Leaving Australia’s summer heat for a bitter winter in London was one of the many considerations that kept me up at night, but despite the many daunting prospects I packed my bags and headed to the UK.
With little experience working in HR, and even less experience working in a PR company, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to try something so outside my comfort zone. As expected, this leap of faith was full of challenges and obstacles, but it was by far one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve been lucky enough to have undertaken.
I stepped into LEWIS for the first time, wearing several layers of thermals and ready to be the ‘new girl’. From the moment I sat down, I felt part of a team and was given interesting jobs.
As far as work went, my daily tasks were more or less what I expected I would be doing. I had hands-on experience with recruitment, appraisal tracking, maintaining employee data bases and much more. I learnt all about the skills that you need to work in HR, as well as what makes for a good HR employee. Interestingly, I also saw what the department looks for in future HR employees. Big MUSTS include; social and interpersonal skills, adaptability and approachability (nobody likes a grump). In short, I gained a fair amount of insight into the nuts and bolts of HR.
Alongside this, I also got to experience how a global integrated agency functions. Monthly meetings were a prime time where I heard team members from other areas of the business talk about the different projects they’d been working on. Huddled together in a tightly-packed space, names of top clients and partnered brands would be dropped here and there, and facts and figures would fly around the room in open discussion. If you asked me who exactly these clients are or what these figures added up to I couldn’t tell you. But what I can tell you, is there is a lot of work that goes on inside a global agency. Much more than 6 weeks enabled me to comprehend.
Beyond the work I also got to meet some fantastic people! Through random lunch dates, walks to the local supermarket, pub drinks and fun workplace discussions, I quickly learnt that those around me were not only interested to learn more about me, but I was equally as interested to learn about them. I was made to feel so welcome and part of the team from day one. If you had to ask me what my most favourite part of this internship was I would have to say the people. Closely followed by the gluten free bagels work provided every Friday morning and the kitchen’s never-ending coffee supply.
All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed my time as an HR intern at LEWIS and loved meeting so many wonderful people. A great experience I won’t ever forget!