Summer Internships are not only about breaking down the barrier between the classroom and the corporate world. For many management aspirants, they bring down the walls of their own perceptions and limitations they set for themselves. Aditya Gajra recently experienced it firsthand as he completed his internship with Birla Sun Life Insurance (BSLI). He looks back on the experience and says, “Even though I was working with a renowned brand, initially I was overwhelmed with the tough prospect of selling insurance products. But after I managed to convert some leads and generate sales, it was the biggest confidence boost I could have gotten for my career.”
Learning the tricks of Sales
Aditya bagged the internship on the back of a branding project that SKIPS, Ahmadabad had brought to its campus. He also went through a personal interview where candidates were tested more on “will to sell rather than skills to sell.” Working in insurance sector is indeed challenging, and that’s where many candidates limit their potential. Thankfully, Aditya gained in confidence as the internship progressed. “I learned the steps to a successful sales call. My professor would say that it’s not about selling the product but selling YOU. I experienced that on the field. I presented myself, delved deeply into the products and that of competitors, then charted down what makes BSLI’s offerings unique” he recounts.
Important life lessons
One of the hardest aspects of working in Sales is the rejection you have to face. Aditya had his fair share of rejection during the internship but he decided to learn from the experience. There was a point when he felt that the tunnel was quite long, but he could see the light at the end of it. “After consistent efforts I was able to convert a few clients and that really felt good. I think in sales it is okay if you are not able to convert leads, but if you are not putting the efforts into lead generation then you are in trouble. Through my efforts I became confident of my skills and will take that self-belief with me in the future,” he says thoughtfully.
Beating the blues out of the hurdles
After having his SIP experience, Aditya believes that internships are integral for management learning because they give you exposure to real life challenges. He has already worked on two live projects and is presently working on the third at his B School. According to him the internship has now taken that practical exposure to a higher level. “Today I realize that to do well in the industry you need to have the right approach. You need to keep evolving, using smart and efficient techniques to get to your goals. Once you have managed to do that, there is no stopping you in your corporate journey,” he ends brimming with confidence.