Posted on August 1, 2014 by: Nicole Chun, Project Manager Intern
As I finish up my summer internship here at Click Here Labs and The Richards Group, I wanted to spend a little time to reflect and hopefully provide useful information for those of you who are interested in becoming a future project management intern or are curious about the advertising industry as a whole.
Anyone can look up The Richards Group online and find out that it has one of the nation’s top advertising internship programs and that it’s one of the best advertising agencies at which to work, but it’s hard to know exactly what you’re signing up for until you’re actually thrown into the fire.
Interning at The Richards Group and Click Here Labs
An internship at The Richards Group is a great place to learn and experience what it’s like to work full time in an advertising agency. They do not kid around when they say they treat their interns like new full-time hires.
You will have many projects, tasks and responsibilities.
You will be held to high standards.
You will be expected to sign in by 8:30 a.m. every morning.
You will be working 40 hours a week, and maybe even longer some weeks.
But if you are truly willing to work hard and learn every day and if you really want a feel of what working in advertising is like, this is the agency to come to. Everyone around you, no matter what his or her position or discipline, is always willing to help you out and talk to you. They truly care about you, and they want you to learn as much as you can while you’re around.
Now, those are things with which I think interns of all disciplines here at The Richards Group will agree, but as a full-service agency, The Richards Group has many disciplines. The one I will focus on explaining in more detail is digital project management.
What Is Digital Project Management?
Digital project managers are the midwives, babysitters and problem-solvers of all the digital projects The Richards Group has. Website? Email? Online ads? Mobile app? You name it. Click Here Labs does it. And you can bet that some project manager is running around like a chicken without its head making sure everything is going smoothly and on track in terms of quality, time and cost.
A good project manager is really a jack-of-all-trades. She’s knowledgeable enough about each discipline with which she works to be dangerous.
Stick a page of code in front of her? She won’t cry…immediately.
Proofing? Consider that edited copy doc done.
User experience? Psychiatrist mode activated.
The list goes on and on.
Advice from a Digital PM Intern
I have enjoyed every day of this internship. You know you’ve found the right job when you can wake up every morning without the feeling of dread at having to face “just another workday.” So I highly recommend this internship (if you couldn’t already tell from all my gushing). Having said that, I don’t have a 1-2-3 step-by-step guide for you to automatically get hired, but I do have four pieces of advice to offer.
- Read The Peaceable Kingdom by Stan Richards: This is an extremely valuable book to read to understand the unique work culture that Stan Richards has instilled in this agency.
- Know The Richards Group’s and Click Here Labs’ advertisements and clients: A lot of people are interested in advertising. Advertising is cool, funky, creative, etc. But what will truly set you apart as an applicant is knowing the specific advertisements that the agency to which you’re applying has produced.
- Be digitally savvy and knowledgeable: If you’re applying for a digital project management position, this should be a given. You cannot be an effective project manager if you don’t understand what the people with whom you are working are telling you. If you can’t communicate with front-end and back-end developers, digital designers and other digital disciplines, chances are you won’t be able to manage your digital projects.
- Ask good and smart questions: This is important for any interview you will have. Interviewers love smart questions that show you have knowledge of the company and the work that it does. Not to mention, you will probably learn some interesting and useful stuff from the answers you receive in return.