In Part 1 of this blog series, the first component of heating up your internship responsibilities was seeing if you could spend your downtime doing other important things, such as gaining mentorship or looking through company-offered resources. However, even after trying that, there are situations when you simply need more work. Let’s discuss the how’s, why’s, and when’s.
WHEN to ask for more work:
- When your previously assigned projects take far less time than anticipated
- When, even after trying to find other things to do for an hour or two, you still don’t have additional work to complete
- You have gotten intern-like tasks and are ready for more responsibilities
WHY to ask for more work:
- It might be fun to cruise and spend time doing other things, but asking for more work will help you look more dedicated and professional
- Asking for more work and adding more value to your internship and company will help you gain more skills that will help you in your future coursework and that you can mention:
- On your resume
- In interviews
- While networking
- If you are returning full-time or for another internship at the same place, asking for more work and getting put on more projects will expose you to more roles and opportunities within a company, which is definitely advantageous
HOW to ask for more work:
- During a casual conversation or meeting with a manager or whoever is in charge of your workload as you’re interning
- Mention that you recently finished your current projects and that you would love to jump on something new if possible
- Ask for another assignment while going over your work for a previous one
- Wrapping up an assignment as an intern almost always means a time to check your work with a boss, so if everything looks good and there’s no changes to be made, you can say something like “Thank you so much for going over this with me, I’m looking forward to starting something new! Are there new projects that I can help out with?”
- Over email
- You can ask your supervisor for more assignments over email
- If it’s a little nerve-racking, try editing the template below:
Hi (Supervisor Name),
I hope you are having a great day! I have been working on (Assignment 1) and it is almost done. I will send it over (Date or Time)! I have also worked on (Assignment 2), but am waiting on another department to review it before I can complete it. I’m very excited to keep contributing to the team, so I was wondering if there are any other projects or tasks I can take on at this time. If scheduling a time to talk about upcoming projects and opportunities is in any way easier for you, my availability is (Availability).
Of course, change the template according to your circumstances and also what you want to ask for, whether it’s simply more work or different kinds of work. For more tips, click here. Good luck interning!