Empowering, challenging, dynamic.
At least, that’s how Ingrid describes her internship experience at Singapore start-up, 2Stallions Digital Marketing Agency.
Hailing from Sweden, Ingrid Porat, jumped at the opportunity to intern at 2Stallions, a participating company in the KTH-NOC Singapore exchange programme by the National University of Singapore. As an engineering major, she knew nothing about Digital Marketing but was ready to take up the challenge as our first intern ever.
The allure of interning abroad in a faraway and tiny island called Singapore, scared her as much as it excited her. Yet, it turned out to be one of the greatest experience of her lifetime.
In just 6 months, Ingrid learnt a lot of different things from her Singapore internship that she could take back home to Sweden. From practical things like digital marketing knowledge to less tangible ones like Singapore food and work culture. She left with lots of good memories and a rewarding experience.
As her internship came to a close, she shared with us her experience as 2Stallions’ first ever intern from KTH, and what she really felt about the opportunity to do an internship in a small but bustling economy like Singapore.
Q: Describe 2Stallions in 3 words? Elaborate if you will.
Ingrid (I): Empowering. Challenging. Dynamic.
Empowering – From day one, you will be given a lot of responsibilities. They have very high expectations so when you manage to deliver all the hard tasks, you’ll feel a sense of empowerment. It will also make you feel more confident for having been trusted with the hard tasks.
Challenging – Your scope of work is broader and wider, so are the responsibilities. Since 2Stallions is a start-up, you need to work harder to make the business grow.
Dynamic – Everything is changing all the time since the digital landscape is constantly evolving. Opportunities come up, plans change and priorities get rearranged.
Q: How has 2Stallions differed from the other jobs that you’ve done?
I: My work experiences from Sweden are from companies like Scania and Ikea, which are very different in every way. It’s been a real learning experience and challenge. Since the company is much smaller than the previous ones I’ve been to, there are more responsibilities and also more opportunities. Things change constantly and you need to learn how to reprioritize things all the time. It’s hard because it is extremely different from what I am used to.
Q: Were your goals and expectations for your internship met?
I: The day before I was scheduled to leave for my Singapore student internship, I had final exams so I really didn’t have time dwell on my expectations. I arrived very open to everything. I am so happy to have learned about digital marketing and all the tools I can use for my future career.
One of the most important experience for me was learning how to work in a different country. It was harder [compared to working back home] but generally better, nicer and more fun. It exceeded all my expectations. Of course, I had to battle with a bit of homesickness but not as much as I would have thought. It’s been an adventure and one of the most fun working experience I’ve ever had.
Watch our interview with Ingrid and find out more about what she did at 2Stallions.
Q: If you could change something you did during your 6 months here, what would it be?
I: When I first started my student internship in Singapore, I was anxious about how the Asian culture works like – the hierarchy and politics. I didn’t speak up and bother the bosses about my work [in the beginning] because I was a bit scared. However, it seems like it was all in my head. They never told me that they didn’t have the time, neither did they do anything to intimidate me, really.
But [overtime], I learnt that when I spoke up and shared my ideas and opinions, they actually appreciated it. You are an asset to the company and they are interested in learning more about you.
So, if there’s one thing that I could change during my internship is that I wish I had spoken up sooner so I could have contributed more. Just be yourself and get to know the environment. See yourself as a resource and that you can contribute with a new perspective.
Q: What did you learn from your co-workers?
I: I’ve learned a lot from my co-workers – like how to work in teams and how the Asian culture works. However, I think the best I’ve learned from them is the ability to work with people from different cultures. We always work together as a whole team so I’ve really learned a lot, thanks to them.
Q: Any advice for students who will be interning in Singapore?
I: If you plan to do a student internship in Singapore, you need to have confidence in yourself. You also need to work hard and try to see as many parts of the company as possible. Get holistic views because this increases your understanding of the work you are doing. Also, don’t forget to allow yourself to have time to explore the country.
Q: What about to students thinking about interning abroad but haven’t made up their minds?
I: I love Sweden to death, so I actually hesitated before leaving because I am so used to the great living conditions in my country and the very organized life I have back home. However, after spending 6 months in Singapore, I forgot about my initial hesitations. The whole thing was a huge learning experience for me that I didn’t even have time to dwell on homesickness. If I felt this way after my experience, I’m sure everyone would too.
Q: What’s next for you and how did 2Stallions prepare you for that?
I: After my Singapore student internship at 2Stallions, I will be going back home to Sweden to start an internship at Scania, a truck manufacturing company for the rest of summer. After that, I’ll only have a year left of studying before I graduate and apply for jobs.
2Stallions has helped me understand what my education is about. I’ve been studying to be a problem solver so even in this situation (doing marketing instead of engineering), the skills I learnt helped me see how to best approach problems. But in more specific aspects, I’ve learnt a lot about diversity, remote teams, project management, and handling multiple responsibilities.
I’m grateful that 2Stallions has helped me grow as a person that has more confidence and self-esteem. I feel very positive now.
Note: Answers have been edited for clarity and structure.
Ready for an exciting internship in Singapore that pushes you to greater heights? Click here to get in touch with 2Stallions!