18th May 2012, by Viktoriya Yordanova
In the search for happiness and satisfaction, people look for different experiences to enrich their lives. Trying something is the best way to learn. The process of acquiring knowledge through experience happens naturally and, according to studies, it has much greater impact on memory than any other information received by the brain.
Nowadays, most undergrads have only had part-time jobs and don’t know if they will fit into the industry they’re considering working in. That’s why placements are so popular and essential for professional development. Work experience was something I wanted to do, as I aimed to expand my knowledge, gain business skills, become more employable and network too.
The WAA experience started while I was searching for a year-long placement. I was lucky to be invited for an interview and my visit made me fall in love with WAA. I was given the chance to work with some of the best advertising practitioners in the UK and I embraced the opportunity with excitement and eagerness.
As part of the ‘New Business’ department, my responsibilities included researching new and prospective clients, helping the team with their daily assignments and doing admin work when required (interns usually find this daunting, but I believe it was extremely valuable).
As this internship was my first degree-related work experience, I felt that I learned the most in the very first weeks, in terms of how an agency operates and how the marketing theory I was learning at university works in practice. I was involved with real projects for clients and the business awareness I built is incomparable to any other learning experience I’ve had. The abundant support from Ellen, Aimie and Cassie made my stay at WAA valuable and fascinating. The work was supplemented by many rewards, such as occasional free candies for the WAA staff, as well as many funny moments, like the situation when I thought I won an iPad from one of our client’s online contests, which was actually a sleeping EYE-pad, but I did let the whole agency know about it (and subsequently laugh about it!).
WAA is much more than an integrated agency. The reason why it’s one of the Sunday Times 100 Best Small Companies to Work For is that it feels like a family. Once they take you on board, they share their knowledge and make sure you get involved in every little bit of the work. The WAA internship gave me both practical and theoretical knowledge and improved my work skills; plus, it made me more confident and definitely more employable – proof of this is my success on the very first interview for a placement I got after I joined the agency.
As Leonard Huxley says, “Experience is not what happens to a man. It is what a man does with what happens to him.” So, if you are a proactive person who wants to learn something more about business and advertising, and who wants to develop their work skills in a wonderful environment amongst creative and friendly people, I would not hesitate to recommend the WAA internship.
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