News A Reflection on My Internship at Citoyen Optimum
During my communications studies, I learned about the importance of preparation and all the work that goes on behind the scenes. But I only fully understood what that really meant when it came time to put theory into practice. I began a four-month internship at Citoyen Optimum in May. I was excited to try something new, but little did I know how rewarding those four months would be on both a personal and professional level. Looking back I have the following takeaways:
1. Good teamwork is the foundation of a successful project
As employees at Citoyen Optimum, and Vision 7 International more broadly, we have to work efficiently and effectively with a number of agencies and offices to deliver nationwide campaigns. We have to communicate with both internal and client stakeholders, which requires excellent coordination among team members. Transparency between colleagues and healthy communications across the organizational hierarchy also help keep interactions smooth. We really have to stick together to achieve our objectives. It is a pleasure to see how team members are willing to give their all to reach—and exceed—the goals of a campaign.
2. Agency work is both exciting and demanding
To work in an agency you have to be fast and results-oriented. But you never get bored. For someone like me who dreads a routine, it’s the perfect environment. During busy periods there is a lot of work but getting through it with your team is a bonding experience. Working with such intensity also means being exponentially more satisfied when your campaigns take shape and are a success with the target audience and client.
3. Versatility is the key to success
During my internship at Citoyen, I had to be versatile. Communications is a broad field, we have a lot of clients, and the jobs we are asked to do vary widely. There is really no such thing as a “typical day.” Whatever campaign is currently underway is what determines the day’s tasks and deliverables. For example, several days ago I had to write a press release for a client, prepare media mailings for a new product collection, and participate in a brainstorming session for an upcoming campaign.
I really had a chance to do a little bit of everything and I am happy to be able to say that my internship was much more than doing the boring jobs nobody wants to do. It’s not only validating to work on interesting projects but it’s also an unparalleled learning experience.
4. You have to be able to land on your feet
Dealing with the unexpected is also part of the job. You have to be quick, agile, and prepared. Given the number of people you interact with, you have to be able to anticipate potential issues and do your best to avoid them. When they can’t be avoided you have to take a proactive approach to find creative solutions as quickly as possible. No matter what happens the world keeps turning.
5. Effort pays off
Nothing is more satisfying than seeing your work get recognized for its merit and that is exactly what pleased me the most at Citoyen Optimum. The team is really not stingy with praise for good work, which is all the more motivating to keep you going!
I strongly encourage students in public relations and related fields to do a public relations internship at Citoyen Optimum. It is an extraordinary place to start your professional career. It certainly has been for me and I am extremely grateful!