Merle and Katharina are both doing an internship at Spread Group. We spoke to them to get an insight into the daily life of an intern, what tasks they enjoy most, and whether they recommend doing an internship at Spread Group (and yes, it is :)).
Hello you two! What exactly do you do at Spread Group.
Katharina: Hey, I’m Katharina, 20 years old and I’m in the 5th semester of studying Book Trade & Publishing at the University of Leipzig. I’m currently doing a six-months internship at Spreadshirt in the Marketplace Licensing department.
Merle: Hi, I’m Merle. I’m studying Media & Communication Studies in Ilmenau and I’m doing a 6-months internship at Spreadshirt that I need for my studies. I support the marketing team of the Create Your Own business unit. This is the area where customers can design their own clothes with photos, texts, or designs. I mainly take care of newsletters and blog posts.
Katharina, do tell us what you do in the licensing team at Spreadshirt?
Katharina: We work with licensing partners whose designs we sell on Spreadshirt’s marketplaces as well as external marketplaces such as Amazon. It’s a long process from design creation to communication with license partners to approval of designs and marketing. Well-known licenses at Spreadshirt include Harry Potter, Game of Thrones or Peanuts, for example.
And why did you decide to work for Spreadshirt or in the field of licensing? What does that have to do with your studies?
Katharina: I was already very interested in licensing during my degree course. I didn’t just want to see the licensing business from the publisher’s point of view, but also to get to know the perspective of a company as a licensee. It’s always good to see different processes. I chose Spreadshirt because the corporate philosophy appealed to me, and there were very good vibes during the interview.
What makes the atmosphere at Spreadshirt special for you?
Merle: The working atmosphere! You come here and immediately feel at home. I remember being super nervous at my job interview. But I was made to feel at ease during the interview very quickly. The whole team at Spreadshirt is totally nice and open.
Katharina: I also really appreciate that the atmosphere in the team is so good and that you can deal openly with criticism. Everyone is helpful, supportive and encourages the others with motivating feedback. There are also nice offers like fresh fruit, free soft drinks and feelgood activities that make a day in the office very pleasant.
Merle: You don’t feel like an intern since you’re given a specific area of responsibility and get down to work straight away. I thought I might have to do boring copy and paste stuff or spend days at the photocopier, but I was in for a pleasant surprise (laughs). The team is really welcoming!
What are your specific tasks and what’s your day-to-day work like at Spreadshirt?
Katharina: My internship is quite diverse. I experience the entire licensing process and can take on tasks independently. In addition, I take care of the communication with the license partners and create the appropriate products such as T-shirts, sweaters, or accessories in the backend. I accompanied the entire process of creating the designs as well as the decision-making process. In marketing, for example, I create graphics and videos for social media and offline campaigns. This is a good thing as it further increases my knowledge.
Merle: In the Create Your Own team at Spreadshirt, we send out at least one newsletter per week that gets published in four languages. I design the approximate structure in advance and decide which photos to use. Then I write posts for our SEO page and our Create Your Own blog and promote the blog posts on our Facebook, Instagram and other social media channels. Sometimes there are also research tasks where I gather information on various topics in marketing.
Do you have something like your own project in the internship?
Katharina: Yes! I was, for example, able to take over the support of individual license partners completely on my own. I’m also responsible for videos in marketing as part of the team and was able to try things out a bit.
Merle: I can say the same, I enjoy a lot of freedom. Especially when it comes to newsletters and blog posts, I have a free hand in creating them and can exercise creativity as well. The texts are checked by the copywriting team, but by and large I can take on the topics independently.
What do you enjoy most about your internship?
Merle: The tasks where I can get creative myself are the ones I enjoy the most. Especially creating the newsletter or writing my own texts.
Katharina: I enjoy the marketing part the most. That’s also what I found most exciting in my studies. It’s very nice that I can also deepen this in the licensing team.
Are there ever boring tasks that you don’t enjoy as much?
Katharina: Sending out contracts! Of course, it’s also part of it and is important because without contracts there are no license partners (laughs). But it’s quite monotonous. Other than that, there is always a lot of variety and I have never done the same task for a whole day.
Merle: I once had to recreate all the designs I had created over four months since the links had expired. This dragged on for two weeks, and after that I couldn’t stand doing that anymore. Tasks that drag on for so long obviously get less exciting at some point. But because the newsletters and topics vary every week, I actually quite enjoy it.
Have you experienced any memorable moments already?
Katharina: We generally have a lot of fun moments in the office, like throwing hoops with the mini basketball set. And for a Harry Potter shoot, we were provided with the original Nimbus 2000 broom by the license partner and were then allowed to take photos with it, which was also very exciting.
Merle: There’s never a dry day with my team. I wouldn’t have thought that you could have so much fun at work. There’s always something to laugh about, and funny situations keep coming up in our internal chats. Our team event was also a lot of fun when the whole team went bowling together. It’s very nice to see people from work having a fun time away from work.
How does the internship help with your professional orientation? And what will you do next?
Merle: The internship helped me a lot. I wasn’t really sure which direction I wanted to take after graduating, but now I know that I want to go into marketing. I’ll be going back to university, because I still have a year to go. After that, I would like to get my professional life going with a trainee position, for example.
Katharina: I have come to take great interest in the licensing sector. I only knew the theoretical side from my studies, and only the publishing perspective. The internship showed me that licensing is a really cool sector, and I can imagine doing something similar later. But for now, I’ll continue with my master’s degree.
Thank you very much for the interview and all the best for you!
Editor’s note: Katharina and Merle have since both got their professional career started at Spread Group. Katharina works as a student trainee in the Licensing team, and Merle is a project manager in the Create Your Own department.