Reflections from Emma Chui, our Business Development Intern this Summer 2016!
(Hi there! I’m Emma Chui — the rose amongst the thorns in the middle. Just kidding guys? Haha)
Traveling and making money overseas during the summer holiday as a university student is not as difficult as it sounds. I made it to Singapore! And no, I wasn’t just getting coffee and delivering things! As a university student from Hong Kong student majoring in translation, I am definitely grateful for the opportunity that I had to be interning in a start-up in Singapore.
When weighing the options for a summer internship, many would gravitate towards big name companies. But I chose to gain real work-life experience by joining Jublia, a tech start-up — something that has definitely given me more gains to share with my future employers. There are many things I like about my internship experience, and these are the 3 things that I like the most:
1. Real-life Business Environment
Jublia is a fast growing startup with good traction, unlike big companies with thousands of employees and interns, I was exposed to all aspects of the business which was really eye-opening. We all worked around the same table. This meant that everybody knew what everybody else was doing, regardless if you were from the tech team, customer success team or business development team. Every member in Jublia is important, including interns. During my short stint together with the other interns, we were all given real responsibilities. To be honest with you, it was quite scary and stressful at first but when I overcame that fear (through good communication with my new colleagues and mentor) I saw how beneficial an experience like this was to my growth and transition from academia to the real world.
2. Learning and leveling up
As with many young people, I was (and still am) unsure about the direction of my future career path. This internship gave me the opportunity to try out different roles within the scope of Business Development, widening my perspective. For instance, as a Business Development intern, I learnt how to construct a sustainable sales funnel, I also learnt how to do prospecting; and through that I’ve actually managed to arrange real meetings for my colleagues with Heads of Departments and Directors from potential client companies. Something that I found very helpful was how easy it was to speak with the Founders. This allowed me to understand the bigger picture of the business and how all the components fit. It gave me the chance to understand the Tech industry better and it also rather thrilling to be learning from some of the brightest people I’ve known.
3. Different Culture Experience
This is my personal take on the Singapore working culture as a intern from Hong Kong, largely influenced by past experiences as well as the internship with Jublia. I enjoyed Jublia’s independent working culture. It gives the employees a lot of freedom as long as deadlines are met with a high quality of work delivered. What I’ve learnt:
a) Dare to ask — Nobody knows everything. It’s not shameful to make mistakes and to ask your colleagues questions. Failure is part of the road to success. We are supposed to learn and especially learn from mistakes.
b) Believe in yourself — Just because you’re an intern doesn’t mean you’re not useful or cannot contribute to the company in a significant. Don’t be afraid to take responsibilities. You can do it!
c) Always give your best shot — It’s a cliché to say that but definitely true — try your best! It takes time to achieve something but you’ll regret it if you didn’t try hard enough because you’ll never know how far you can go
Two months flew by so quickly, I have gained valuable insights about the events industry and this exposure to all aspects of a stable and sustainable business has helped me significantly with my career planning. My biggest takeaway is definitely the network and friendship I forged with my colleagues and friends in Singapore. My experience in Jublia has probably been the most enriching and rewarding experience so far. I am confident that I’ll be able to put the skills and knowledge that I’ve learnt to good use. I would highly recommend students who seek a challenge to be part of the Jublia team because it is a place where you get to work in a high-energy environment freely as well as make a visible impact on the business.