Thursday, July 22, 2010

Interns, Do Your Part!

This week at work has been…frustrating. I know I’ve mentioned a few times that I’m now the only intern in my department at the magazine, but this week my workload really began to affect me. My tasks for this week included gathering products and helping the beauty editor set up for a run-through, requesting samples from toy companies for a holiday gift guide, brainstorming ideas for the December issue, and harassing people to send pictures for various features. I’m good at budgeting my time, so everything was going smoothly until I got a phone call from a woman at a company we needed pictures from. I’ve been in contact with this woman because I had to take over the assignment of ANOTHER intern who wasn’t showing up to the office. Seriously people, what is going on!

The woman told me that the other intern had emailed her, as well as all the other companies that are part of the feature, and sent conflicting information from what I had told them. I went to talk to the photo editor and told him I was confused — was this my assignment or the other intern’s? What was the correct information? Now that the other intern is doing her work, should I leave it up to her to contact the different companies? None of his answers were in my favor. The other intern did send out the correct information, which reflected badly on me since I had asked the companies for something different. The photo editor told me to continue contacting the companies, so now all of my contacts are baffled because they don’t know who to respond to — me or the other intern!

I’m very frustrated because I don’t think this situation is being handled well. It does not make sense to have two interns that aren’t communicating with each other trying to get photos from the same companies, and I don’t think it reflects well on the magazine to be this inconsistent. I would never say anything to the photo editor because I know my job is to assist in any way possible. Still, I’m so busy with other things that I wish I didn’t also have to do the work of someone who isn’t in the office.

I know I just complained a lot, but other than that situation, my internship has been great. In fact, my week improved a lot after the ideas meeting we had for the December issue. Each editor presents her ideas for the sections they oversee, so as the intern I was the last to present. I got really great feedback! The editors liked a bunch of my ideas and are even using one of them as an article for the December issue. I was nervous presenting because I didn’t know how my ideas would be received, but now I feel a lot more confident. Maybe I can make it in this industry!

Optimistically yours,
Lifestyle Intern

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