O-Tern Project 2018: That’s A Wrap!

After a summer of hard work, the O-terns have finished their project with Seven Sundays.

In the beginning of this internship program, I thought it was a cliché when we were told how quickly the summer would fly by. Well, we’re now in week 13, the final week of the O-ternship, and man, the summer has flown by! Last week was the week we’d all been waiting for, the much-anticipated final presentation to our client Seven Sundays.

Monday and Tuesday were extremely busy days for the O-terns as we scrambled to perfect each of our contributions to the final deck and then rehearse, rehearse, rehearse. When the final deck was ready to go, we had over 110 slides filled with MuesliWagen-specific strategy, best practices, Muesli flavor names, and so much more. It may sound like a lot, but this was a very condensed glimpse into an entire summer’s worth of hard work.

Before presenting to our client, we had the opportunity to present to the ICF Olson executive leadership team and our managers, who have guided us through the project. This was great practice for our presentation to Seven Sundays; it gave us time to get feedback from the professionals and prepare ourselves for the real deal!

On Thursday, we wrapped up last-minute edits and did a final run-through. By now we were all extremely familiar with not only our own parts, but everyone else’s, which, of course, is a good thing. By the end of the day, we felt ready to show Seven Sundays just how great our work this summer had turned out.

We showed up bright and early on the day of the presentation, some anxious, others completely relaxed. I’ll admit I was one of the anxious ones. We’d gotten great feedback, and everyone was prepared, but public speaking isn’t always my strong suit. That being said, the whole team of O-terns was extremely excited. Seven Sundays’ co-founders, Hannah and Brady, arrived promptly at 9:15 and we jumped right in. We broke our presentation down into disciplines, e.g. social, analytics, paid media, etc., and each person spoke to their own work.

The presentation itself took just about an hour. As we neared the end, I could tell everyone was eager to hear what Hannah and Brady had to say. At its conclusion, we all took a collective sigh of relief, as Hannah and Brady smiled from ear to ear. They were so pleased with our work and really grateful for the amount of effort we put into the project. They asked questions and shared their initial thoughts, and we had a really good discussion. And just like that, the project came to a close.

This O-ternship has been a massive learning experience for the ten of us, and not just within each of our “disciplines.” We also learned how to work as a cohesive group, how to work under pressure, and how to navigate an entire project with a real-world client. Now that we’re done with the project, it feels weird not to spend the majority of our days together. All ten O-terns have been offered either a full-time position or an internship extension, so we’ll all still see each other around, but the end is definitely bittersweet. Thanks for following my O-tern experience this summer — that’s all folks!