As a management student at the Great Lakes Institute of Management in Chennai, we live with the dream of being a manager or a leader of a big MNC in the near future. However, before that, we need to learn about being a good leader. After doing my bachelor’s in Business Administration in I jumped straight into an MBA course. Since I don’t have any professional work experience, an internship helps people like me gain skills that are attractive to future employers – and possibly impress the company you are interning at to make you an offer after you graduate!
As part of our MBA course, we must complete several internships to build up our real-world skill-set and make ourselves job-ready once we graduate. This includes setting up a professional LinkedIn profile!
My Chennai internship journey with eG Innovations started at the end of April when I received a notification from the college placement committee that the company was looking for marketing interns.
I researched eG Innovations but was very nervous about applying because it’s a specialized IT company and I don’t have any background in IT.
However, my elder sister, who has been working in IT for the last 4 years, encouraged me to apply on the basis that it will put me in a good position to apply for enterprise IT companies after I graduate. She told me that companies like IBM and Amazon AWS are always looking for people with IT experience, so that helped me to make up my mind!
As an added bonus, this was a paid internship in Chennai! I’ve never had a job before so earning a small stipend meant the world to me as it would be the first time I had received a paycheck in my bank account!
After successfully clearing the interview round with the marketing director of eG Innovations, I joined the Chennai-based team in mid-May. I was introduced to the international marketing team that had people from India, Europe and America. I was able to listen in to the weekly meetings and learn how fully remote, global teams coordinate and collaborate to get their work done.
The marketing director explained that one of the biggest challenges he has had to overcome since he joined was that every person is now working from home. This meant that there were sometimes problems with people not having power, internet connection issues, background noise during meetings, and, since the Covid pandemic, people were taking a lot more time off sick.
He said that managers have had to become a lot more compassionate and understanding over the last two years. This means being flexible on meeting timings or scheduling further calls if people are unable to attend the regular meetings.
The entire internship was a big learning journey for me. Every day there was something new to learn, whether that is related to marketing, about the company, or about the IT industry. Given that I didn’t have any previous work experience, this has been invaluable to me and I believe that it has given me a solid foundation to launch my career after I graduate.
One thing that I was surprised to learn was how friendly everyone was with each other. Based on stories I had heard from other students who were interning at companies in Chennai, I had expected there to be a strict hierarchy with the manager dictating work to everyone and everyone to strictly follow his instructions.
Instead, there was plenty of team-bonding time during the weekly marketing calls where everyone could update what was going on in their life. I think this helped build a team spirit which you would have gotten in an office. I think that teams will struggle with team bonding when everyone is remote and it’s the biggest thing that I missed about my internship – I wish that I had been able to meet my teammates in real life.
I particularly enjoyed that even across continents, there were common bonds between us. One of those bonds was a love for growing plants and flowers. Each week the team would swap tips with each other and share photos of how their plants were growing. I was very surprised to see this as I didn’t expect to see people in India and Europe have much in common. I also enjoyed that people were happy to bring their children on to the video calls and no one seemed to mind. I thought working for a corporate would be very formal, but eG Innovations was very friendly and welcoming – like a family and not a group of colleagues.
What I saw was a more collaborative approach to work. Everyone had their area of responsibility and the marketing director made sure that each person had the tools and information to do their job. I saw that everyone knew what they had to do and what the goal of the marketing team was, so everyone was working towards that goal instead of waiting to be told what to do.
In terms of learning for my job, I learned about sales and marketing platforms like ZoomInfo and Salesforce. I had never heard of these tools before and didn’t know such tools could exist. ZoomInfo is like the phone directory for any kind of lead you can imagine. We learned how to use these tools to create targeted marketing campaigns based on the ideas in the Predictable Revenue book by Aaron Ross & Marylou Tyler.
Aside from the business learnings, I was also able to get a better understanding of the IT function within an organization. Basically, without the IT team I don’t think an organization can function. There is so much IT infrastructure and management going on behind the scenes that you don’t realize how complex it is just to do something simple like online banking or having a doctor bring up your patient records on a computer.
As this was my first internship in Chennai and first experience of working for a corporate, I was really happy with my decision to apply and try it out. I would definitely tell anyone who is thinking of pursuing a career in B2B marketing or sales to consider an IT product company like eG Innovations.
Even if you don’t have any IT experience, eG Innovations helped me learn about the industry while also teaching me the fundamentals of B2B marketing. I got real-world, hands-on experience in creating a marketing campaign, and it didn’t matter that I didn’t fully understand the IT world because the whole marketing team helped me.
I look forward to crossing paths with everyone in the eG Innovations marketing team again in the future!