Posted July 28, 2016

What’s it like? A day in the life of a Blinds.com intern

The Blinds.com team loves working with  interns in many of our departments – they bring fresh eyes and new perspectives to our project teams.  Read on to learn what one intern, Meghan Forest, experienced during her time at the Blinds.complex:

When I was offered the role of Company History and Culture Curatorial Intern for Blinds.com last March, I had some reservations.

First: I was passionate about museums (in fact, I’m devoting my life to them!), but I didn’t know if my previous experience had prepared me to best showcase Blinds.com’s unique company history and culture.

Second: It seemed impossible to come up with a design, order materials, and install an exhibit within the eight week span of the internship.

Third: The Blinds.complex is based in Houston, Texas. I lived 1,500 miles away in Allendale, Michigan.

Not that any of that stopped me from accepting the position, packing up my tiny car, and moving to Texas for the summer.

The last eight weeks at Blinds.com have been a whirlwind of new experiences for me. My big project involved sifting through hundreds of company historical documents and designing an exhibit space for an upcoming office expansion that communicated Blinds.com’s values and mission.

In order to do that, however, I had to learn what those values and that mission really meant. I had read about them onlineImprove Continuously, Experiment without Fear of Failure, Speak Up and Be Yourself, and Enjoy the Ride—but that hadn’t prepared me for how completely they are embraced by everybody I met at Blinds.com.

These core values structure the everyday thrum of the office and guide the actions of every employee from the CEO to new hires. Unsurprisingly, I found myself beginning to embody them, too, as the weeks wore on.

I improved continuously. I approach every task with the intention to perform at the top of my ability, but this value encouraged me to change how I defined my “best.” From pitching design ideas to the CEO to figuring out a new 3D modeling program, it’s hard to believe I have learned so much in so little time.

I experimented without fear. Accepting this placement, an entire nation away from my comfort zone, was somewhat of an experiment itself. Likewise almost everything I did as a Blinds.com intern was some form of an experiment for me. I had never actually designed an exhibit before starting at Blinds, and the process turned out to be one extended series of failures. Design ideas didn’t work or were rejected because they didn’t “feel right.” I can’t count the number of times I headed back to the drawing board in the last eight weeks. But those failures didn’t stop me and, what’s more, they built up to ultimate success. I could not have completed my project if I had been too afraid of feedback to try one more time.

I spoke up. I got up in front of the entire company and introduced myself (I even sang in front of people… something I’ve avoided since middle school!). I defended my project and negotiated to preserve my vision for the exhibit space. I met with the CEO, CFO, and Home Depot representatives regularly to keep them apprised of my progress. Personally, I think it’s pretty cool that, at 21 years old, the CEO of a successful company valued and respected what I had to say.

And you better believe I enjoyed the ride – every minute of it! It was amazing to work in a place where people greet you with a smile (even before they’ve had their coffee), everybody is willing to answer your questions (even—maybe especially—if they’re silly), and a professional is willing to give up their time to mentor you (I’m looking at you, Kara). It’s easy to write off the core values as good PR; that’s what I thought. But Blinds.com-mers actually live them and now I can say I do too.

That leads me to Blinds.com’s mission: To Help People Become Better Than They Ever Though Possible.

I don’t have much more to say about this one except that they have definitively accomplished it, where I am concerned. I am a more confident, more competent employee than when I joined the Blinds.com team, and I am inestimably grateful for that.

>> Are you looking for your own WOW-worthy internship or career building experience?  Be sure to check out our Careers page to find out what roles we’re hiring for right now!