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PCN Intern Stories: With Neelanti Paul

Last week, we bid farewell to our Business Operations intern Neelanti Paul. We caught up with Neelanti on her last day to hear more about her time with us, her biggest takeaways and what’s next for her. Read ahead, by diving into the interview below!

Q1. Hi Neelanti, can you tell us a little bit about yourself? 

Hello, I am Neelanti, 21 years old and the Business Operations intern here at PCN! I was born in India, but raised in four different countries including Amsterdam, where I’ve been living for the past seven years. Currently I am finishing my last year of my bachelors degree in Business Economics at the UvA (both excited and anxious to finally graduate).

Neelanti outside our Keizersgracht office

Q2. How did your PCN journey as Business Operations intern begin?

Well this is an interesting story… I was actually first approached through Linkedin by one of the internal recruiters telling me about this position. At the time, I was very much eager to gain some first-hand experience for my studies, so when presented with such an opportunity I decided to take the leap. From there on, it was a smooth process with the tasks and interviews and the start of my PCN journey.

Q3. What do you work towards in your free time?

I am a food lover, foodie, any word that describes an utter passion for discovering new cuisines, eating them and also trying my hand at cooking them. So, you can find me either out in Amsterdam searching for new places to eat or baking at home – a new lockdown hobby! Recently there’s this show on Netflix that I’m hooked on ‘Restaurants on the Edge’ where a few food and design experts travel around the world to revive failing restaurants by connecting them to local culture and cuisine. Sometimes I think that if I didn’t choose economics, I probably would’ve ended up in the world of gastronomy.

Q4. How did you experience our company culture? 

To be honest, it was far beyond my expectation. When I first started, I thought that most office cultures tend to be very formal and reserved, but my experience at PCN broke all those stereotypes. Everyone here was so welcoming and friendly, my team that always looked out for each other and stepped in to help even without asking. This was made even better when Leia and Ebene (our office dogs) were there to brighten up your day. So, all in all, I think our company culture has a very positive environment that really nurtures and motivates its employees and I really enjoyed being a part of it. 

Neelanti and Leia

Q5. As a Business Operations intern at PCN, how did you feel about your training and mentoring?

Well I couldn’t have asked for a better mentor and team. Keir (my manager) helped me understand all the recruitment processes from scratch since I wasn’t really aware of how the recruitment business functions. From familiarising myself with candidate/client calls, to the daily tasks of a recruiter (i.e job spotting, editing JD’s or sourcing) he mentored and trained through every step. Also a big shoutout to my team, who really took their time and effort to help me with the side projects and the [never-ending ;)] surveys.

Q6. Can you share with us any new skills, techniques and knowledge you gained during your internship period?

Yes, certainly. I have noticed an improvement in my organisational and communication skills. Working with such a big and diverse team, I was compelled me to keep a clear head and track various tasks, all while being able to manage my own time and ensure the delivery of these projects. Additionally, if I were ever to end up in a recruitment consultant role down the line, then I can proudly say that PCN has shaped my understanding and provided me with basic skills of recruitment 101. 

Neelanti with our marketing analytics intern, Piril

Q7. Looking back, what’s the most important skill or characteristic for the next person in your role to possess?

I think the most important skills for the next person in my role would be to quickly analyse the situation and find a solution. A lot of the tasks like surveys, keeping a track of KPIs or sourcing, require one to have a keen sense of attention, so it is important to be able to keep track of all the tasks and also prioritise them. Apart from that, just be curious, eager to learn and confident in whatever you’re doing.

Q8. What do you believe is the next step in your career, and how did we help you get there?

For now, I’ll resume the last year of my bachelors and specialise in organisational economics. My plans after bachelors are yet to be planned (haha), as I am not very certain of which masters and stream of specialisation I would like to choose. Until then, I would like to gain more hands-on experience either through internships, traineeships or exchanges abroad. When I came to work here, I was excited for the opportunities to increase my knowledge and experience. For me, PCN was like a stepping stone that helped me grow both personally and professionally for my future endeavours.  

Q. Would you recommend this internship to other students? 

Yes definitely. It has been such a great learning experience for me. If anyone is seeking an internship in the field of business, I’d say this position would be a great opportunity for them to develop their skills and gain real exposure to working environments. I am happy to have been a part of PCN and call it my first internship experience. 

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