1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I enjoyed the majority of the internship - especially getting to work on a wide variety of projects and types of work (from making pitch books, to modelling on excel, conducting research and more). However, negatives were some long periods of boring, mindless work, and constantly being expected to work late into the night regardless of how important or urgent the work was.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt highly valued by my colleagues throughout the entire internship. Whenever I had done a piece of work, colleagues were quick to thank me for my time and effort, and would normally tell me how helpful I was being to them. This was also reflected in the respect I was given - despite being new to many aspects of the job, colleagues were respectful of my knowledge and intelligence when explaining things to me.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I was given a good amount of support throughout the internship. We were assigned "buddies" who would check in with how we were finding things every now and then. My buddy also came to see how I was after I got some bad feedback from a Director on some of my work. The guidance we were given was also very good - I always felt like I knew exactly what I was required to do when I was given a task, and always felt comfortable asking questions if I was uncertain about anything.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
How busy I was varied drastically from day to day. On some occasions I had multiple people ask me to do multiple pieces of work for them within half an hour of each other, meaning I had to communicate with them to ascertain which order to complete the tasks in, and then often work late into the night to finish them. On a few occasions I had nothing to do, and even after asking around the team for more work was left without much to do.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given a satisfying amount of responsibility during my internship, although I think part of this came down to a large number of the established employees being away on holiday meaning responsibility was passed down to me. These responsibilities included producing pitch books, conducting research projects, and writing reports sent to client by myself. Naturally all the work was thoroughly checked through by established employees before being sent to clients though.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
The skills and training I received will be very useful in my degree studies and beyond. The skills of time management, attention to detail, professionalism, and structuring work will be very helpful in my degree and working life going forwards. Furthermore, the training and skills I developed using powerpoint, and modelling on excel are valuable skills that will be useful in life and future careers.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The general atmosphere in the office was pleasant and positive for most of the time. People were friendly and talkative and often had team cake for people's birthdays or special occasions which helped boost the mood. On multiple occasions though there were raised voices and tensions rose which created a more stressful working environment. One one occasion, a full on shouting argument started between two employees in a meeting I was in which put me in an uncomfortable situation.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The internship was perfectly organised and set up from the start to the end. The communication ahead of starting was great, the starting process was very straightforward, the training was useful and well structured, and the review and feedback sessions were well organised and very helpful. Overall the communication and organisation was faultless, and I was very impressed.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
I felt like the firm invested in my development quite a lot during the internship. At the start we had a week of training on finance, and some of the various tools we would use during our work (namely excel, powerpoint, factset etc). After that I received a couple more training sessions on more specialised tools for my work, and various colleagues took time to explain how to do things when new topics or tools arose. However later on in the internship I felt like it was up to me to teach myself things, or was told it was not worth me learning new tools as there was not enough time left in the internship to make it worthwhile.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Despite receiving a graduate job offer from the firm a few weeks after the end of the internship I decided the prospect of having a job with them was not appealing to me. This was because I felt I was not passionate enough about the work to justify working such long hours on an everyday basis. However if I had found that I had a passion for the work I would not have hesitated to accept the job offer, and would definitely have wanted to work at Rothschild.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There were joining drinks and leaving drinks which were organised by the company and were good fun and well attended. But other than that it was quite rare to socialise much with the other interns. This was mainly because everyone was working such long hours that they did not have time to socialise, and preferred to go home to sleep than go out and party. However the atmosphere between the interns was very friendly and it would be normal to chat if you bumped into other interns at lunch or in the lift.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Quite high. London prices.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
I'm sure the nightlife in London is brilliant, but sadly I did not get much of an opportunity to sample it as I was normally too busy working, or too tired to make it out.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There were a few good opportunities to get involved with activities outside of work, but these were somewhat limited. My team within the company had a volunteering day in which we helped complete some gardening and building work in a local nature reserve, although not all teams had an opportunity like this. The internship also had a fundraising challenge that ran throughout its duration, in which we had to raise as much money as possible for charity in a team of interns, using whatever method or methods we wanted. Other than these there was not much opportunity or time to do things outside of work.