What if you were an intern

by Allison Orsoni

After several weeks of intense reflexion about what should I write that would add the most value to you, dear reader-future-applicant-I-hope, I ended up trying to answer this simple yet tricky question: What should and shouldn’t you expect from an internship at Paua Ventures?


1. Learn, learn, and learn — You are interested in the start-up scene but don’t know what “NLP” means? You shouldn’t worry. I had to google it the first time I encountered it. When you join as an intern, you are not expected to “know-it-all”, but you are expected to be curious. The team will take the time to train you properly on very different topics, from term-sheet negotiation to AdWords. And if you take the time to research the technologies you don’t quite understand, you will finish your internship knowing a very lot more than when you arrived!

2. Meet amazing founders — During the course of your internship, you will get the chance to meet tens of founders, all of them amazingly passionate about their projects. You will learn from their successes but also from their failures and how they overcame them. If you are thinking about launching your own company at some point, your time at Paua Ventures will be more valuable than you could ever think and will help you avoid (some) mistakes and save your precious time.

3. A great team and team spirit — We all sit together, we share, we learn from each other and we enjoy being with each other. May it be for lunch or check-out beers, you shouldn’t expect to be left alone!


1. Getting bored — Sorry folks, if you are looking for a perfectly boring experience, you knocked at the wrong door and I suggest you leave this website right away. Like now. I’m serious, stop reading.

2. Being baby-sitted — You will be given responsibilities, and you should embrace them! What you are asked to do won’t be done in parallel by a colleague “just in case”. You should do it right. Being an intern means you are here to learn, so ask as many questions as you need to complete your tasks in time and in the right way, but don’t expect your job to be done by someone else. If you don’t do it, then it just won’t be done.

3. Being disappointed — You might have a crush on a startup you reviewed and presented in a meeting, but you are told to decline the deal because your more experienced colleagues have different views. It’s disappointing yes, even frustrating. This is where “SHOULD #1” comes in handy: understanding why your recommendation wasn’t right will help you think differently the next time. You will see that after some meetings, you will gain experience in analyzing a business plan and your recommendations will end up being most of the time aligned with that of your colleagues. Mission accomplished!

Disclaimer: you will not find all the aspects of my internship listed here; feel free to check it out by yourself.

About the author


Allison completed her internship from April till June 2017. She has a Master in Economics and Management with a major in Corporate Finance from ESSEC Business School, France. Before joining us, she completed a 6-month internship in Investment Banking in Paris and several marketing positions across Europe and French Polynesia. She can now be found at the Factory Berlin within the new Innovation team of Societe Generale.