Career Lessons Learned from Internship Teambuilding

It is important to us that interns work side by side with employees so they may gain exposure to a career in their discipline, and to experience some of the many opportunities ONEOK offers. While we are committed to providing interns with meaningful projects, we also like to make sure they have some fun.

Week one was full of activities ranging from volunteering with community organizations to team-building challenges – all focused on our core values: Ethics, Quality, Diversity, Value and Service. But it’s not all fun and games. Valuable career lessons can be learned from these activities, like:

Teamwork is Dream Work – You are not alone. Don’t expect when starting out that you should be able to handle an entire project on your own. Rarely are projects completed by one person. It takes teamwork to pass a project through the checks and balances of an organization. Working with others, you will learn invaluable tips, tricks and tools that will serve you well throughout your career. 

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ONEOK Interns link arms to participate in a game of team tag.

Leading is Following – A good leader must also know how to follow. In a group challenge, a leader will emerge naturally in most cases. However, only the best leaders are able to recognize and draw on each individual’s strengths to accomplish the task as a team. 

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One team of interns prepares to play a variation of dodgeball.

How to Overcome Fear - You can do it. Getting started in your career can be daunting. Relax. You were hired for a reason. Remember, you have something no one else does: your individual perspective. Many times, new, fresh ideas are what your employer wants. Ask questions and make suggestions! There is no such thing as a dumb question and your interest will earn you big points.

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Looks like this team came out on top!

How to Get Back Up – We all make mistakes. Unfortunately, mistakes in the workplace can feel practically world-ending. Whether it’s a typo that made it through to print or an error in a calculation, most likely, your managers have made mistakes, too. Be comforted knowing that everyone needs checks and balances, not just new hires. Your ability to accept responsibility, fix the issue and move forward will speak volumes about your maturity. 

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A few ONEOK interns take a knee after being tagged “out”.

Here at ONEOK, we have what we call a “learning culture,” where professional growth is encouraged and many mentoring relationships are made. While our interns may only be with us for a few months, we hope they learn valuable lessons and make connections that will serve them well in their professional careers. So, if you roll your eyes when you see “team-building exercises” on your internship agenda, try to keep an open mind. You may be on the fast track to career success!