I came, I saw and (hope) I conquered

My Google internship story

I joined Google Nigeria as a Business Intern in her Marketing division on the 5th of June and I’m writing this to tell my story (perhaps, it’ll inspire you). This piece is divided into sections to make it easy to follow. Here, I talk about the happenings before getting the internship offer, during the internship and what might be next for me. I also add a bit about how you can become an intern at Google.

Related article: What it is like interning at Andela.

Getting the Offer

April 3, I received the good news of an internship offer by Google which I hinted in a tweet.

Now, how does that tweet relate to my internship offer at Google?

Consecutively for 2 years (2014 & 2015), I had applied to intern at Google but didn’t even get past the application process (click the image below to learn about how Google hires).

Source: Google careers

Here is a 2015 mail thread between me and one of the intern recruiters at Google.

Rejection mail thread from Google

Interestingly, she happened to be the same person to bear the news about my internship offer 2 years later, LOL.

Success mail thread from Google

At that moment, I remembered what one of the Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAML) interviewers said to me (after two failed attempts with them):

If you want something badly, you keep going for it

The journey — during the internship

My internship Timeline

June 5, I resumed at the Nigeria office with two other amazing interns (Iyanu and Subomi). We were given an office tour by our different managers and we got to introduce ourselves along the way. Myself and Subomi worked with the Marketing team on YouTube while Iyanu worked with the Large Customer Sales (LCS) team.

LRT: Iyanu, Subomi and myself shot by Tolu Odeyemi, @tmanmusic
P.S I did a lot of photo and video fooling arounds…LOL.

Hehehe, I had a special hype man…Tolu Odeyemi. The person that took the pictures.

Here is another one.

One of those days where I wore my jacket to work
Ok, let’s get to serious stuff again…

Highlights of my Internship

Several highlights but I will like to ‘highlight’ just three (see what I did there, ehn?). Namely; Google for Nigeria (and selfie with the CEO, Sundar), Google Serve and other cool projects I worked on like the YouTube Go. Compliment from one of my senior colleagues, Remi Dada (no, we are not related).

1. Getting a picture with Sundar Pichai during Google for Nigeria

As shown in my internship timeline above, one of the major highlights of my time at Google was being part of the first ever Google for Nigeria event. Not just as an attendee but as a Googler.

Also, I got a picture with the CEO, Sundar Pichai (it was supposed to break the internet, but oh well…)

Then a lot of other celebrities…

Read this re-cap of Google for Nigeria by Country Manager, Juliet Ehimuan.

2. Participating in Google Serve

Left: My handprint in support of an NGO; Right: Me going in for a selfie with the other participants
Tobi Asekun and myself with the subgroup of students we got to ‘motivate/inspire’.

Before now, I had read about Google’s volunteering program for Googlers, Google Serve. Infact, I was doing a Medium post about it while I was interning at Sky UK. So, to finally be a part of it seems surreal to me.

3. The cool, visible projects I got to work on

One of the announcements made at the Google for Nigeria event was YouTube Go (read from CNN’s Stephanie Busari). YouTube Go is a product I worked on. Infact, it was a major part of my internship project.

I managed the Vendor that carried out our research pre-announcement as well as tested and reported on the product.

Don’t you just like my cool t-shirt?

Another big thing that happened to me was that one of the slides I had worked got shared to a the larger YouTube team (Like!, you might not understand the impact of this, but it is pretty huge!).

4. Compliment from Remi Dada

Remi said to be that usually interns are like burdens, but I was an asset :(

And since then that has stuck with me! I’m thoroughly grateful.

L-R: Remi Dada, Benjamin Dada

Sigh, this was the closest I got to taking a picture with him.

Key Takeaways

I think aside from the autonomy and trust I enjoyed. I appreciated the fact that I actually got to work on ‘‘braggable’’ stuff. I literally wasn’t treated like an intern (sounds cliche but yeah). Lots of important stuff were entrusted into my hands (which I can’t speak of for obvious reasons).

One of the people that visited our office from a different site, saw the work I had been doing and didn’t believe I was an intern. According to him, he dropped me a nice note in my intern pack (don’t ask what this is). Actually, scroll up, he is the guy that shared my slide to the broader YouTube team :)

At Google, you have a chance to bring your full self to work. Everyone I worked with had something unique about them. Baba and Tutu (both employees) are artists, Subomi is a fashion blogger, Affiong (my manager) is a food blogger etc.

Basically, the people make it an awesome place to work. One of those days, I got ‘emotional’ about leaving. Lolu, is one of my work buddies, we go home together (when he is not out seeing woman, LOL).

Thread for one of my colleagues turned friend, Lolu

The unconventional work space is also a plus. I can’t count the number of times I played ball before settling to work.

Then the food :(. Fam, I think I added (weight). There is an adage that says:

If you work at Google for 5 weeks, you’ll add 5 kg

Can’t say how true this is but I know I added, LOL.

Finally, the end-of-internship package we got was lit! From speaker, to wireless headset to a Tablet, power bank, flash drives etc…all for one person!

And yes, we (the interns) got a carton of cup cakes on the day of my final internship presentation.

Conclusion

I enjoyed my ~ 3 months working at Google. And I believe any other person can work at Google. Random survey of the people I work with shows a diverse range of schools: UNILAG, CU, Lautech etc. But one thing is clear the employees are world-class.

If you are interested in applying, definitely check these Business internship opportunities:

Bonus Tip: The internships applications open up in September/October. And I already made a commitment to tweet it once it is out. Also, having something else you do will stand you out. Finally, being independent, self-motivated and showing it could stand you out at the interview process. But yeah, let’s talk when you get to interview stage.

Thank you Google for having me. I hope to make y’all proud soon!

Twitter thread on my last day at Google
Special S/O to all da real naija Googlers (see them on stage with the CEO)!
Google CEO dances Penalty on stage with other Nigerian Googlers

What’s next for Benjamin?

I am yet to decide. But, at the moment, I’ll return to finish my Masters.

If you are hiring or know of any cool grad/full-time opportunities, please, do Hit Me Up…benjaminodada [at] gmail [dot] com

Roles in Consulting (Tech and Management), Product Marketing, Media and communications excite me. Also, I have a bit of experience in those areas.

Thank you!

— DB

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