Throughout my time spent in Shanghai I have participated in many professional and cultural activities, which have enhanced my overall experience in China. These activities have included trips to Wuzhen, Hangzhou, and Beijing, as well as guest speakers focusing on topics such as marketing in China, their personal business experience in China, and the companies H&M, and Ikea.
Working at my company in China has been an eye opening experience to say the least. Working in the luxury goods industry is a unique field in which I never would have thought I would experience. Dealing with exclusive products and high net worth individuals is an invaluable learning experience, which I will take with me to my next chapter in life. The individuals in which I work with are very intelligent and successful people. They provide unique insights and alternatives to difficult situations. Although the workplace is an serious environment, my colleagues also like to have a good time. We frequent dinner specials and happy hours as a group, getting a better understanding of each other along the way.
Being a confident individual, I was tremendously more excited than nervous for my adventure to Shanghai. After restlessly arriving to the Pudong International airport, our group and I were greeted by a member of the Absolute Internship team. From that moment, I knew that my experience would be extremely well accommodated. After arriving to the hotel, I was thoroughly impressed by the living conditions that we were afforded. I could not be happier to have my own bedroom, bathroom, and balcony, eighteen floors above a beautiful city setting. After a fabulous traditional style Chinese meal with our group, my roommate August and I were so eager to explore Shanghai, that we took a cab to a nearby bar. The taxi experience was as unique as the city. It was my first time interacting with a Chinese-speaking individual, so using hand gestures to describe where we wanted to go was crucial. The following morning at orientation, I got to know the rest of the Absolute Internship team, and gained some basic knowledge about Shanghai and the Chinese culture.
As my first day of work was approaching, I really didn’t know what to expect. While I have Interned at other companies, I have never interned abroad. Yes, I have always dreamed of working in Shanghai, but this would really be the moment of truth. I never got to experience what Chinese Business Culture was really like. I had many questions running through my head on my commute to my first day of work. “Will I fit into the business culture here?” “Will I clash with my coworkers?” “Am I ready for what this internship has to offer me?” Thankfully, now I can say that I have overcome all of these insecurities. Starting my fourth week of working at my company, I can say that I’ve been able to grow as a professional.