Many universities have programs where students are required to complete professional industry placements in the form of ‘on-the-job’ training and experience. We regularly invite placement students to work with us for a placement experience. Our close relationship with Deakin University and the alignment between the University’s Master of Psychology (Organisational) and our work provides the perfect space for learning.
There are a number of reasons we love having placement students spend time with us. We love the buzz brought by new faces in the office, and we also love that we can give back to the profession by passing on learning we’ve acquired since completing our own studies. Placement students also provide valuable contributions to the business, highlighting new research and any current and upcoming trends in the thought leadership space. Finally, placement candidates are a good place to look for talent when expanding our team.
At the moment, we have two students completing placement with us. Eliza and Sean are both from the Master of Psychology (Organisational). We recently sat down with them to find out more about their experience with us!
1. Why organisational psychology?
Sean: After reading many books on how to get more out
of work and how to maximise job satisfaction, I decided that entering the
profession dedicated to solving these (and other) problems, organisational
psychology, was likely to be a safe career bet!
psychology has such a large variety of work and when executed well, has the
ability to have huge positive impacts for individuals, teams, and whole
organisations. It incorporates my passion for an individual’s wellbeing and
relationships whilst also tackling business and management issues such as
change management and organisational design.
2. There are many places you can approach for placement. What led you to choosing Spring Point?
Eliza: Spring Point grabbed my attention as it was a consultancy that worked across leadership, learning and performance culture. I was also impressed by the quality and variety of clients. Culturally, after speaking with Noel and Katie at Spring Point, I felt that my values were closely aligned with the organisation. Spring Point genuinely care about making me feel supported, whilst also making it a priority to push me out of my comfort zone.
3. What types of projects have you been involved in while on placement here?
Sean: I’ve been lucky to be involved in many projects, and I started placement by applying digital solutions such as eLearning to client problems. More recently I have been involved with building capability frameworks, development guides, volunteering programs, and the facilitation of a face-to-face manager workshop. All have been interesting, and all have provided me invaluable insights and lessons about the profession.
4. What are some highlights from your time here?
Eliza: Gosh so many. But two that come to mind are, being given the opportunity to interact with clients face-to-face within my first few weeks. It felt that Spring Point trusted me and prioritised my development. Also, getting to know everyone in the office very quickly. I’ve formed relationships with such intelligent, like-minded and inspiring individuals. And the team constantly engage with each other, with team lunches and knowledge shares on a Friday afternoon. It’s the real benefit of working for an organisation with less than 15 employees!
5. How has Spring Point pushed you out of your comfort zone to drive your learning?
Sean: I think the biggest adjustment has been working with moving timelines and targets within projects. One day you may have a plan to work on a particular project but end up having an urgent client request on another project take up the rest of your day. It’s a great opportunity to learn how to better juggle and prioritise competing demands in a way that non-consulting roles do not require.
6. What is one interesting thing about Spring Point that you didn’t know before you started your placement?
Eliza: That every day is so different! One day there may only be a few people in the office as everyone is meeting with clients, facilitating workshops or taking advantage of the flexible work arrangements, working from home or in a café. Whereas you may arrive the following day and there is a full house with everyone discussing which Bánh mì they are going to get for lunch when we walk down Clarendon Street together. We may even have Alfie the dog, our newest ‘employee’ join us.
7. What is one lesson this placement has taught you that you will take with you to future placements/employment?
Sean: The biggest thing I will take from this placement
is the importance of organisational culture on employee wellbeing/job
satisfaction. This is more anecdotal, but one of the things that has made this
placement so great for me is the wonderful culture of inclusion, continuous
improvement and interpersonal connection Spring Point has. The benefits of a
‘good’ organisational culture are discussed at length in our studies, but this
is the first time I have experienced it first-hand. Subsequently, I hope to
develop an ability to affect culture in a positive way wherever I work
throughout my career.
Eliza: Whilst I still have
a large portion of my placement to go, I have already learnt many valuable
lessons. One lesson that I have learnt it that showing initiative makes a
difference. Completing tasks in a timely matter is important, but being
resourceful and going the extra mile, even if you haven’t been asked to do so,
will always be appreciated. This is mutually beneficial for your development
and also for the organisation. The more effort that you put into your learning,
the more skills you will acquire and the better position you put yourself in
for when your placement concludes.
Are you a student who would like to do a placement with us? Get in touch! Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or call to have a chat 03 9699 6269.