HERE ARE SOME VERY VALUABLE TIPS FROM ALUMNI WHO HAVE CHOSEN AVC (AUDIOVISUAL COMMUNICATION)-RELATED CAREERS
|TELLING IT LIKE IT IS: Faye D'Souza, assistant editor of personal finance at ET Now in Mumbai and also the anchor of the "Investors' Guide" show on the channel, offers expert advice (see below) as a Commitscion and as a successful media professional.|
- FAYE D'SOUZA (Class of 2004), ET Now, Mumbai
- When Faye D'Souza sent us her write-up for publication here, she was working with ET Now. She has since moved on. Today, in May 2018, she is the Executive Editor of Mirror Now and a news anchor with a legion of fans and a huge bouquet of accolades. Most recently, Faye was honoured with the RedInk Journalist of the Year Award — see pictures below.
|WELL-DESERVED HONOUR: Faye D'Souza and the legendary Mark Tully at the RedInk Awards ceremony in Mumbai on May 18, 2018.|
- AAISHA SABIR (Class of 2019), Mirror Now, Mumbai
- Being yourself
- Daily newspaper habit
|ONE FOR THE ALBUM: Aaisha Sabir, right, with fellow Commits intern Ahana Bose and Faye D'Souza in the Mirror Now newsroom in Mumbai on May 11, 2018.|
- PRIYANKA SALIGRAM (Class of 2009), Kuwait Times, Kuwait City
b. Be genuinely interested and ask a lot of questions. You'll end up annoying the slackers but the hard workers will be more than happy to answer your questions.
c. Live at the place for those six weeks and absorb every little thing about the kind of work being done. And don't stick to your mobile phone, messaging or talking, because it screams "I'M BORED AS HELL, SOMEONE GET ME OUTTA HERE!"
d. Don't dress like a smartass. No funky accessories, loud make-up, iPod dangling from your ears, beach footwear, clingy stuff that shows skin, or anything that will grab unnecessary attention. It's best to be dressed formally.
e. Please make sure you smell great; chew mint, drown yourself in perfume, and ensure that you don't smell human even after 12 hours of work.
f. Finally, the most important thing is to have fun and enjoy the whole experience. After all this, if the place turns out to be a dump, nobody will force you at gun-point to join. If the place feels like home, you don't have to force anyone at gun-point to offer you the job.
|PAPER TIGER: Having a boss like Jamie Etheridge (seated centre) made all the difference to her internship at Kuwait Times, says Priyanka Saligram (standing right).|
Of course, the main thing that worked for me was having an irreplaceable and wonderful boss, Jamie Etheridge, who gave me space to make mistakes and learn; she understood me better than I understood myself. If I had worked with someone else who was part-tyrant and full-anal retentive workaholic, forget being offered a job, my internship letter would have been printed on used toilet paper.
I wish the juniors a happy and productive internship and hope they get whatever they want from these two months.
- NILOFER D'SOUZA (Class of 2009), Forbes India, Bangalore
b. Be yourself. (If you're an introvert, don't think you need to be an extrovert to shine in the workplace. All you need to do is get work done.)
- DEBMALYA DUTTA (Class of 2011), The Statesman, Kolkata
And make a big effort to ignore those "you-look-like-an-intern" looks. :-)
- SHIVRAM SUJIR (Class of 2011), Bangalore
Make sure of your job location and start making inquiries about the best route and mode of transport to get there. If your internship is in a city you are not familiar with, find someone who knows the city well and talk to them about details like buses, trains, auto fares, the attitude of the people, and also safety measures that you need to keep in mind.
Use Facebook to make contacts with friends of friends in the new city in advance.
Once you embark on your journey, here are some things you might want to consider:
a. First things first. Be mentally prepared to get the worst treatment from your employer. Interns form the lowest step in the corporate ladder (below the office boy) and some pretend interns don't exist at all. Some of the most boring and uninteresting work may trickle down to you. The good part is that most of you will be lucky enough to work in places that have a great work environment but please do not take it for granted. If your boss is a grouch, take things in your stride. Remember, it is you who is getting more out of this deal than they.
b. Second, please note that training and teaching you is nowhere on the priority list of the person you will report to. What you want to learn and understand is completely up to you. The first three days are very important to make that first impression on your colleagues. After the formal introduction to your colleagues make it a point to go and meet everyone over the next three days and politely inquire about their role in the organisation. It's okay to ask them their names again but this time try to remember them. This exercise will help you get a larger picture of the workings of the organisation. However, the golden rule is to observe people and approach them only when they seem to be free to talk.
c. Third, DO NOT complain or bitch about the work you have to do to anyone in the organisation or even on the phone when you are on the premises. Things have a way of reaching the higher management in ways, and for reasons, you do not yet understand. Many people will get overly friendly with you and might start sharing their grudges against the organisation. They have been through the grind but you are the newbie here. So take a neutral stance and play it safe. Office politics is something we all need to live with, but during your internship, you are better off as a spectator.
All these tips are not meant to scare you but to make your internship a pleasant experience. If I have to share my example, my first internship with the NGO has now given me the opportunity to shoot my first independent documentary film. This happened mainly because of two reasons. One, during my internship I managed to develop a great working relationship with my colleagues, and, two, I have always made it a point to keep in touch with them.
So make the most of this opportunity, my fellow Commitscions. Become GREAT.
- KAUSTAV DATTA (Class of 2011), Shree Venkatesh Films, Kolkata
b. Perform all tasks given by your immediate boss with a smile on your face.
c. At times when you get a tongue-lashing even if it's not your fault, don't get disheartened.
d. In a production house you will need to take on responsibilities (apply RP Sir's formula: take the initiative); no one will ask you to do this or that.
e. Your internship may be a "production" internship, but if you are asked to do data entry or photocopying tasks, don't get frustrated.
f. Those who are opting for production, the magic word you should always keep in mind is "coordination". Those who are going to Mumbai must keep in mind that the first few days will be very tough, so you'll need to be mentally strong.
g. Knowledge of editing can give your internship extra mileage (that's what happened in my case).
h. Try to learn as much as possible.
i. At at the end of the internship, your boss should say to you, "Contact us when your course ends." That's how you will know you have had a successful internship.
- AAKRITI KHANNA (Class of 2011), TBWA, Bangalore
This is the time for you to experiment and explore your area of interest. Concentrate on learning more about how the industry functions.
In the end, you might be pleased or disappointed with the whole experience.
However, no learning goes to waste; at least you will have a clear idea about what kind of work is involved in your area of interest and what is the potential for growth in that industry.
- DOLY DYNA (Class of 2011), Bangalore
- SWAGATA MAJUMDAR (Class of 2006), Red FM, Kolkata
I am sure you'll do a GREAT job, juniors. Best of luck!
- SHRUTHI S. (Class of 2008), Bangalore
This is my own personal campaign: Don't limit yourself to media, PR, and the corporate sector. Look beyond to where you can make a bigger impact, for example, the non-profit and the public sectors. Even if you want to earn big bucks in the corporate sector, make sure you don't forget your civic duties.
Enough with the preaching. Good luck and have loads of fun. And remember what Steve Jobs said: "Stay hungry, stay foolish."
- SOUVIK CHAKRABORTY (Class of 2008), Visage/Getty Images, Bangalore
You should not limit yourself in the kind of work you do; instead, you should be smart enough to complete every task with full responsibility because there will be people monitoring your work and giving feedback to superiors.
Also, many interns think that if they are going for an internship with a production house, then reading up books on creative writing or notes on marketing will not help. But the fact is that it all counts and you'll figure this out only after you begin your internship.
One more thing: This internship is important not only as a career landmark but also as a way to build contacts. I advise you to keep your ears and eyes open and grab any opportunity that comes along to get to know your colleagues better. These contacts will definitely be useful later.
- NEHA MEHTA (Class of 2009), Kolkata
|MAKING NEWS: Neha Mehta was till recently with Times Now in Bangalore.|
- NANDINI HEGDE (Class of 2010), Freelance writer, Bangalore
1. You must be on your toes.
2. You may be asked to make PowerPoint slides but this is something Commitscions can do well.
3. Have a lot of patience. If you don't get work be patient. Conversely, if you get a lot of work, deal with it... patiently.
4. Some people insist on perfection, some insist on the speed at which the work is done. Some insist on both. Figure out what it is that your organisation expects.
5. Most organisations ask interns to do research. (Stop yawning!) Just do it.
And here are some tips:
1. Chill and don't take things TOO seriously.
I was very nervous when I went to Red Chillies in Mumbai. Eventually, I learnt to relax and not be too stressed.
2. Remember to have FUN!
When I was at Red Chillies, I was too busy worrying about whether I was doing my work properly. Of course, I realised this after the internship was over. But I had fun when I worked at Fremantle. (Kinda!)
3. When in doubt, ask questions.
4. Don't hesitate to share your ideas or opinions.
5. AND DON'T FORGET TO EAT! (Yes, it can happen!)
- KOYEL MITRA (Class of 2011), AETN-18 History Channel (Network 18 Group), New Delhi
If you are really interested in television this is your chance, make the most of it. Take the initiative, talk to people around you, show them that you are eager to learn and work. This is your best opportunity to find out where your real interest lies.
Over here this is the funda: If you don't work no one will come and tell you anything and at the end of your internship, you will be given your certificate without any problem.
But if you really do put in an effort you are bound to get noticed. And then you just might get a call back from here!
So all the best, guys! I am always here to help you.