03 January 2015

My Internship Experience// Part 1: Lesson I Got During The Interview

Hi, guys it's always nice to be back blogging again and I hope I'm not too late to say "HAPPY NEW YEAR 2015!!" I wish you all a fruitful one year ahead, so let's make 2015 a year that's gonna be full of achievements and self-improvements! <3 <3

Reflecting back to the 2014 blessings, one of the great chances I had last year was to be able to experience internship. Well, it was one of my dreams as a college student to endure internship. Why? firstly, simply because I wanted to know how it felt to work in a company. Secondly, I wanted to measure my ability and self-preparedness in the working world. Thirdly, I wanted to figure out the important aspects that are needed in work. And the last, I wanted to know what kind of aspects in working that I am still lacking of so that I can draw a measure on how I have to tackle with those "problems". 

Actually in my department itself,  they have never managed a student internship before or even encourage their students to endure an internship. So this was the first time for them to officially provide a chance for their students to intern which I think it was an extremely great improvement within my department. And I heard that from now on, they will provide more and more internship opportunities for the students, which is a really good thing! So for anyone who is the student of Japanese Literature, Universitas Gadjah Mada WHO READ THIS, please guys make sure to drop your very attention to read carefully of everything written in the notice board because you don't want to miss a single precious opportunity right?! Or well, for every student from any university, if you happen to read this, I say that it's always good to check you department's notice board. Yes, because the reason I got this opportunity was by accidentally glancing at my department's notice board when I passed through it, and found a paper that said they were seeking for someone who was willing to endure an internship in one out of five TOYOTA Group companies in Jakarta for three weeks!! Of course I couldn't hold my excitement and went home right away to compile my documents in order to join the screening process held by my department.

After the document screening process, my department announced that me along with my junior, the two of us were allowed to proceed to the next stage: INTERVIEW. Turned out, I was interviewed by the Human Resources Department staff of DENSO INDONESIA Group. It was my first time ever in my life to be interviewed directly by the HR staff of a big company. I was a bit nervous that time! But in such situations, I always try to take a deep breath, think everything's gonna be alright and the ultimate important thing is to draw a sincere smile to support your nervous self, right? And finally, I was the fourth person to be interviewed. I walked into the interview room without any feelings of burden. I just let God to guide me. 


So, the committee contacted me around three hours before the interview time that I would be interviewed by Denso Indonesia Group. I didn't know much about the company, so I hurried to access their website and read as much as I could and try to understand everything that I read even though there was a part that was difficult for me to understand. It was the part that telling about the company's products. Okay, let me tell you a bit of it. So, Denso is a manufacturing company that focuses on the production of automotive parts for cars, trucks and mini tractors. Those products are for example, spark plug, stick coil, filter, radiator, air conditioner, etc (actually there are still sooo many variants of their products). Well, that time I was lost, I had no clue at all about what they were except the air conditioner part. The thing that made me nervous that time was, "would they ask me about my knowledge of their products?"If they asked me about that I would just die right away because I couldn't find any easier explanation about stick coil, spark plug, filter and radiator at that time. All I do was googling, accessing wikipedia and online dictionary to know the meaning of those stuffs in bahasa, lol. So you know, that was a busy and confusing three hours while I still got to decide what kind of outfit I should wear (trousers or skirt), what color I should choose for my blouse, should I go with pony tail or just let my hair down, etc etc. Hahaha. Please pardon the perks of being a girl who follow fashion bloggers and fashion account in instagram.

But thank God, all of my efforts above (about searching the meaning of stick coil and its friends) were in vain, they were finally useless! Hahaha, I was beyond happy that the interviewer only focuses about me, my achievements, my experiences, the problems that I faced in the past and how I overcame those problems, my goals in the future and other great chit-chats still about me and my life. The interview was so personal and deep and fun and there's nothing to be nervous about. I got a lot of things to share to the interviewer, mainly about my activities in uni, my positions within those activities, my thoughts about the things I wanna gain from this internship, the effect of this internship for my life ahead and the steps that I wanna take after I graduate. The interview was based on my past facts, so that I found myself was very "comfortable" and confident with all of my answers because they were all true.

The interview wasn't that very long, if I'm not mistaken it was only about less then 30 minutes. The first 10 minutes was conducted in english and the rest was in Bahasa. What I love about this interview is that the interviewer gave me a feedback about me during the interview. He said that everything was okay, he found no major problem except I was talking too fast. Yeah, I understand that really well because people often said that to me. But you know, whenever I feel excited I just can't speak slowly! But from that interview day, I learned to speak more slowly whenever I explain something to someone else :)


So here are five things that I found them important during the interview for internshio. I'm sure that there must be more things other than these five, but as for now I can only think about these points. I hope it could be useful for you :)


Well, during the interview, especially an interview that is conducted by HR staff (if you manage to pass this phase, the next time you will be interviewed by the users/ managers), they will dig  information about your character and what you have in yourself because they want to know "million" things about you! Then I realized that besides environment, someone's character is also shaped by the experiences and problems that they ever faced in their lives. If you never join an activity during your college days and never have a role in that activity, how can you build your character? YOU HAVE NOTHING TO SHARE TO THE INTERVIEWER BECAUSE YOU DO NOTHING. You don't want to tell lies and imaginations during the interview do you? 

Because the HR staff will never ask you something like this: "tell me your good and bad points!". NEVER AT ALL. Obviously you will have a chance to fake your answers with such question, right? Hence, they will always ask about your past or recent activities and experiences to know more about you and decide your personality.


People said to to enjoy life and forget every problems you've been through. But well, only for the interview, please recall all of the problems you ever had in life as a human, in university as a college student, in any activity you joined whether you were a member, project leader or whatever position you ever had in that activity. The interviewer would love to know your problems and the way you solve them. I think, the more problems you face, the more skillful you're gonna be in dealing with problem solving, and companies love someone who is good at problem solving. Just like what my supervisor has said to me, TO WORK = TO SOLVE THE PROACTIVELY GROWING PROBLEMS. 


Everything happens for a reason and so does every of your answer during the interview. Whenever the interviewer ask you about your thought on something, answer it clearly with a well elaborate reason. Never answering by only giving a lot of points without giving explanations to each point. For example, if the interviewer ask you "what do you expect from this internship?", from this question I guess there will be a looot of answers such as "I want to gain experiences to work in a big company", "I want to be included in the company's project if it's possible", "I want to learn the business process of this company" and so on, hundreds of possible answers for such question, right? But don't forget to add "because" to every of those answers, so that the interviewer will know your true intention and the urgency of you in applying the internship. So, instead of only listing down your expectations, it is better to elaborate your answer clearly with reason because it can also enhance "your value" in front of the interviewer. 


Okay, I will tell you the truth that a  lot of interviewers use a "friendly method" to seek information from the interviewee. The objection of this friendly method is to make the interviewee relax and comfortable in dealing with the questions without feeling afraid or something. The opposite of this friendly interview method is "interview with pressure", where the interviewer uses the expressions, intonations, words which are to press the psychic of the interviewee. The objection of this interview is to examine the endurance of the interviewee towards pressures that may happen in a work. Well, I have never been in a situation of interview with pressure, so I cannot tell you much about this.

Now, what I'm going to tell you in this point is about the friendly interview. No matter how chill, (seems like) easy-going and friendly the interviewer is, an interviewer is still an interviewer, a person who runs an interview, a person who gives assessment to every of your answer, a person who judges your manner and gestures during the interview, and a person who will draw a conclusion whether you are qualified or not for the job. So, even if the interviewer's manner is looked very relaxed and nonchalant, and also he/ she talks in a casual way, doesn't mean that you can act casually either and make the situation less formal. Remember to always behave appropriately, talk with a good manner and gestures during the whole interview, but just don't be way too serious! :D


Usually, this is what you will get at the end of the interview. The interviewer will give a chance for you to ask just anything related to the work/ company/ hiring procedure/ etc. They will give you this chance once they already collected enough information about you. But hey, you don't want to miss this good chance by only answering "no" to the interviewer's question "That's all from me. Now, do you have any question?", right? GRAB THIS CHANCE, SHOW THE INTERVIEWER YOUR CURIOSITY ABOUT THE COMPANY!

If you think you're not a good spontaneous questioner, prepare your question(s) from home! Access the company's website, and make question(s) from it, of course the smart ones! Astonish the interviewer with your question, because they may remember you not only by your physical appearance but also with your good questions.

I think one until three questions are good enough to prepare. Always ask in a humble manner and never ask in a bombarding way like you're an infotainment journalist. hahaha. At the end, when you already get the answer of the question, don't forget to express that you understand with his/ her answer and say thank you! :)

So that's they are, five lessons I got after being interviewed. Well, whether it is an interview for internship or interview for the real work, I guess the five points above can work for both. Every interviewer always ask based on fact of your past and your genuine and smart answers are what they want. 

I hope this post can be a useful one for you guys. I know this post is not my typical blog post like usual but in the future I would love to write this kind of thing and share the experiences I got more often. I will be back on the next post, still about my internship experience. The next post is gonna be about my experience of working in a company, especially a Japanese company and more information about my internship program! <3

P.S. : Thank you so much for Dewi and Nurma, if we didn't have a passionate conversation about this internship experience some days ago, may be this post would never exist, lol. I hope you read this, mwah.

See ya on the next post, guys! xx


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