Make Yourself Useful as a Team Member
- Use idle time on unfinished team tasks
- Ask how you can help other team members
- Keep the coffee pot full
- Remember opening and closing tasks
There is always so much to do in an animal care environment, whether that is in the veterinary industry, a boarding facility, a pet shop, daycare or any kind of shelter or rehabilitation centre.
Go beyond being friendly; help out! Students and work placement positions are often given light work. Once you learn the ropes, it can sometimes be done more quickly with extra time left in your schedule. Use any free or idle time to be helpful to the team. Find unfinished tasks such as areas that need cleaning or inventory that needs putting away, and take care of it.
Ask team members how you can help out others who are busy. Offer to do coffee runs or help keep the coffee pot fresh and full. One very helpful approach is remembering the full routine for opening or closing a shift, taking some of that burden off the regular team.
Wrapping Up Your Placement with Job Options
- Share your interest in the future
- Share how much you’ve enjoyed the work experience
- Talk about your career goals
- Say ‘Thank You’ to everyone
- Show desire for future job openings
Finally, be sure to wrap up your work placement with overt plans to stay or return, and generally to take your career to the next level. When the time is right, mention your plans for your future career and where you see yourself in the next year.
Share with your team and your supervisor how much you’ve enjoyed your time and how you would enjoy a more permanent role if one became available. There might be an opening at that moment, or your supervisor might keep your resume handy for the first possible position at your level.
Say ‘thank you’ to your supervisor or team with something they can remember. A card for the bulletin board is an excellent souvenir of your time spent with the organisation, thanking everyone for their time, mentorship, and companionship.
Be Prepared for a setback
Sometimes, there just won’t be a permanent role available when your work placement ends. There may even be policies against internally promoting students to paid positions. If the circumstances aren’t right, be prepared and cheerful when facing a negative response. These techniques also work for winning a powerful reference and possibly recommendations and networking from your supervisor instead.
Turning Your Veterinary or Animal Care Related Work Placement Into a Paying Job
When you find a work placement that you love, put in the time and effort to turn it into a permanent role. Maybe you can earn a place on the team; maybe you can’t. What you can do is build trust with and impress your supervisor, so they help you find your next ideal paying role, inside or outside the current organisation.
Looking for guidance on transforming your work placement into the next phase of your animal care career? Want to talk about your career plans or thinking about a pathway to veterinary nursing and want to know where to go next? Contact us today!