One of the most difficult aspects of being in a new environment is having to learn new things and accept change. I have found this to be true at many times throughout my life thus far, including joining new teams, schools, or any organization in general. Often the main goal that can be difficult to achieve is feeling useful to the rest of the group.
Adaptability can be hard to attain because you have to be able to adjust to change quickly and still be efficient enough to not let something else slip. It can be easy to start a task that won’t take much time, and forget to complete another project that you had already started. As human beings, many of us fear change and don’t adjust well when change is required, but finding a way to effectively do so can be essential to your success in any job or leadership role.
A portion of adaptability that I have found to be extremely important in my time as an intern is malleability. While there may be things that are asked of you that you aren’t familiar with, it is important to make an effort to understand them and be as resourceful as possible. Sometimes, you may receive a task that is out of your comfort zone, but I have found it extremely rewarding to take the time to learn about that system or process and become as familiar with it as I can.
As someone that is nearing the end of my time in college, I have decided that the “syllabus” concept is both a blessing and a curse. In college, every syllabus has been essential to my overall success because I was able to plan and manage my time accordingly between class, athletics, Greek life, and other extracurricular activities. What I have learned while being in a professional environment is there is not a schedule that says every single thing that will happen each day, so you have to discipline yourself to be adaptable to any situations that come your way.
While many aspects of your daily schedule may be on the calendar, the ones that aren’t expected or planned are often the most crucial. When dealing with a time crunch, it can be easy to overlook important details. The success that is achieved while producing strong work within a a short deadline can be so rewarding!
One way that you can quantity control your last minute hiccups. One of those ways is by explaining expectations and time windows in the beginning and giving that person an idea of the turnaround times for the services they are receiving. This does not ensure that last minute hiccups won’t occur, but may help decrease the frequency of last minute projects. While this will not eliminate all of these occasions, it is still a good way to stay on the same page with clients and coworkers. At the end of the day, the most difficult concepts to achieve, like adaptability, can be the most important ones!