Today I got to the office at 8:30 am and went to my desk. First, I finished crafting the email for the kickoff meeting with the new VAN members. Then, I saw that Avery Gray, Tax Director and leader of VAN in the NE, had emailed me and invited me to a VAN Northeast Initial Planning meeting. Avery has just been able to get all the leaders together and the purpose of today's meeting was to brainstorm on the structure of the Chapter, the mission, and anything else to start building a framework and setting goals. The meeting was held after lunch, Avery and Anthony were in the room and two other people joined over the phone. Avery began the meeting by introducing the VAN and what he envisioned for the group. After discussing how the group was going to be structured and the main focus, they turned the meeting to me. I presented everything I had worked on, the Spark Page, the kickoff powerpoint, and the members list. They were very happy with my work and they appreciated my help. I was very nervous to talk to them at first, but then I gained more confidence and I was able o give them my input and feedback on the VAN. Even though I have only two weeks left I am happy and proud of how this initiative has grown and the path it is taking. Also, today I had a follow up shadowing in Tax. Last week I attended the call for Joe's (Tax manager) client, and today I attended the meeting with the whole client team. During this meeting the discussed everything that was talked with the client last week on the call and they began to divide roles.
Tuesday July 19th – PricewaterhouseCoppersLLP (Boston, MA)
Today I got to the office at 8:30 am, I looked at my emails and at 9:30 am I attended an event with all the other interns. Here Melvin, another, intern, gave a presentation on Linkedin and the importance of a professional presence on social media. Two years ago I created my Linkedin and as I have been getting internships over the years I have realized the value of this profile. Linkedin is an online resume, which is public to many companies and professionals. It is important to have a good online presence as they recruit many people from this social media. If managed correctly, one can take advantage of the benefits it brings along. After this presentation John Farina, Manager Partner for the NE, talked to us briefly about the firm, since they are at year end, and asked for feedback of the program. After this presentation I went back to my office and continued to work on the things I discussed with Avery in the meeting. I crafted an email which I will be sending to leaders of the VAN Chapter around the US. In this email I will ask them how they keep their members involved and what they usually do in Veterans Day. Avery and Anthony, in the meeting, said that this event would be the perfect opportunity to really market the group and get the people involved. Therefore, I thought it would be a great idea to reach out to offices who have already had some experience managing this group to get some insight. After crafting the email, I shared all my work with Avery and the council members of VAN in the Northeast. I still have to get some work done before I leave for the VAN, but I am happy I was able to meet with Avery and share with him the work I have done for this initiative he has brought to the NE. Lastly, today I approached Allyson and asked her to help me connect with someone in Advisory. None of my coaches are part of the Advisory team and I would love to get a shadowing opportunity here since this is the area I am interested in joining.
Wednesday July 20th – PricewaterhouseCoppersLLP (Boston, MA)
Today I got to the office at 8:30 am and got to my conference room. I had some feedback from Avery so I continued to improve the Spark page with the new resources he gave me, I also added more things to the page which I was missing. After I finished twitching the spark page I fixed the list of the members that was messed up when I inserted the filters. Since the meeting with Avery I had decided to take initiative and I reached out to two important members of the VAN from the Florida and the NYC office. I asked them how they keep their members involved and the events they had carried out for Veterans Day, since this is the event Avery is thinking about the most to really launch the VAN in the NE and gain more members. After lunch I get to my computer and I had a phone meeting invite with Avery and the NYC leader of VAN i had emailed in the morning. I was kind of nervous, but Josh was really nice and helpful. He gave us a lot of insight about the VAN and how to improve. I took a lot of notes and learned a lot from him. Since we present on Friday I had to work on my slide and the speech I was going to give so for the rest of the day I synthesized all the information and I wrote down what I was going to say. To end the day, I met with one of my other peers from the group to get feedback on my delivery skills and content of the slide.
Thursday July 21st – PricewaterhouseCoppersLLP (Boston, MA)
Today I got to the office at 8:30 am and went to my conference room. I looked at my emails and then got ready to attend an event at 10am. There is a lot of violence, police brutality, and racism going around in the US and this topic is not adhered in the office. Since PwC is a very diverse office they have decided it is important to have a conversation about these topics to be aware and sympathetic towards all members of the community. Tim Ryan, the US Chairman Partner, had prepared a video initiating these conversations. After the video I was very touched because I had realized all the blind spots I have and how little I was aware of the world around me. A lot of people shared their stories and it really made me think about how I need to learn more about these issues and be sympathetic. Also it made me think about how to be more respectful and understanding of my coworkers who find this very personal. After the video and for the rest of the afternoon I continued to improve my presentation with the feedback given from Allyson and Tiffany, our mentors, and also my teammates.
Friday July 22nd– PricewaterhouseCoppersLLP (Boston, MA)
Today I got to the office at 8:00 am and headed straight to the conference room to practice for my presentation. I felt prepared, but presentations always make me nervous. I challenged myself to only have one note card with keywords so I wouldn't be tempted to read. At 9:15 am I had my Exit Meeting with Ann Ulett, she asked me for feedback of the program and told me I got an offer for next year. I was very excited because I really like the firm, I feel I've built a strong network, and I feel it gives a lot of opportunities. I have applied for the Advisory Internship, but I will be notified next week about that. For now, Ann told me that I am welcome to come back for the Start Master Internship. I now have to reflect back on this experience and evaluate my major decision, I have experienced many careers and areas that I think I have a wider look of the business world. Now I can make a more informed decision on the career I want to pursue. Afterwards I met up one last time with my group to do a run through. When I entered the room I was very nervous there were three judges and a lot of public. When it was my turn I was very confident, I got lost while presenting, but I managed to find my place in y note cards and finish strong. I feel that something I could have done better is mention a personal connection to bring back the attention of the audience, but overall I feel I was very concise and relaxed. Overall I was very proud of our presentation, we presented the blind spots topic, our solution, and the importance of this topic. Especially wit all the violence going around the world the judges got very emotional and supportive of our topic. Our mentors were happy and so were we. After the presentation I had a lunch and learn with my Relationship Coach, Jay, who presented about the HeforShe initiative. Coincidentally, Jay talked about the same topic I talked about in my consulting presentation: gender blind spots. He is in charge of the HeforShe initiative in PwC and he mentioned how this has changed his careers.