After surviving their first ATAR year 10 Maths exam, four DSHS students were feeling ready for anything, even work experience. So off we went to work at BMO, one of the region’s biggest accounting and business advisory firms.
I originally thought we’d be put to work doing boring tasks like printing and errands, but we quickly learnt that we’d be doing more hands on work. In my five days at BMO, I was assigned to the marketing team where I got to do things like meeting a client about their marketing strategy, writing a blog, and researching advertising and events. The most nerve-wracking part was coming up with a marketing plan to promote the BMO Conference Centre and presenting my plan to the BMO Communications Manager and Conference Centre Manager.
I only had a short timeframe to work on it and was worried that it wasn’t very good. However, I felt pretty happy when the Communications Manager said that they would be using some of my ideas.
I also worked in Reception for half a day and found out that receptionists do a lot more than I thought they did. They had to sort all the letters, take phone calls, greet clients, make coffees, look after interview rooms and they know everything that’s going on.
Even though we came in during the busiest time of year when we thought they’d be stressed, they were all really friendly and willing to help.
As for the other work experience students they were assigned to accounting and financial planning.
Two of these students, Ajay and Analyn, ventured into the largest working area of BMO, accounting, and within the first 10 minutes of work were faced with the challenge of using excel. While Ajay found the program to be easy (or so he said), Analyn struggled not only with excel, but also with logging into the computer. Although at the start of her time here she struggled, Analyn is now able to skillfully use excel…and login in to the computer.
For Ajay the only thing he struggled with was how to find a bowl for his two minute noodles and took to using a cup.
One of the other work experience students Shaiming worked in the financial planning area and quickly learned how to do a variety of tasks from stamping to filing letters… he also learned how to survive in a room full of girls. However, one of his fastest learned things was how to find the vending machine. After just two days at BMO, he learned that he could have a soft drink each day during lunch.
One of the biggest challenges for me was learning how to get emails to work and where to save documents. But I quickly learnt. I also struggled with finding a bowl however unlike Ajay I continued to search, and was successful, instead of using a cup.
Overall it can be seen that despite the common misconception, teenagers are not good at using technology and don’t know everything, even where to find a bowl.