Jessica Bisset is majoring in Accounting graduating in May 2018. She had an internship this summer at EMAA International in Prague, Czech Republic.
Tell us a little about how you landed the internship: To get my internship, I had to go through three sets of interviews. One was with an advisor at the U of A, the second was with a staff member at my study abroad program, and the third was with my employer. The workers at CEA served as liaisons between Arizona and the Czech workforce, and helped figure out the best fit for a summer internship for me.
What was a typical day at your internship like? A typical day at my internship consisted of several meetings (with anyone from peers to CEO level staff), and then a lot of individual work. At my office, you had to be a very independent worker. Throughout the summer, I had several long-term market research projects I conducted, in addition to communicating with my business’ clients from around the world. I developed travel plans and itineraries for clients from other European countries, South Africa, and Southeast Asia.
What was your favorite part of the internship? My favorite part of my internship was how the internship changed how I view work norms. The Czech Republic has so many innate differences from the United States that it really opened my eyes to the challenges that can be faced when doing business internationally. I realized having successful business relations across cultures takes a high degree of understanding, respect, and communication.
What are a few things you learned? Similarly to my answer to the previous questions, I realized no norm that is pertinent to your country is a norm that is universal when it comes to business. If you want to collaborate on a global scale, you have to refrain from being biased and treat others’ perspectives with respect and consideration. Working in Prague this summer taught me the value in being open-minded has when it comes to the success and efficiency of international business deals.