1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I enjoyed learning about the world of work. My internship at The Body Shop was a real job and not just photocopying/admin work. This internship felt like I was thrown into the deep-end, which sometimes was scary but was overall a good thing. I am a stronger person and have learnt more about my working style.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
My team made sure I felt like part of the team very early in my year. We have monthly team meetings alternating in the two head offices and I was invited and expected to attend all of them. I had time to share my work and projects with the team, making me feel I brought value and a fresh perspective to the team.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I prefer to be quite independent so I appreciate that my manager allowed me to be autonomous. She trusted me to get my work done but also to come to her when I had issues, questions or needed feedback. We also had bi-weekly 1-2-1 catch-ups which allowed us to discuss projects.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
My role was mostly ad-hoc work, which means I was often not too busy. This meant I was able to support other teams and learn about other functions in the business which I appreciated. Also, I was able to spend time almost daily on learning and development through the LinkedIn Learning platform.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I enjoyed being solely responsible for The Body Shop's online presence as an employer. I plan, design and distribute the content seen on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Glassdoor and create the branding strategy for careers. I can leave The Body Shop with evidence of the skills I developed on my internship.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I study Journalism Studies so my internship has helped developed vital digital media skills. I will need these skills for a dynamic career in digital and online media. I have learned to balance different projects, which is a skill I'll need in work always.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere in The Body Shop International Limited's head office in East Croydon is generally really chill and fun filled. We always have random things happening from a pop-up clothes store to free drinks! Sometimes, it can be quite stressful working here however.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
There is no one person who looks after the interns. It is shared across the recruitment team, learning and development team and general HR team. This makes it very confusing when we have questions. Having one person looking after the whole program would make it a lot more organised and 'seamless'.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
The Learning and Development team put on different training sessions such as Excel training and Unconscious Bias training I found these very valuable. This team also looked after an Intern Swap where we were able to shadow another intern in another role that we were interested in.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Staff Sales/Staff Shop
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Future prospects within the organisation are not very appealing to me right now. I enjoyed working at The Body Shop and appreciated the time spent there but if I do working there in the future, it will be in the distant future.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
The interns got along really well very quickly. I implemented an intern whatsapp during the first week which allowed us to communicate. Early on we used it primarily to ask questions we were embarrassed to ask our colleagues e.g. how the printer worked. We then started using it to organise out-of-work events.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
The head office in East Croydon is right next to BoxPark, which is great for food and socialising. However, it is very expensive - I'm sure most of our pay goes on BoxPark!
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?