Experiential Learning in Action: An Intern’s Experience with Guider
Amanda Lo
Writer
3 minutes
Duration
March 4, 2024
Date

Experiential learning is a Learning and Development (L&D) initiative that is growing in recognition. Businesses understand that the benefits of experiential learning brings confidence to employees starting a new role, as well as brings benefits to the whole organization. 

I’m Amanda Lo, a student at Boston University currently interning at Guider. I am in my third year studying Business Administration with a concentration in Finance. Within this article, I’d like to take you through my experience with experiential learning and why every organization should implement this opportunity. 

Experiential Learning in action, by Amanda Lo. A birds-eye image of Boston University
Guider’s experiential learning experience in action – Amanda Lo, our intern from Boston University

My Employment History 

Prior to my role at Guider as a marketing intern, I worked a part-time job in high school, had multiple on-campus jobs in Boston, and had marketing internship experience at another B2B company. These roles involved event planning, coordinating with university staff, collaborating with students on a multitude of projects, writing content, organizing and utilizing graphic design skills. I have found that the skills that have stuck the most with me are the ones I learned from hands-on experience. Rather than being guided through a step-by-step process, I benefited from being put into a situation I needed to find my own way through and tweak my process as I go. 

Experiential Learning Experience

My past marketing internship was at a company in Gaithersburg, Maryland called Albert Uster Imports (AUI). They are a B2B fine foods company, specializing in chocolates and desserts. In fact, the chocolate coin atop some of the Disney cupcakes is made by AUI (and worth half a million dollars!). When I first started, I felt out of my depth. What do I know about photoshoots? Taste tests? Working with innovation departments? It turns out that I could catch on quite quickly. Within days, I was helping write social media posts, ranking my preferences at taste tests, and meeting with department heads daily. It was amazing how much I learned so fast by doing instead of easing into my work. I only had my managers to thank for implementing such a trusting network, and the same goes for my campus jobs. One role put me directly into event planning where I learned to use platforms that are prevalent in the corporate world like Avery, monday, Excel, Teams, and Slack. 

Part of the experiential learning experience is external experiences. Going out for a coffee chat, hosting Secret Santa, Friendsgiving, and showing appreciation to coworkers and supervisors where it’s due motivated me at my past jobs. While every company and every job is different, the similarities I notice the most between my favorite roles is the company culture. In order to gain as much knowledge as possible, the work environment that taught me the most has been my most social, inviting, and approachable coworkers. These types of people promote learning by doing: even me, writing this blog! At Guider, their attitude reflects their work. Each and every employee has gone through experiential learning in their own way, and we definitely channel this same approach into our organization and software. 

Experience with Mentoring

At each job that I have had, a mentor came in many different forms. Whether it was a student that had been working there for a few years, a professional with 20 years of experience, or a new supervisor of 6 months in a startup, I found that anyone could be a mentor: but only some were truly effective. Having a mentor offers so many benefits. They can help you find your footing in a new job or industry, make a new friend, and you can bring these mentoring skills to a future job. 

According to an article “The Best Mentors Ask These 8 Questions,” you will inevitably be faced with obstacles in your workplace, but a good mentor will prepare you for scenarios like this. Whether they tell you to identify your weak spots or facilitate a conversation to foster a safe space, it helps mentors understand who you are as a person and better guide you to the right path.

In order to benefit from experiential learning the way I did, going into work ready to learn with an open mind is most important. Every single organization does things differently, and being able to adapt to a new process can benefit your own. Whether it’s implementing experiential learning through projects or external experiences, I have found that it makes work more engaging. 

Why Guider Stood Out to Me

Guider stands out to me because they have a community within the company. Everyone in the company is welcoming, social, and energetic. The software is built to support learning and development initiatives in enterprise organizations; creating accurate and scalable mentoring relationships across the business. Whether it’s diversity and inclusion, leadership development or simply just learning a new skill, their mentoring software is built to adapt to every team and organisation. With my experience in mentoring, I know how helpful this would be, particularly when it comes to experiential learning. 

What's next?

Whenever you’re ready… here are 3 ways Guider can help you supercharge your L&D with mentoring:

See how much mentoring can save your business with our ROI calculator

We've crunched the numbers from all of our customers to work out the financial value of mentorship to businesses. It might be just what you need to get executive buy-in

Build your own mentoring programme

If you're looking to build and launch a mentoring programme in your organisation, then our guide is the best place to start.

Get a no-obligation quote for Guider's mentoring software

We get it, you want to know the price. Book a 20-minute call with our team and get a custom pricing proposal for your organisation. If it doesn't work for you, there's zero obligation to buy.

The Complete Mentoring Toolkit
Everything you need to create and scale an effective workplace mentoring programme. Includes: setup checklist, matching guide, expert advice, proving ROI and much more.

You might enjoy