What’s it like to have a job where you have regular roundtable discussions with executives and have a barbeque in the backyard of the richest man in the world?
Is it possible to work with a company that is so eager to invest in your ideas you feel that as big as you can dream they will back you up, and where your only grievance is that you are having such a great time, you almost forget that it’s real work?
Just ask Nina Sundberg, who interned in the server and tools division of the systems management group at Microsoft.
“Even though I was just there for a short period of time, I felt like I had the opportunity to be as successful as I could be,” Sundberg gushed of her summer 2003 experience.
After a half-year stint at Dell and three years at Amazon, Sundberg knew she was ready for something different. While completing her MBA, she interned at Microsoft for one summer before accepting a job with the same team for the fall. She’s been there for three years since.
“I ended up with two opportunities to go to MSN [because of my Amazon experience] and one to stay in systems management. The reason I decided to stay in systems management was that it was emerging for Microsoft, but it was at enough of a critical mass that we weren’t just a startup. I wanted to gain new experiences,” Sundberg said.
Working in a more established startup environment proved ideal for Sundberg, who was brimming with ideas. As a newbie, most workplaces weren’t chomping at the bit to hear her out.
“One of my favorite parts about the work I did, and do now, is Microsoft’s willingness to invest,” said Sundberg. “I feel like I’ve come up with some crazy ideas, but they always are willing to listen and invest in things, some which have been successful and others that were not. I feel totally empowered to look at something completely different, and even when some of my suggestions fail, it’s very much a ‘let’s go for it!’ culture.”
At Dell and Amazon, Sundberg felt more of a hesitancy about trying out new ideas. “At Microsoft, I feel like anything I can come up with is something we can go after,” she said.
Bill Gates, Microsoft, Interns, Summer Interns, Party