Why I Enjoyed My Camden Internship Part One: Leadership

My name is Maurielle Yao and I’m here to share my summer leasing consultant internship experience in Tampa, Florida at Camden Westchase Park. I’m currently a student at the University of Florida, pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Finance with a minor in Real Estate. Having a real estate license and prior real estate experience, I know that I want to enter the commercial real estate industry. When I found out Camden was a Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For® for eight consecutive years, I did not take it lightly. I was extremely excited when I was offered the internship position and a chance to explore the apartment industry with Camden.

Real Estate Internship with Camden

My amazing work family at Camden Westchase Park. Seems like yesterday! (Left to right: Ruben, Rachel, Cindy, Nick, Will, Me, Angie, Mike, Ricardo)

Camden hit the perfect spot where I felt challenged and was able to showcase my skills. I also learned so much about the company and the industry, which has led me to realize a future career in property management. During my 12 weeks as an intern, I found five reasons why I enjoyed my summer experience at Camden Property Trust:

(1) the leadership opportunities
(2) the perks
(3) the culture
(4) the values
(5) the people

For my first guest blog post, I will be talking about how I became a better leader during my summer experience.

I learned leadership at my Real Estate internship with CamdenWorking onsite as a leasing consultant has taught me a lot about the apartment industry. There is a lot of action behind the scenes in order to keep an apartment community running smoothly. I learned that it was very important to stay motivated and positive all day. As someone with little sales experience, my first few weeks as a leasing consultant were not easy. I never imagined myself being a salesperson and have always viewed myself as a shy person. However, I stayed positive, faced my challenges head on, and took this as an opportunity to grow.

Be Strong. Staying confident and resilient are extremely important when going through obstacles. I combatted my shyness by becoming more knowledgeable about the company and the property where I was working. What’s great about Camden is that there are so many resources for employees! There is on-demand training, mentor/mentee programs, short videos, and even a Camden University where I took several courses, such as “How To Communicate Effectively.” Furthermore, I could easily ask my co-workers or even call a sister property for help. I believe that my willingness to grow and the support team I had made me a better leader. When I got my first lease, my Camden Westchase Park team was as excited as I was! They were extremely supportive and rooted for me every single day.

Don’t be afraid. Every person makes mistakes, but it’s the willingness to learn from them that makes a great leader. Even when I was out of my comfort zone, I embraced changes and was open to accepting new challenges. Aside from being a leasing consultant who tended to prospective residents, I also was in charge of resident events and functions. This internship kept me busy in the greatest ways possible. I planned and hosted a Wine Night, Bingo Night, several Pizza Nights, and even a Sunday Brunch! Although I was initially nervous hosting events, it was the residents’ smiles that made the nerves just go away. I even had the opportunity to host a motivational sales meeting! I appreciated all the responsibilities that I was entrusted in doing.

Opportunities to grow with a Camden Real Estate internship

For our sales meeting, I had groups write how to sculpt instructions for an object. Then, groups switched instructions and re-created the sculpture based on the group’s instructions. Look at the results! The purpose of this exercise was to work as a team to set a goal (the sculpture) and making sure that the goal plans (the instructions) were easily understood by others.

Lead from within. My best advice for any internship, especially an internship with Camden, is to be open-minded and find passion in every task. I truly felt like I was contributing to the success of the community and the company. I am so proud of what I have done and who I’ve become after this experience. During my internship, I’ve even had several residents tell me that I was the best leasing consultant they’ve ever met. I attribute it to the fact that Camden takes pride in investing in their employees and giving them the best opportunities for growth. I found passion in everything I did because I wanted to be the best leasing consultant I could be and also wanted to contribute to being the best community in the city and nation.

Work doesn’t feel like work when you love what you do! I am so thrilled to have been a part of such a fulfilling experience and to be able to share it with all of you. Tune into my next post to learn more about what exactly the Camden internship experience entailed and how the program allowed me to meet some amazing people.

A little bit about Maurielle:
Occupation at Camden: Leasing Consultant Intern at Camden Westchase Park in Tampa, Florida
Secret Talent: Oil painting and graphic design
Three words that describe her: “Never give up.”

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