This week at work I finally started to feel settled into a routine and felt like I knew what I was doing when I was asked to perform different tasks. The week went by pretty fast for the most part as my company was preparing to have a day off the next week for a Czech National Holiday. This meant that they had huge shipments going out every day of the week, which in turn meant I had a lot of work to be doing form preparing delivery notes to packaging labels to transportation coordination. These are all tasks that I learned in my first two weeks and felt pretty comfortable with, however having to do so much of everything and all at once threw me for a little bit of a loop. The main challenge I find myself having is that my company mainly serves two major auto manufacturers, but depending on who we are shipping to the entire process to prepare a shipment is completely different. Although they are two completely different processes the parts for each get mixed up in my head quite a bit. My supervisor gave me the steps essentially laid out for each and I’ve been doing my best to follow that but have decided that in my downtime this week I’m going to redo those guidelines adding some specific parts that are crucial but missing.
Other than the occasional question or two I definitely feel like I am settling into work better than I thought I would after my first day here. Unfortunately, most of Europe operates in a way that companies take 1-2 weeks off during the summer and both customers we serve have parts of their break while I am here, meaning that operations are starting to slow down. In the downtime, my company is planning on transitioning to a new platform that will make their system for processing shipments flow better. I am excited that they are implementing this while I am here so I can see both the old platform and the new to understand what the differences will be. The only downside is that only one person in the company knows how to use the platform right now and can only teach one person every few days, and considering I am one of the last people who truly need to know how to operate the system, I probably won’t be learning it for a little while which leaves me a little unoccupied during the day.
The one thing I am still struggling with at my internship is adjusting to the way people here talk. My supervisor who is very nice is also very harsh when it comes to telling me I did something wrong. There is absolutely no beating around the bush which I appreciate but sometimes in the moment, it is very hard to remember that she’s just trying to explain what you did wrong, the tone of voice is completely a cultural difference and usually doesn’t have to do with the situation. I think in the moment it is tough to take but looking back I’m sure having an experience like this will be useful in the future as you never know what your boss will be like.
After staying in Prague last weekend my roommates and I decided we wanted to go somewhere this weekend but were struggling to find somewhere we could get to either late Friday night after our internships were over or early Saturday morning to make the trip worth our while. We landed on Pilsen, which is about an hour outside Prague by train, which also gave us time to watch the U.S women’s soccer match on Friday night against France! We arrived Saturday morning and did a tour of underground tunnels that used to connect the whole city and then another tour of the famous Pilsner Urquell Brewery, the birthplace of Pilsner beer. Even though this is typically a day trip we decided to stay the night in Pilsen so we won’t worried about rushing back to the train and could enjoy the town a little more.
Pilsen was a fun town to explore but I’m excited about the upcoming weekend, my family is coming and we are all going to Vienna for the holiday in weekend Prague! I am definitely excited to see some familiar faces in Prague and get a chance to show my family all of the things I’ve been telling them about so far.