Creating a positive intern experience at Zuora

July 29, 2022

If you search the internet for a background on the idea of internships, you’ll find out how the concept equates to the apprenticeship of medieval times. Imagine living with your boss until your training was completed 😅…but at least they fed you! 🍔

So, what does it mean to be an intern in today’s world and, more importantly, what is it like to be an intern at Zuora? Check out what some of our ZEOs had to say about it below.

Intern Manager and Chief of Staff, NoAm Sales Michael “Katz” Katzman focuses on two key takeaways for interns:

  • a tangible product or deliverable that transfers to skills and credentials for their resume AND
  • a full scope of the GTM, or go-to-market team—from people and roles to mission and strategy.

“We want our interns to feel connected to their work and the extension of the team,” says Katz. “If we nail these takeaways, Zuora can be a launch pad for your career.”

And, it’s working! We checked in with GTM Strategy Intern Riti Seth who is studying Marketing Analytics and Customer Intelligence at Pace University and says the highlight of her experience so far has been attending weekly forecast calls with Katz where various roles on the team come together to collaborate, problem-solve, and ground into strategy.

Amy Ly, Director, CSM, who also manages interns says “I also want [interns] to see Zuora as a company with a solid culture, so as they seek out future roles, they have a good place to benchmark from.”

Riddhi Bahadkar, a full-time MBA student at the University of San Francisco and Amy’s intern in Customer Success says, “The thing I loved the most about being a ZEO are the people I got connected to, since the start of my internship. All of them created such an inspirational and growing experience, which has fostered a culture of collaboration and empowerment across all teams.”

Katz goes on to explain that the positive intern experience serves Zuora as a whole.

“When organizations are growing as Zuora is, there are often more initiatives and ideas than the team has the capacity for,” he says. “Having an extra set of hands to analyze data and generate strategic insights enables us to act with conviction on reliable analysis and make better decisions quicker.”

Katz adds, “Creating a positive intern experience puts interns in the best position to succeed, and it helps Zuora establish a talent pipeline for first-time employees.”

Another important component of any positive internship experience will be effective mentoring. “Mentorship and networking are huge in the intern experience because it allows interns to get multiple perspectives on what it’s like to be working at Zuora,” Amy adds.

And so, in recognition of National Intern Day, which was June 28th, and to bring more networking to the forefront, Tyler Aguilar, university recruiter and intern program manager, hosted a virtual Lunch and Learn with Leadership event with a panel of speakers who shared experience and knowledge on career growth and development.

About 20 interns joined the event live, and the panelists shared a couple of core themes in the way of career advice.

Keep learning. The more curiosity you can bring to your role, the further you’ll grow. Push yourself to learn about other functions of the organization and take the time to understand the lens of their work. Find ways to connect with your end-user, because if you’re always keeping their needs in mind, you’ll be on the right track.

Be flexible and open. Be adaptable to the situation. Opportunities will reveal themselves, and you’ll see how your skill set fits into the organization in different ways. As you continue to understand and keep your ego out of the way, you’ll be surprised by where you’re guided.

You’re more prepared than you think. A good amount of people feel under-qualified or experience imposter syndrome. With the right team and manager, you’ll be able to grow your confidence and see your skill set and strengths more clearly.

Special thanks to ZEOs Amy Ly, Director of Customer Success, Karol Chudy, Director of Software Engineering, Scott Blashek, Director of Cloud Operations, and Travis Huch, VP Alliances for sharing your unique perspectives.

From marketing and business development, to technical consulting and software engineering, our internship program allows early talent professionals from varied backgrounds to make a meaningful impact on the success of our company. Learn more about Life at Zuora here.