This first week in Dublin has been a very welcoming experience. I’ve been able to visit different tourist spots that are just the beginning of my time here. I’m hoping as I continue to live and work in the city I’ll be able to discover more places off the beaten path. For the people of Ireland, everyone is kind and friendly and is willing to help you when they can. I haven’t had too many culture shocks, I’ve just had to get used to the thick accents and using euros for payment. It was nice to have an introduction to the city and the area before we begin working this upcoming week and I’m excited to feel like more of a resident than a tourist.
This summer I am working in the non-profit, education industry where the focus is on highlighting the smartest college students around the world. I have worked in the non-profit sector before and find it very rewarding that these organizations’ only mission is to give back to their respective community. Without a focus on profit, they can focus on more beneficial aspects to the people they serve. In this case, a focus on education and knowledge through international connectedness and networking is the main goal of the Global Undergraduate Awards. Non-profits have to focus a lot on their relationships and their reputation with those outside the organization. Marketing is very important to make sure that there is awareness of the organization, specifically its target audience. Since I will be working as a marketing intern, I need to focus on creating that awareness while staying true to the brand and mission of the organization.
Within these industries, it is important to carry certain skills and have specific strengths to be successful. The marketing industry has a large emphasis on communication and the way you can use different kinds to appeal to different people or sell a certain product, or in this case a mission. Communication through social media is becoming increasingly important in our society and using these platforms to an organization’s advantage can be very beneficial and bring more awareness to what they are doing for their community. Communication among the people the organization interacts with is also important for the non-profit sector. By creating relationships that are long-lasting the organization has a better chance of spreading its message and having people spread it for them through their own positive experiences. Since I am working in a different country, communication can be different and sometimes difficult. It is important to be culturally competent and understand the slight nuances that can happen when people with the same culture are speaking versus a visitor, like myself. For instance, in Ireland, there are certain phrases and customs that don’t mean what they sound like to Americans. Within my industry, I must be careful and understand what I may be posting or making that is appropriate for the country I am in while also appealing to the international audience that the non-profit aims to educate.
Another skill that is essential to marketing and the non-profit sector is adaptability and flexibility. When it comes to the way people communicate through media, if there are unforeseen circumstances like a global pandemic, or just any small hiccup in a plan, being in this industry requires quick thinking and pivoting. Specifically, on social media and different platforms, there are new trends and new ways to do things that will reach more people, and learning how to gain a larger audience is important for non-profits as well. Being flexible in my work and how I do things is essential because of the new people I will be working with, the different culture I’m working in and the new skills I will be learning at this organization.
Finally, an important competency and strength to have is collaboration and teamwork. Being able to work with new people, through adaptability, and then working as a team can make work a lot easier and can be more successful for the organization. This strength is important in any industry but especially working in a new culture and with people who don’t know my work style, I need to be able to learn how to collaborate and benefit from their skills as well so we can all work together and achieve the goals of the organization. All of these strengths tie in together and are essential to being successful in a new environment. Communication is important in collaboration and adaptability is important when transitioning into any project or new culture. I’m excited to see how my skills will prepare me for my work this week and what my job will look like.