Developing New Skills in London

Hello once again from London! Time has been flying and I can’t believe how little time I have left in this great city. As the third month of the program comes to a close, it is amazing to look back at how far I have come on this program, and how much I have developed as an individual.

When I set out on this study abroad adventure, one of my goals was to build up my soft skills in communication and time management. Over the course of this internship, I have done just that. My internship is a particularly interesting case for both communication and time management because of the fact that most of my work is done in collaboration with another team member who works remotely from Arizona—which is about an eight-hour time difference. Since I do most of my work in the morning here, there are only two days that our schedules overlap, and only briefly. This has made time management and communication so crucial for my internship, as I constantly have to be aware of when I will be able to get in touch with my colleague and make sure I have everything done before our weekly meetings.

Additionally, I also set out with the intention of learning and developing several different hard skills, particularly dealing with data analytics; however, due to an unforeseen website malfunction, I haven’t been able to really deal with a lot of data—but that is ok. Despite not being able to develop my data analytics hard skills, I have learned a lot about other hard skills, namely in Canva, Word Press, and Sprout Social. Having to assist in rebuilding the company website from scratch exposed me to many of the ins-and-outs of Word Press, including things like site creation and SEO. I have also had to design a bunch of different social media posts for the company on Canva, which has been a very interesting experience for someone who is not the most creative. After making these posts, I have also had to learn how to schedule, post, and monitor the statistics of my posts in a program called Sprout Social.

As I mentioned before, my main point of contact in this internship is an American, so navigating cross-cultural situations in the workplace has not been an issue for me. That being said, now that we are all settled into living in London, I have noticed that I am much more comfortable in navigating cross-cultural situations on the street, and particularly on public transport. The other day, I noticed a few people struggling to understand the Tube map in one of the stations I was in. I could tell they couldn’t speak English all that well, so I offered to help them get to their destination, telling them which stops and trains to take. It was challenging to navigate the language barrier between us, but one of the people knew just enough English that I was able to help out. I can’t believe that there is less than a month left, but I am so excited to explore London, the UK, and Europe as much as possible in that month. Until next time!