Change From Within

As we come to the end of our sixth week here in Berlin, I have a lot to share. Since returning from Budapest I have been trying my best to rest throughout this week. I spent another weekend at the lake laying in the sand and in the sun. This has become one of my favorite things to do on the weekends. Before I left, I never thought Berlin would have such easy access to nature and the outdoors, but this has been a pleasant surprise. I always seem to find myself laying on a beach Sunday afternoon after a long week at work. This week at work has been especially difficult. Most of my co-worker’s were away on a company retreat but I was not allowed to go. While they were gone, they tasked me and several other interns to run the reception desk. At first, I thought this would be fairly easy but that was not the case. I went into this thinking I would mostly be pushing the button to open the door for people who had forgot their keys, but I was very wrong. Members of the co-working space would constantly come up and ask us for things and it I was running around all day. The biggest challenge was helping with a sustainability event we hosted on Thursday. There were a lot of people coming in and out of the space and they all had questions about ImpactHub Berlin. I feel as though I was able to answer them well because I did go through an intensive on-boarding before I started the internship. I also had some of my fellow interns by my side, so we were able to work our way through the event and things went relatively smoothly for everyone.

            To reward myself for the long week I went to Museum Island on Saturday. This was a nice relaxing way to kick off my weekend. Walking through all the different exhibits was almost therapeutic. My favorite museum was the Neues Museum. This is an art museum, and they had a gorgeous exhibit on ancient civilizations through the years. It started focusing on ancient Egypt and carried through to Greece and Rome. I really enjoyed this because I have always been a history nerd growing up. After the museum I walked through an awesome street market filled with art from different local artist throughout the city. Although I didn’t buy anything it was cool to see, and it really made feel like I was part of the city and not a tourist.

            This trip has made me realize a lot of different things about myself and has given me opportunities to reflect. One thing I have noticed is a slight change in my leadership. I would consider myself a very hands-on leader. I like to take charge of things, whether it is in my school and group projects, or extracurriculars. I have always been someone that likes to make a strong plan when it comes to making decisions. Since I started working at ImpactHub Berlin I have had to adapt. Since I am interning, I am not faced with many opportunities to make decisions and typically tasks are given to me. At first this was hard for me. I struggled being at the bottom of the food chain. Over the past weeks I feel as though I have grown into this role and I have maximized my ability to effect change from my position. While I am not reaching out to clients making sales I am working to lead from my position. For example, in a meeting my team discussing hiring a student for when I leave to take over my position as someone to generate leads. While I wish I could stay they need someone who can come into the office and since I will be back in Pittsburgh, I would not be able help. Instead of just attending the meeting I offered to write a job description and create an on-boarding document for the next person. The reason I did this was because throughout my on-boarding process I felt as though ideas and concepts were scattered and I would find myself confused at points. As the first person working in this position for IHB I felt I would be a good person initiate this small change. I wanted to help the process go smoother for the next person. While this may not seem like a huge deal, I think that it shows that my leadership style has adapted. I am creating opportunities for myself to help make a difference for the organization from my position, and I think that is what leadership is. Making a difference for your team.