Guest Blog: Luc Johnston

 

Luc spills the beans on the skills he has learnt, his career aspirations and the COCO office antics

That’s me now finishing my 8th week of my internship here at COCO and it’s safe to say that it has been an incredibly enriching 2 months so far. I have managed to learn a wide range of skills like how to organise an efficient and successful event, process financial payments and communicate confidently over the phone, amongst other skills.

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I found myself at somewhat of a crossroads when I finished my university degree. All of a sudden it was time to choose a career and to start applying for jobs. However, I really felt disenchanted with the idea of pursuing a career in finance, or telecommunications or even sales for that matter, especially if it entailed moving to a big city like London. Realistically speaking, the charitable sector was the only area that I could envision myself working for in the future as it gives me a sense of pride and fulfillment in the work that I’m doing.

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Fortunately for me the COCO summer internship presented itself and it was quite frankly a position that I couldn’t turn down. During my time in the office I’ve had a wide range of tasks on my agenda and can say that my two favourite areas would be finance (strangely enough), as I feel I am learning really important financial and data handling skills that will prove to be useful later on in life, and the Corporate Partnership Proposals. Albeit the Proposals have been a little time consuming they are very important as they bring in a significant amount of money each year and moreover establish long lasting and fruitful relationships with businesses and businesspeople both regionally and nationally.

The toughest part of this internship has been adjusting to the professional working lifestyle. By that I am referring primarily to the early morning wake ups. Although, having said that, after a couple weeks I adjusted and got myself into the groove.

One of my more memorable experiences in the office would be the time that Heart FM gave us a special visit. You see for quite a while now we’ve been playing our very own version of ‘win before they sing’ in the office which has been a good laugh but has also unearthed one or two fiercely competitive spirits. Well anyway, the voice of the northeast himself Mr Tom Campbell caught wind of our little game and decided to pop in and orchestrate a special one just for us. There was a little breakdown in communication though, as we thought we were playing to be entered in the weekly £10,000 draw but we ended up with a dubious Heart FM flag and some 6p car stickers.

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At the end of the day I’ve had a superb time working here and I’ve really benefited on a personal and professional level from picking the brains of each member of staff here to find out exactly how this organisation ticks and to also help me in my own personal development. One of my biggest concerns when I arrived was that I would be an ‘add-on’ to the team and be assigned wishy-washy jobs. However I have been given a lot of responsibility and the team put a lot of faith in the 2 interns here and I believe both Becky and I have done pretty well as a consequence.

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