Step Reflection

Michael Bougie


Summer Internship In Madrid Spain


  1. Please provide a brief description of your STEP Signature Project

This summer I worked as a Digital Business Solutions intern for Ericsson in Madrid Spain. I worked on two large projects, the first being a Impact project discussing the potential Use Cases for 5g internet in different industries. The second project I conducted was a business model for the monetization of private spatiotemporal data.


  1. What about your understanding of yourself, your assumptions, or your view of the world changed/transformed while completing your STEP Signature Project?

My Step project in Madrid was definitely transformative in my understanding of different cultures and business’s. It gave me a great appreciation of not only the life that we have as an American citizen but for the new relationships that you can make everyday. Also, the corporation I worked for gave me great insight on how a massive company maintains it culture and taught me so many things about an industry I had never really thought of. The telecommunications industry is overlooked by the average person that uses it in their everyday life. Overall, everyday work interactions with young professionals really gave me a good idea of what to expect in a professional setting which is great experience.


  1. What events, interactions, relationships, or activities during your STEP Signature Project led to the change/transformation that you discussed in #2, and how did those affect you?


I’m going to define the 3 relationships that most led to my growth over my two months in Madrid Spain. The first relationship that was the most influential was definitely with my boss, Manuel. Manuel is the Head of Technology and Innovation at Ericsson Madrid’s office. He has a massive amount of responsibilities but still made plenty of time to mentor me throughout the entire summer. During the projects I conducted, regardless of how much time, effort, or thought I put into each part of each project, he would push me to think about every angle. I can’t discuss heavily the specifics of my 5g innovation project due to a confidentiality agreement, but he worked with me extensively to adapt to every weakness my idea encountered while finalizing it. It was his attention to detail and supportive mentoring that made this experience so excellent.

The second group of people I grew from the most were the other co-workers and interns at the Ericsson office. These guys; Hector, Sam, Pablo, Nacho, and Miguel, made it fun to go to work everyday and were quick to include me in their daily coffee breaks. One of the coolest things that happened during my work this trip were these coffee breaks, we would talk about such a wide range of things. Whether it was politics, sports, laws, customs, even more politics or our dreams, it was incredible to see your life from an entire different culture. My friend Sam had grown up in Syria, and now lived in Madrid as a Coder while much of his family still lived not far from a warzone. The one thing he always talked about was his dream to come study or work in the States but the cost was much to great for him to afford with all the financial aid he sent home to his family. If that alone does not give you perspective on your current struggles, I don’t know what will. We discussed politics from each angle and they told me their views of different American stereotypes. All of these conversations will be something that gives me more insight on my day to day life than my job ever could and will be something I remember.

The third group of people that influenced me in a much different way would be the MBA students at IE business school that conducted the 5g impact project simultaneously to me. Once again, subject matter is confidential, but the way I was able to watch a group of students from the one of the most prestigious MBA programs in the world interact was something I will not soon forget. The way they work in teams and delegate work is something that I can definitely apply to the way I work on group projects at school. They were very disciplined in their conversations and challenged every idea the best they could to get the best results, and adapted when they received feedback from the CEO of each teams particular company.


  1. Why is this change/transformation significant or valuable for your life?

All of the changes and experiences I discussed from my summer internship will be very significant in my life for so many reasons. First and foremost, my internship experience makes me a significantly better internship candidate for the next year as I take the next steps in finding a career. Also the way that my boss influenced my way of thinking will extremely useful inside and outside both the office and the classroom for the rest of my life. It will allow me to expand my thought process and not leave it to be narrow. Lastly just appreciation of what I have and perspective on daily life in the US that my corkers gave to me is something I don’t plan on forgetting soon. Overall the experiences from my Summer 2017 internship is something I cant replace.

One thought on “Step Reflection

  1. It sounds like this experience provided a valuable taste of life in the working world. Furthermore, I appreciated your reflections about the meaningful relationships you developed as they supported the enhancement of important skills. And yes, perspective and acknowledgment of our privilege is important!

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