It was June 1, 2016. I was 19 years old, right out of my freshmen year of college—the youngest employee at the company. I had no real business skills besides Microsoft Office and no knowledge about the industry. I was a sales intern and this was my first official internship experience.
It’s been four months since my first anxiety-inducing day at Jana and I’ve been reflecting on my time at the company. Something happened that I never thought would—I woke up at 7 a.m. every morning, excited to go to work because I made a difference. At Jana, I didn’t do typical desk intern work like filing papers, making copies, or managerial work. I was getting into the nitty gritty details with each member of the team, working with them to improve and learn.
I was important.
Don't take that for granted. Here are three reasons why interning at Jana is not like your average internship:
1. You will learn. A lot.
Don’t come to Jana expecting your role to be simple. You’ll be thrown into the deep end from day one. Not only did the internship challenge me more than any college class or discussion I’ve ever had, but also I wasn’t alone. I came to Jana with very unsure expectations on how people would treat and teach me. Everyone I talked to was incredibly helpful, respectful, and genuinely fun to be around with.
In this startup environment, everyone wants to improve and grow along with you. As an intern, what you have to offer is important—your opinions, ideas, and suggestions. When people ask you for something, it’s because they genuinely respect you and your thoughts. One of the great things about Jana is how all the different teams are connected—whether it be engineering, sales, customer management, and public relations—you will get to know people from every division.
2. What you do matters
Giving internet access to billions of people is no easy task, but it’s one to strive for. At Jana, your work has an impact. I wasn’t expecting that my internship projects would reach and help so many people. With every market research and analysis project I completed, I helped our team get a better understanding of the industry and our markets. With every prospect list that I helped create in Salesforce, I helped our sales team reach more clients. My work wasn’t sideline material—I was playing in the major leagues.
3. The people and the environment challenge you
Startup life at Jana is very different from corporate life. You’ve heard the stories about the manager who doesn’t care about you and the coworkers who are all at your throat. I wasn’t interested in that. I wanted an environment where I could learn and be challenged, while at the same time enjoying myself and building new friendships and relationships. Jana did just that. The people at Jana are simply amazing. They are dedicated, hardworking, and “normal.” They are people you can talk to about your personal life, people you hang out with, grab a drink or go to an event with. Everyone I’ve met has been unconditionally accepting of me and has helped me improve as a person.
I’m extremely proud to have been part of such a wonderful and talented group of individuals. The work that we do matters and it’s very easy to see those tangible benefits. I am confident that if you come here too, you will feel the same.