March 24, 2017

MBA Internship Search: Kevin Payne

Over the next week, the Life at Weatherhead blog will feature conversations with students, as they share their experience on the internship search. If you missed it, read the first post in there series. Today we are featuring first year MBA student, and Intern at BrownFlynn, Kevin Payne:

Kevin Payne, Full-time MBA Student 
When did you start your internship search?
My search started as soon as school began, though that is not to say I immediately started applying for internships. Rather I began by meeting with CMO biweekly to discuss my career interests and by connecting with local alumni with the assistance of CMO. My conversations with CMO established both a rhythm to my search and built a foundation to work off when I submitted applications towards the end of the first semester.

What advice from CMO helped you on your search? Where else did you get helpful advice from?
I took away several great tips from CMO’s fall workshops. The session hosted by Steve Dalton, author of the 2 Hour Job Search, provided a great framework to strategically identify and connect with alumni that I have used successfully on numerous occasions. I also looked to the second year MBA cohort for valuable perspective and advice.

How did you learn about the opportunity? What was the process like?
I first heard about BrownFlynn during an early meeting with CMO. With CMO’s introduction, I met Sarah Corrigan, an alumni working as a senior consultant at BrownFlynn. Sarah’s description of her work and the company culture inspired me to learn more, and with her help, I interviewed Barb Brown, Co-Founder & Principle, for a class project. After speaking to Barb, BrownFlynn exceeded all my expectations for an internship host company.
I applied for an internship posting on their website in early January and interviewed a couple weeks later with a senior consultant. Prior to receiving a job offer, I happened to meet two other BrownFlynn employees during a campus and community event. These serendipitous interactions reinforced my aspirations to work at BrownFlynn, and I imagine may have influenced the final decision to offer me an internship.
Looking back, the interview with BrownFlynn started well before I applied and extended through the weeks following my interview.

Was this your only target company or did you have others?
I applied to three companies and received two offers. Early on, I researched numerous opportunities but selected three to focus on.
What advice would you give to other students looking for an internship?
First, it is never too early to start looking for an internship! Second, seek out networking opportunities that allow your genuine self to flourish. For me, formal interviews and networking sessions are often stifling so I look for opportunities to network one on one or events where networking is not the focus.

What is something that you wish you knew before starting your internship search?
A strong resume and cover letter alone will open few career opportunities. Even the strongest resume or most eloquent cover letter is a poor replacement to making a genuine connection with someone.

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