06 Jul 2020 22:48 IST

How to make Interning From Home impactful

A Royal Bank of Scotland intern finds that a flexible, dynamic attitude helps in times of disruption

I interned at the Royal Bank of Scotland (Operations). Since the bank’s HR informed me in advance about work from home (WFH), I had time to be prepared. Prof. Vasanthi Srinivasan’s article in BusinessLine offered some great tips.

RBS was incredibly supportive in setting up remote system access. The project was about process improvement. I explored ways of enhancing customer experience and improving productivity, using a range of Six Sigma tools like SIPOC, Pareto, RCA and statistical sampling. I was also able to apply learnings from analytics, marketing and product management in my project. It was incredibly satisfying when all the three recommendations I offered were accepted and immediately put into action. I learnt that looking at every problem from the CEO’s perspective is key to solving business problems.

To make WFH impactful, I had to figure out a work rhythm I was comfortable with. I used the Pomodoro technique to break each day’s work into 10-15 tasks of 30 minutes each. This helped ward off fatigue and enabled me to finish each day with a sense of achievement.

My mentor and I agreed on a 30-minute catch-up call every Friday. This ensured that there was continuous attention paid to the project, and timely feedback was given. When it came to virtual interactions, things that helped me connect effectively with people were: being mindful of others’ time, keeping conversations interactive, asking many questions, making a genuine effort to understand their views, and being appreciative of their help.

My key learning was “If you feel ownership for the organisation, your customers and your people, even if you are far from the office, your work will always be close to you”.

(The writer, (PGP class of 2021), is a PMI-certified Project Manager with 7+ years in Operations, Business Process Transformation, Agile Projects and Change management. His interests are in Process Improvement, Project Management and Data Analytics.)