Starting a placement?

Being young and new can be a huge advantage on placement – if you’re clever about it

I came to Dare through the Creative Pioneers scheme, which is on a constant search to give opportunities to talented young people by placing them in advertising, creative and digital media. I was lucky enough to get a year placement in the creative industries as a Production Apprentice.

Looking back to my first day, I was really nervous. But also really excited. Now I’ve been here nearly six months, and the time has gone really quickly, but – from toilet encounters to mass wrong-address emails, I’ve learnt a few things along the way…

Enjoy being on a placement — and don’t get stressed

Many things will be new and confusing to you, but keep in mind and appreciate the fact that you have been given an opportunity to be in a placement because of a reason.

Always ask for more work

     The enemy of any placement is to sit around doing nothing. If you find yourself unoccupied don’t hesitate to ask for more work. There is always a team member or someone in the organisation who might need help and you can support them by lightening the load of work. Keep in mind that the more valuable you become, the higher the chance that colleagues might look for your help, provide you with work and even involve you in their future projects.

Always be learning

    You are in a placement to widen your knowledge of the industry and gain professional experience. If you feel like you have constantly been doing the same task for a long period, ask to work in a new project or learn from new areas in the business. This won’t only broaden your experience, but proves that you are eager to learn and expand your professional knowledge of the organisation.

Get to know everybody

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Being in a placement means that you will have a huge range of networking opportunities not just internally, but externally. Networking does not mean that you need to attend a thousand events; it can be as simple as kindly talking to someone in the kitchen, or introducing yourself to people who you haven’t yet met in the workplace.

And finally….don’t be scared of making mistakes.

You are in a placement to learn — and making mistakes is the nature of learning.

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On my first day at Dare, my first task was to send an email to a few suppliers, and… I got all of the email addresses wrong.

Or as Will Farrell would say….

But a bad start doesn’t mean a bad ending. I’ve learned a huge amount of knowledge in a short period, and it’s all down to not being afraid of making mistakes.