It happens every year…
College students prepare their resumes for that big internship with a huge company. They nail the interview and can’t wait to get started doing important work…with the copy machine.
If you’ve ever worked for a large company, you might have had a similar experience. Many college students are finding that working for a large company lacks the educational or hands-on experience they need to create value in their chosen field.
You see, in the past two years I have turned down three Fortune 500 companies to work for small businesses. This choice has allowed me to gain invaluable experience that will benefit me both in the short run and the long run.
Here are a few reasons why you should start looking for an internship with a small business:
You get to wear many hats at a small business.
Working at a small business you typically won’t be doing the same mundane tasks over and over again. You might have a variety of responsibilities that are hands on because they don’t have as much cash to invest in a single role. This will help you become well rounded and can open up more opportunities down the road in the field you desire.
You learn how the whole business operates.
Being at a small business you might be in constant contact with the entire team rather than just a branch of a corporation. You are able to see how the entire business operates from the initial sale to the back end financing, rather than just a single portion of the business. This allows you to make more educated decisions in your field and gives you more importance to your work.
Your ideas are easier to implement.
At a small business, your ideas are more likely to be implemented because there are fewer hoops to to jump through. Having innovative ideas is so valuable to the life of a company and having a smaller workforce makes it easy to implement fast.
Small Businesses are more likely to create a full-time role for you.
Small businesses often have some flexibility if the capital is available to create a job for you. Large corporations often have industry standard positions that aren’t easy to change without jumping through some hoops so stick to the small business.
If you’re looking for experience where your actions truly contribute to the overall success of a business, choose to intern with a small business. It’s the way to go.