Before starting my work experience with OxLEP, I was very nervous. After hearing stories from my friends of boring work experience placements spent making coffee and washing plates, I was worried I would waste the whole week standing around and completing pointless chores.
Once I reached OxLEP, I realised that my fears had been misplaced. My week was filled with a variety of interesting tasks, including observing an all-day photo shoot, attending a business event, and writing blogs for the OxLEP website. I developed valuable skills, like initiative and networking, and walked out of the office each day feeling like I had learned something.
My experience at OxLEP has helped to grow my confidence, and has taught me some useful lessons about the world of work.
A large part of the success of my work experience placement was the consideration that OxLEP put into planning it. Instead of giving me easy but useless tasks, they came up with things for me to do that tested my abilities and pushed me to do well.
A fulfilling work experience is good for young people, but it is also valuable to businesses. By presenting young people with opportunities to develop important skills, businesses can help to create an experienced and skilled workforce.
Work experience also sets up important links between talented young people and businesses. If someone enjoys their work experience, they are more likely to stay in touch with the business they worked with, allowing businesses to build contacts with skilled young people and – potentially – find valuable new employees.
By neglecting work experience, businesses are depriving themselves of priceless opportunities to strengthen their local workforce and establish beneficial relationships with young people in their community. Meaningful work experience is not just useful for young people – it is also a great asset to businesses.
Rose Poyser - work experience student