This summer, I had the great opportunity of interning at SVN/Stewart Commercial Group. Although my main focus was market research and sales, this internship offered me a diverse set of experiences. I learned many new kinds of software, including Costar and Apto. I’ve automated the process of data collection by using a webcrawler, and wrote a tutorial for the office to increase efficiency. I learned how to use the most advanced tools in Excel, and my programming skills proved useful for writing Excel macros– programs that automate workflow. Whereas someone without the ability to program might spend a full day creating, positioning, filling, and formatting text boxes for 287 different entries, I did this in seconds by writing a simple macro.
One of the most valuable experiences was learning about client relations, cold calling, and phone etiquette. Every day at the office, I had the opportunity to listen to the brokers on their phones and measure their speaking styles. In addition, my mentor had me listen in on some important calls to see how she handled the different questions and negotiated with the client. Learning about proper communication is crucial for any business context, and is an important part of managing clients.
During this internship, I focused much of my free time studying Watson’s Strategy: An Introduction to Game Theory. In the future, I look forward to taking UMich’s intro game theory class as part of my Economics curriculum, as I see a lot of potential for mathematical decision making in the fields of sales and marketing.