Business school is full of conversations with and about different companies, especially during the recruiting process. Inevitably, you will hear companies talk about hiring people who are “the right fit.” Increasingly, company culture is something that differentiates companies and allows us to really envision what type of workplace environment we can see ourselves in. As companies search to bring on the right people, as job seekers, we must not forget that it is just as important for us to ensure that companies have everything we are looking for in our own professional and personal development. Keren Davy (NYU Stern, ’16) talks about the steps she took – both throughout the recruiting process and during her internship this summer – to make sure her company was right for her.
MBASchooled: What steps did you take to find the right company for you during the internship process?
Keren: I did extensive company research, from low engagement activities such as viewing the company website and turning on Google alerts to high engagement activities such as setting up informational interviews and coffee chats with current and past employees, both interns and full timers.
MBASchooled: What advice do you have for students currently going into the internship search?
Keren: Do not underestimate the importance of cultural fit. A company might be a great place to have on your resume, but if you can’t stand to work there you have to decide if it is worth it. Be open minded because you might really enjoy working at the company that is not necessarily seen as the most sexy or innovative.
MBASchooled: Did you have any goals for yourself this summer at the internship?
Keren: Yes – I wanted to challenge myself analytically because I am coming from such a strong strategic marketing background. I got a taste of it this summer through my mini project work and I plan to take a modeling class during my last year of my MBA.
MBASchooled: During your time at the company, how did you proactively learn more to make sure it was the best fit for you?
Keren: I made sure to follow up with those people I had built relationships with during recruiting once I got to my summer internship, which wasn’t weird because I had been keeping them updated during my first year at school. I leveraged these people to get their “real take” on the company and felt that I got pretty honest answers because they already knew me.
MBASchooled: In meeting different executives at your internship, are there any themes or consistent lessons in leadership that you observed this summer?
Keren: I observed that many of the executives had taken a risk – across functions or through an international assignment.
MBASchooled: How have you grown and developed personally and professionally as a result of your internship?
Keren: Most definitely – I was challenged in ways I had never previously been and I feel that I grew a great deal both personally and professionally. Personally, I was away from my fiancé and my geographic comfort zone, so I had to really make a place away from home my home for the summer. And professionally, I was given a great deal of autonomy which was very nice but also very scary because I felt a great deal of ownership