Before getting into how I spent my summer interning at Google, I think it’s important to acknowledge the journey. When I came into Booth, I was pretty certain that I was going to pursue my own entrepreneurial endeavor. I connected with the Polsky Center, got up to speed on the NVC/SNVC, and enrolled in Entrepreneurial Discovery. While dedicating most of my Autumn quarter to this career path, I engaged in a lot of self-reflection. I asked myself, “What is it about entrepreneurship that I am so enamored with?” In answering that question I realized I wanted to drive the culture and strategy of a company, not necessarily start one. I want to be a CEO not a founder.
With a shift in focus, I spent time researching career paths of successful CEOs to identify the gaps in my experience. Ultimately, I decided to focus on recruiting for product management and corporate strategy roles, as these were areas that I had little exposure to and were essential to a well-rounded understanding of the business. I leveraged the resources and support of Booth Technology Group (BTG) and Corporate Management Group (CMG) to prepare for upcoming interviews and learn best practices from 2Ys. After a months-long recruiting process, I received an offer to intern within Google’s central strategy team (CSO) within the sales organization. I had always been interested in Google because of its culture and breadth of internal mobility.
Which brings us to now. I’ve just wrapped up 12 weeks of challenges, intense growth and learning, and relationship building. I learned how to systematically approach a problem from hypothesis formulation to planning my analyses to delivering insights-driven recommendations to leadership. It really was the perfect intern project because I owned the project end-to-end, and I walked away feeling like I added and gleaned value.
While the project is central to the internship, Google places a strong emphasis on relationships, encouraging interns to spend at least 20% of their time taking advantage of the network, getting to know various parts of the business, and leveraging training resources. I had the chance to have coffee chats with Googlers across Cloud, YouTube, and various product and marketing teams. It was eye-opening to see how expansive Google is, and all of the career opportunities within the company. It’s a great sandbox to build a career in.
In the spirit of relationship building, I developed incredible relationships with my team members. I had the opportunity to host an org-wide virtual olympics to promote connectedness within the team. I organized a wine tasting event for our smaller team, which was such a blast and a great way to get to know one another more personally. By the end, I earned a Values Award for fostering community across the CSO team. It was so rewarding to feel like I brought value beyond my project.
Reflecting back on my recruiting and internship journeys, I’ve learned four key things: enjoy the search process as much as you can, keep perspective on what you like versus what you wish you liked, be thoughtful about what you want to learn over the summer (whether about yourself, the company, or the function), and ask for feedback constantly! More to come on the details of this journey in a future blog post – stay tuned!
I absolutely loved my internship experience for the challenges, the fun, and the relationships I built. With that, I hope to return to Google full time because it is a fit for my career aspirations and development areas that I’m prioritizing right now. Please reach out to me if you have any questions about my experience and/or about the process. I would love to be a resource for you. ‘Til next time!