Today is the last day of my RAW internship after starting a year ago almost to the day. In this year I have completed many different tasks and had many different experiences and I definitely believe that this experience will be extremely helpful to me in the future. My time at RAW has certainly helped me in my final year Marketing studies at Teesside University and I feel like I know a lot more about Digital Skills than anyone else on my course. As well as giving me the practical skills that I can take into my future career it has also given me my first experiences of working with people in an office environment. My preconceived ideas of an office like ‘The Office’ soon vanished when working with the RAW team for the first time. Although this is my first experience of working in an office I genuinely believe I won’t work in an office like this again. In my first year at University I studied a Business Management module in which we learned how you should run an office in order to have a happy team, this is exactly what Joanna has done at RAW. The office doesn’t feel like an office. It’s bright, colourful, relaxed and fun.
My first experience of RAW was in December 2014 when Joanna held a lecture at Teesside University. She told us about her experiences which led her to create RAW and then told us about RAW and it’s operations. Later in the day our course leader came into one of our seminars and explained that Joanna was looking for someone to go into RAW for a couple days to help out with the Christmas hampers she was doing at the time. I took the decision to volunteer and looking back I now realise how important that decision was for me. Along with two other people from my course I came to work for RAW for three days in December 2014. In those three days we were in control of the Christmas Hamper campaign that Joanna was running. We had to go out into Stockton and source local products for the hamper, we then created the hampers and delivered them to the lucky businesses. I really enjoyed those few days at RAW and I felt that the RAW team was a team I wanted to be part of. With this in mind, after Christmas I emailed Joanna expressing how much I enjoyed my three days at RAW and I said that I would love to help out in any way in the future. Joanna then offered me the opportunity to come and intern at RAW in the new year.
The beginning of my internship in January 2015 was at a major time for RAW. When I came into RAW in December to help out, it was RAW Marketing Company. However when I came in to start my internship in January, RAW had just rebranded to RAW Digital Training so it was quite hectic for the first month. For the first few months of my internship I was tasked with scheduling the Social Media posts for the RAW Digital Training brand. I would look for relevant social media news or blog posts and send it out to all the followers of RAW’s social media platforms. This was one of the main tasks I have done in my time at RAW and it is something I have enjoyed. Other tasks that I have done in my time at RAW is data collection, blog posting and researching. I have enjoyed all the tasks I have done whilst at RAW and they are ‘real’ business skills I can take into my career.
Another vital experience from my time at RAW was my attendance at the North East Expo. This was my first experience of an expo and it was an important experience for me. I was surprised at how good the atmosphere was at the expo, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy it as much as I did but there was a real buzz around the place that day. I was given time by Joanna to go round the building and have a look at all the stands and ask questions. I also attended a few lectures that day and really enjoyed them. After I had done that it was back down to the RAW stand to help out with the team. I was head bartender at the Social Media Bar serving our Digital inspired mocktails. It was an experience I really enjoyed and I would love to go back again.
A major benefit of interning for a Digital Training business is that I could attend Digital Training Programmes. Before I started my internship, I thought I knew a lot about Social Media. I was a self proclaimed Twitter expert. However I soon dispelled that self proclamation on my first day at RAW when I listened to James discuss social media. He literally knows everything possible about anything digital. It made me embarrassed to think I knew everything about Twitter. I attended one of James’ Google Day Masterclasses and I loved it. I learned things about Google that I didn’t think was possible. His style of training made complex ideas seem simple and it is knowledge that has stuck with me. In fact in one of my assignments this year at University I had to produce a Digital Marketing Strategy and my attendance at the Google Masterclass has helped me massively with this assignment.
When reflecting on my time at RAW it makes me realise how much I have gained from this experience and how different I am from the person I was a year ago. This experience has made me more driven to forge a career in this sector and actually made me look forward to working full-time after University. I am going to miss coming into RAW every Friday and being part of the RAW team. I hope to cross paths with RAW sometime in the not too distant future but it’s now time for me to pass on the baton to another intern and give them the opportunity to have an experience like I have.
Thanks for the opportunity Joanna,