How to handle placement when your skirt rips in front of your boss
When you're interning impressions are everything.
You need to come across as friendly, impossibly helpful and willing to learn. In a professional environment, you also need to look the part.
I'm a fashionista at heart, and invested in a pretty damn sassy working wardrobe before starting the course. The trouble with fancy clothes is that, while you may look the part in them, they are impractical by default.
So what happened in my news meeting this morning when I tried to casually slide onto a bench in an impossibly tight (but totally on point) pencil skirt? It ripped. Audibly. In front of my news editor. Killmenow.
Ever the composed journalist, I somehow sat through the meeting and, despite my cheeks growing redder by the second, even managed to contribute a few ideas. This line of work throws out all kinds of challenging situations, so I must have learnt something about handling them over the past eight weeks.
Of course, the game was up when it was time to return to our desks. And so, to an all-male team, I had to disclose the fact that I couldn't stand up without revealing a generous amount of flesh to the entire office. They were understanding, but there's no escaping that level of embarrassment (I can only hope they feel so sorry for me that they feel compelled to offer me a job).
Luckily (and I truly believe in a higher power after this) EMAP is located in the same building as Oasis fashion, where incidentally my ripped skirt was from. I used my blogging connections to blag myself in, and the lovely team let me play dress up in their sample cupboard. The exact words of the social media editor were: "Pick anything you like."
I'm going to return my skirt tomorrow, hopefully in exchange for my dignity. I don't know if I'll ever fully recover from the humiliation that ensued, but I can't deny that it makes a great story. Plus I'm sure the image of me hobbling out the newsroom in a split pencil skirt will make a lasting impression on the team at Retail Week.
At the very least, it can't get any worse.
"Working around the world for AFP, from the wreckage of post-earthquake Haiti to the billionaires' economic summit in Davos, I've met and worked with graduates of some of the biggest journalism schools in Paris and New York. None of them, however, had as good a grounding as I received at PA Newcastle in news gathering basics: pointed questioning, tight writing; and fast shorthand."
Dave Clark // Diplomatic correspondent, AFP