The work pace in the office is extremely fast in order to keep hitting deadlines. Being an intern is not an easy job at first. It was hard to keep up with the pace and constant movement around the office, it was the first challenge I encountered but eventually I got the hang of it.
I love the fast pace and always having something to do, but I get flustered at times because I want to be on top of projects but most importantly, effectively and efficiently completing them. This was a little of a struggle since I am used to being on my own schedule and doing things at my own pace.
In school, we are given plenty of time to complete projects, and constant reminders of how we will definitely not have as much time to work on projects in the real world. It’s true. And while freelancing I usually give clients 2-3 weeks depending on the project. This also gives me ample time to review and make sure every detail is perfect.
So this was an extreme change for me to figure out how to complete these projects at a 10X faster pace while being as efficient and hitting that deadline which is usually next day.
In addition, multi-tasking skills are crazy important. While working on projects, emails are being sent with expected immediate responses and follow-ups on completed projects that needs corrections to be made. Plus, the office is consumed with numerous conversations happening at once, usually from other cubicles about projects and what needs to be done etc, you’d think we’re selling stocks on Wall Street. This took some time for me to get used to. It may seem chaotic but work always gets done and on time.
After a few days, I realize that being overwhelmed is not an option. So how did I get the hang of it? The solution was setting an agenda for myself, I would give myself an estimated time for each project and check emails at certain times throughout the day, like every half an hour or so. It was hard at first, especially because you’re constantly trying not to mess up, but then again we’re interns right? It’s a learning experience, trial and error basically… I think i’ll talk about that on the next blog entry. Fact is, I don’t want to mess up. After a few days, my solution became like clockwork.
So my typical day is not so typical. First thing in the morning, I meet with the creative director, Russell, where he tells me the projects we will be working on and the deadlines we have to meet. Typical. The not so typical part is that everyday is sometimes absolutely different, which is what I love about this internship. Some days I wont be in the office for half the day, because I’ll be shooting on location somewhere in the city, other days I may be confined to my desk retouching, or in the studio shooting products.
So my first few days were those of which I spent confined to the desk. The company is currently redesigning a new website. So during the first week, my first project was to create contact sheets of model shots that were taken the previous week, to be uploaded to the website. After doing so, the creative director would go through it, make his final selections, which I then retouched and was uploaded unto the website. This is more tedious than it sounds, it took two full work days to complete this… NOT my favorite project, but the creative director did like the retouched images.
The takeaway; the chaos is good. Being able to be productive in a fast pace environment really boosts your skills. It makes you more attentive to detail and keeps the workflow going.