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What to do in a situation when my previous internship experience went bad?

James asked on Oct 22, 2019 - 4 answers

Hey Guys,

I am currently doing a 1 year masters in the UK and am sending off applications for Consultancy. During my undergrad, I did a 1 year internship at a big name consumer goods company (think P&G, Unilever, Nestle, Johnson&Johnson) in a product supply role. During my internship, I did not enjoy it whatsoever, and my overall performance was mediocre. My manager wasn't happy with me but I didn't get fired as I wasn't terrible either. Obviously I didn't get a return offer.

I am now worried if whatever company I am applying for will contact my previous employer and ask them about my performance and whether or not I got a return offer. Will they ask for a reference or anything? What can I do about such situation? Should I be honest and tell them I didnt get a return offer. I'm worried if they contact my previous manager and he tells them I was "poor".

Any advice will be appreciated

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Best Answer
Deniz
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replied on Oct 25, 2019
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Hi,

Background checks do not take place in most of the European offices (in some cases, they do not even ask for your diploma/transcripts). Even if they run the check, there is nothing to worry about as it won't be a performance-related discussion.

Best,

Deniz

Francesco
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replied on Oct 23, 2019
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Hi James,

as mentioned by Vlad, the background check is on the fact you worked in a previous company, not on your performance. The only risk I see is that one of the interviewers by chance knows your former boss and asks for feedback – I would say this is quite unlikely, thus I would not worry about it.

Hope this helps,

Francesco

Clara
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replied on Dec 10, 2019
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Disagree with some of the posts below, since MBB does background checks regading (1) academics and (2) past work experience. Actually, it´s done after you sign the contract, and in the contract itself there is a part where it says that if you have lied, they have the right to take it back -same as with the MBAs-.

This said, they won´t ask your previously company for feedback -it´s just too time consuming-. What for sure will happen is a question, as you were mentioning, about why not coming back. In that case, have your answer ready explaining yuor motives and it should be ok (e.g., lack of fit, you realized that particular industry/segment was not your thing, etc.)

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

Vlad
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replied on Oct 22, 2019
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Hi,

MBB companies do the background check but it's not about the feedbacks. They just need to check if you really worked there. So relax, and concentrate on interview prep

Best