and completing your internship duration. Take part in the competition and make the most of your internship experience.
Problem 8: Overwhelmed with Work
Many firms hire lesser interns than required and put up the entire work load on the few. If you happen to join such firms, you will feel overwhelmed to be trusted with so much work when you aren’t even familiar to working in a professional setting.
Solution: Maybe because you are new and do not get the directions easily, you feel that the work is too much. Wait for a week or two to decide if it is so. If you think the work load is taking a toll on your performance and personal health, get in touch with your mentor/senior and talk to them about it.
These are the common internship challenges that are faced by students doing internships in India. But if you really dig into it, they aren’t that grave or unsolvable. Adjusting into a new place is always difficult, but if you are patient enough, you can overcome the challenges within no time.