My responsibilities during my internship have consisted of learning softwares to help streamline Bow & Arrow's event production process and help project manage summer shows. Bow & Arrow is looking to make their production process more efficient, so I have been creating templates and inputting show information into new softwares. This makes the production process easier because then everything is in one spot, and tasks that were completed manually are now automatically generated. Additionally, I have been learning how to project manage two different shows for local clients in the Des Moines area. This involves scheduling meetings with clients, reaching out to vendors, and reaching out to the rest of the Bow & Arrow team to make sure our tasks are completed well and in a timely manner.
My greatest accomplishment during my internship experience was working on the Farmer's Mutual Hail St. Baldrick's show. For Bow & Arrow, this show is vastly different from their normal, corporate work. The FMH St. Baldrick's event is a fundraising for children's cancer research. I helped plan the kids' activities and communicate with the client to make sure everything was in place to ensure the event was a success. During the day of the show, I helped set up decorations, communicate with the FMH event team, stage manage, tear down, and make sure the Bow & Arrow team was well fed. It was a joy to see everyone having fun and raising funds for a great cause! In the end, FMH raised $100,000 for children's cancer research, and the event ran without a hitch! It was a great event to be a part of!
The greatest lesson I have learned from my experience with Bow & Arrow is that people who feel appreciated and respected will go above and beyond in their work. In the corporate event industry, the spring and fall are the busiest seasons. During those times, Bow & Arrow employees are expected to go above and beyond to ensure that all of their events are successful. Bow & Arrow staff are willing to go that extra mile during their busiest seasons because they are given time off in the summer and winter. This summer, I witnessed the President and Vice President of Bow & Arrow make sure that everyone was given adequate time off to spend with their friends and family. I was given Fridays off or as a work-from-home day, and when my coworkers were leaving for vacation their superiors took on their projects. My coworkers have taken time to get to know me, and ensure that I have all of the tools I need to succeed. Because of their care, I feel valued and appreciated. This makes me want to keep working for Bow & Arrow.
What advice would you give?
My advice for future students in event and hospitality management is to always ask about the culture of company you are looking into. How employees treat others and their clients is the most important aspect of the service industry. During my time at Iowa State, I have had two very different internship experiences. At one, I did not know my coworkers valued me until my last day of work, and my manager talked bad about his coworkers and other clients behind their backs. This caused me to lose respect for him and the company I worked for. During that time, I learned many valuable skills, yet I also learned how not to treat others. That internship experience, caused me to ask about the culture of the companies I interviewed for. I realized that I could learn any skills needed for any job I applied for, but that I could not stand a workplace that did not value their employees and clients.