Bryn Carden Talks Setting Goals and Measuring Success: How to Evaluate Personal Performance as an Intern

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As an intern, life in the professional world can often seem unsettling when no letter grades are given to evaluate performance, like in the academic world. To make the best of an internship period and better prepare for full-time positions or graduate school, interns must self-evaluate their performance. Bryn Carden, an undergraduate student studying at TCU’s Neeley School of Business, experienced the benefits of setting goals as an intern when it came to evaluating her personal performance. Here are a few of her other tips on how to assess personal performance during an internship:

Tip #1: Get familiar with the job description

Knowing what an organization expects from an internship can be found in the job or internship description. Rating of performance starts with expectations, so it is critical for an intern to review the expectations that an organization has for an intern.

Tip #2: Create a skills list

Internships can help students develop essential professional and personal skills needed to succeed in higher education or workplace settings. Usually, a student pursues a specific internship in hopes of gaining certain skills that will aid in accomplishing their next desired step towards an ideal career path. Carden recommends creating a list of skills one hopes to gain before starting an internship. Then, during the internship, she says touching base with that list will help an intern gain perspective about whether or not those specific skills are being obtained and what steps should be taken to level up those skills.

Tip #3: Evaluate productivity standards according to the workplace

To measure productivity performance in accordance with a workplace, interns should take note of the environment. If the internship's office is located in is faster-paced, productivity standards might be higher than in other workplaces with slower processes.

A way to evaluate personal performance daily is to consistently check in with your attitude throughout the day. If you find yourself harping on a bad attitude, that can directly impact professional performance, communication style, teachability, and the perspective of other professionals observing your work performance and self-control.

Tip #5: Assess performance value

Every person in an organization should bring value to the business as a whole, and interns need to realize their position brings value, too. To assess value, interns should understand how their daily tasks contribute to the organization. Meeting deadlines, turning in work early, or taking on more work without being asked can elevate an individual’s value in the workplace.

Tip #6: Ask yourself a lot of questions

Self-evaluation is necessary to break down personal performance, which is why continuously asking yourself questions about personal performance as an intern can benefit a forward-thinking mindset. Are you reliable? Dependable? Organized? These are the types of self-evaluation questions to ask.

Tip #7: Find a professional mentor

Connecting with a professional mentor in the workplace can give interns an outside and helpful perspective on their performance. In addition, mentors can offer performance advice to boost work results.


About Bryn Carden

Bryn Carden is a versatile young entrepreneur with a deep sense of compassion and the desire to help make the world a better place. In 2017, she founded Styles for Smiles - a company selling bracelets to support the Smile Train Organization. The proceeds from selling Bryn’s designs have already helped fund cleft palate repairs for 16 children in developing countries.