What a great opportunity!
This summer, I was lucky to snatch an internship at T4G in the Saint John, NB office. I worked primarily with T4G marketing and the Saint John development team. Still being in high school, my experience is limited – freelance web design work, a couple for-fun-apps, and some other things that teenage geeks do in their spare time. I developed many new skills and learned about some great tools this summer. Nonetheless, the concepts that are embedded in T4G culture are really what have impacted me. It’s hard to keep my experience brief, but I would like to summarize it in three main ideas.
It’s about the people
This sentence may seem a bit cliché, however it fits. At T4G, nine times out of ten, we’re not reinventing the wheel. We’re using the same technologies as anyone else. BUT what differentiates T4G is “The Intelligent Application of Technology,” which is only possible because of the creative, smart people at T4G.
Gist: You can have the sexiest product, best business plan, and coolest technologies but if you don’t have great people with big brains it doesn’t matter.
The Big Picture
Last week, Cathy Simpson asked me to come to her office. We were working on building some graphics and a presentation for a customer. I should have known better by now, but I thought she would just explain what it should look like, what colors, etc. Instead she asked me to take a seat and began to talk of all the details about the future of this industry and why it was so important to all of us – it was super cool and it made a huge difference.
This certainly wasn’t the only time she or others took time to evaluate the big picture with me. Every time I felt more connected to the project and completed better work because of it.
Gist: The Big Picture matters to everyone.
“…Because it’s the right thing to do.”
James MacManus said these words when explaining why T4G was opening a hackerspace. I’ll have to be honest: even as an idealistic high school student, this made me chuckle. It was obvious however that everyone else in the room was comfortable with these romantic concepts. I quickly realized this “do-what’s-right” attitude is just so perfect. After all, Geoff Flood’s quote –“We do think, naively or not, that we can change the world”- could be the main reason I called and emailed repetitively for a job this summer.
When you have these fantastical motivations, people notice - employees notice, customers notice, I notice.
Gist: Doing what’s “right” always makes business sense.
These are just a few of the great things I learned from T4G this summer. Today, being my last day I’ll definitely miss it (though I think I’ll enjoy the week off sleeping in before I head back for my final high school year.) T4G is truly a great place to work and you are all fortunate to be a part of it.
Thanks to everyone who helped me along the way and hopefully our paths will cross in the future.