It’s the penultimate day of my internship and I’ve finally found the time to write the ominous Intern Diary. I’ll do my best to avoid all clichés while describing my time in the Brushfield Street office, but it’ll be difficult as phrases such as ‘time flew by’ and ‘it was an incredible learning experience’, definitely ring true.
With those cringe-worthy sentiments out of the way however, I’ll try to sum up the six-month internship as best as I can in the form of some hopefully helpful advice to whoever sits in this seat after me.
1) Listen. To everything. Working in a relatively small team means you hear conversations pertaining to all aspects of running the festival; you’ll leave here not only knowing more than you ever thought you would about the core principles of arts and festival marketing, but also understanding how everything fits together, and what marketing contributes to the greater whole. It’s also useful when you’ve run out of ideas of things to put on Facebook, which during my time resulted in things like our former Programme Manager: Festivals James’s appearance on Bargain Hunt being shared with a slightly bigger audience than he had anticipated (he gave his consent beforehand).
2) The X-drive: forget about applying logic. While you’ll probably be able to navigate your way around the photography after a while, you’ll never quite understand it (proven to me once again yesterday when asked to locate some logos). Not to worry though, Michael has a map imprinted into his brain, ask him for the link and you’ll be fine.
3) Say yes to everything (within reason). Giving a helping hand to others in the team will open up new insights and allow for interesting opportunities, like climbing onto the roof of the Village Underground and hanging out in the old tube carriages, among more serious career-related ones, obviously.
4) Keep some sort of journal. I started one, and then as things got busier I kind of forgot about it. You see, hear, and do so many things that it’s impossible to remember all of it; I’m taking a mental break for a few weeks and part of that time will be spent writing down my reflections of the past six months and making a record of all the things I’ll take with me to my next position (future employers may register their interest here). What I won’t need to write down to remember though, is the incredible kindness and positivity that lives in this office, which has made each day an enjoyable and enriching one.
While I’m typing, there’s a marathon of meetings taking place behind me about plans for programmes and projects for future festivals; all I can think to say is: lucky you, to everyone who will get to be involved. It sounds like an exciting time that I would love to have been a part of, and will most certainly be found in the audience for. The final piece of advice that I’d like to end with then, is to just enjoy every minute of your time here, because it’ll be over before you know it. Looks like a few cliché phrases slipped in there after all, sorry!