Interning at Jones IT
Tell us a little bit about yourself and what led you to come to Jones IT?
Hello! My name is Louis Caulet and I am from Paris, France where I am studying for my master’s degree in International Business Trade. I came to San Francisco to learn about the tech ecosystem by diving right in and learning in a hands-on environment. I read a lot about Silicon Valley and find the rise of tech companies in the last few decades to be a fascinating phenomenon. Jones IT was the best place for me to get real-world experience in sales, marketing, and project management while working in a startup environment.
Describe your first few days on the job at Jones IT:
Working at Jones IT was engaging from the start. Evan showed me around the office and Ersinan walked me through all the processes and tools. By the end of the week I was a pro at using all of the cloud-based software the team employs to get stuff done: Slack, Trello, Zapier, Google Drive, Zendesk, and so much more. I attended every team meeting to get an idea of what the team was working on and the nature of our business. Everybody welcomed me to their respective teams and offered to help me with any questions I had. I immediately felt comfortable working there.
During my second week I shadowed Roy and Jason during their weekly client visits. Shadowing them allowed me to see some of what what the techs do in action: diagnosing and fixing wifi issues, keeping computers safe from cyber attacks, and making sure that everybody at the client’s office had their needs met. Within two weeks I felt up to speed and had a clear understanding of the Jones IT core values.
What did you work on at Jones IT?
I worked on many different projects, some taking up to several weeks. Here are the highlights:
CRM Process Cleanup: I created and implemented a tagging system in the CRM we use, Capsule, so that we can quickly generate lists of contacts by company size, industry, contract, etc. I also cleaned up the overall system by going through all of our contacts and making sure they were properly tagged, adding client logos, and standardizing everything. I documented this project to help people add new contacts in Capsule using the same process after I leave.
CRM Migration: One of our clients had a CRM that just wasn’t working out for them. I created a process to migrate their system to Capsule CRM with templates in Trello to keep the project organized, then guided them through the process.
Client Appreciation Program: We wanted to facilitate better relationships with our customers, so I created a system to remind us to send different kinds of gifts to our customers at different times of the year: Holidays, anniversary of our contract, after big projects, and more. For this program, I also had to negotiate partnerships with our vendors.
Sales Manifesto: I created a handbook for the daily, weekly, monthly, and occasional tasks pertaining to sales at Jones IT. This manifesto is where you find everything about the sales process so that anyone on the team can pick up and take off with sales, if they need to.
Sales Process Improvements: A good salesperson knows that you have to be persistent and that you don’t always get the sale the first time around. However, we didn’t have a plan in place for reconnecting with our lost clients and leads. I created a system that helps us keep track of our lost leads and clients. This system even automatically reminds us to check in with them and see how things are going for them. In addition, I created email templates to help us save time and documented my work in our Sales Manifesto.
What IS the biggest difference between the business culture in France and the US?
The biggest difference is the business mentality and the overall exceptional work ethic of Jones IT. Everybody is fully dedicated to their job and the company. Each employee is part of a team that works together to ensure nothing slips through the cracks. If someone is sick or otherwise unable to get to something, someone else steps in. I have also been very impressed by people coming to work on Saturday to finish a project so that it’s ready for the client by the time they get to work on Monday. In a few words: work hard, play hard!
Some companies treat interns as external help for a short period of time and give them small irrelevant projects to do. At Jones IT, I have been treated like a full time employee from day one. I started with small projects and as soon as I proved myself, I was put in charge of bigger projects.
What is the best thing about the internship?
The best thing was the variety of tasks I had the chance to work on. I started by working on small or mid-size projects that were on hold, then once I finished those I got to work on bigger projects. The best thing about this internship was the mutual trust between the managers and me. My manager or I could come up with an idea and they gave me the freedom to model and complete the project as I saw fit. When I was done, we would review the project together and improve from there.
Greatest memory of the internship program?
The CEO, Evan, invited everybody and their friends and family to a Giants game. We tailgated in the parking lot, Evan grilled up a feast for us, then we all watched the game together! The Giants game is one of the numerous Jones IT traditions! ‘MERICA!
What was it like to fit in with the Jones IT culture?
I think it is pretty easy to fit in with the culture. People come from various different background and culture but if you’re a cool person and you like to work hard while listening to cool music, you will fit in easily. Everyone gets along well here and I was welcomed into the team right away… They even gave me a nickname: King Louis!
What are the biggest lessons you will take away from the internship?
One of my favorite lessons was the use of, “kaizens,” or continuous process improvement. After every project we reviewed what went well and how we could improve for the next time, even if the project went off perfectly. There is always room for improvement!
Some suggestions for incoming interns:
Jones IT is a great company to be an intern! I’m very thankful for this opportunity to work with the Jones IT team. I enjoyed every day because I got to work with passionate and brilliant people who inspired me and taught me something new every day. I would recommend Jones IT for anybody who wants to be part of something big. This company favors the learn by doing method and gives you a lot of creative freedom. You will always find help when you need it and learn skills that will help you for years to come.