The journey of an international placement student
Posted on: June 14th 2023 · read
From number crunching to sandwich lunching: The journey of an international placement student 📈
MHA is delighted to welcome Tim who has joined our Birmingham office on a student placement from Germany. We caught up with him to see how he's doing. He is already making a positive contribution to the team and is looking forward to the rest of his placement with us.
Tell us about yourself
Hey, I'm Tim! Studying Business Administration and Economics with a major in Finance in Stuttgart. I've had incredible placements at the Stuttgart Stock Exchange and Mercedes-Benz, but I wanted more experience and to improve my English skills. Luckily, Baker Tilly gave me the perfect opportunity to achieve both! Currently, I'm loving my international internship with the MHA Audit team, learning and growing every single day.
Have you experienced any culture shocks?
Oh, definitely! In the UK, feedback is wrapped in niceties and delivered with a smile, even when you've made a mistake. In Germany, feedback is more direct, assuming that it won't be taken personally. It's not about one being better than the other; they're just different approaches to value and appreciate. Oh, and there’s no such thing as a 'meal deal' in German supermarkets, people don’t really eat sandwiches at all. But you know what? I've grown to love them.
What have you learnt so far?
As part of the audit team, my daily tasks are always interesting and varied. I get to visit client sites, chatting with accountants and seeing how they work. Even though I'm on an international placement, I feel fully involved in audits. The support and guidance from my team are priceless, always there to answer my questions and provide guidance.
Stepping out of your comfort zone and embracing unfamiliar situations is the secret to personal and professional growth. Whether it's being away from loved ones or adapting to a new work environment, these experiences teach me valuable lessons. I've learned the importance of language, cultural understanding, and different approaches to work, especially in audit. It's not just about numbers; it's about understanding people, their values, and their procedures. These experiences have expanded my knowledge and broadened my horizons.
What advice would you give to students considering a placement?
If you thrive on pushing boundaries, I highly recommend an internship. If immersing yourself with MHA's amazing people sounds exciting to you, then this program is an absolute perfect fit. It's a fantastic opportunity to challenge yourself, gain valuable experiences, and grow both personally and professionally. Don't miss out! 😊