Hints and help for work experience

Make sure you turn up on time

Turning up on time (or even 5-10 minutes early) will let you your supervisors know that you’re keen to learn and that you’re taking your work experience seriously.

It’s important to look the part.

Think about what the people you’re working with might wear, and try to dress in a similar way. Dressing inappropriately will make people think you’re not taking work experience seriously. This isn’t to say go and buy a $500 suit, just use what you’ve got, or borrow something from a friend. If you’re still not sure what to wear, you can always call your employer and ask.

Recognise the opportunity.

You never know where a week’s work experience might take you. Down the track you might be in line for a position with the company you did the work experience for, or working with people you meet during work experience.

Be proactive.

Don’t sit around waiting for someone to tell you what to do. Approach people around the office and ask if you can help out.

Be enthusiastic.

Your supervisor is more likely to treat you with respect if you do the same for them. So try to be enthusiastic about the work, even if you’re asked to do menial tasks like shredding paper.

Take time to sit back and absorb the environment.

It’s amazing how much you will learn just from being in a work environment. Observe how the office operates, and what each person’s role is. Do employees work together? Or do they work as individuals?

Have a chat.

Talk to your colleagues about what they do and how they came to be in that position (i.e. what study and training did they do?) Ask them if they have any advice on getting into the indsutry. Get a business card or contact details.

Don’t race out of the office at 5 o’clock on the dot!

If it won’t take all night, finish off the task you’re doing, and ask the person you’re working with if there’s anything else they need you to do before you leave for the night.

Ask for feedback.

Ask your supervisor or whoever you’ve been working with for feedback on the tasks you’ve completed. What did you do well? What can you improve?


Australian Curriculum Links:

Work Studies/Year 10/Career and life design: career development and management
Apply knowledge of self to career decision-making processes.

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