How to Promote Yourself for an Internship in Japan

I often receive this question from international students seeking advice on job hunting: ‘I want to participate in an internship at a Japanese company, but how should I write my self-promotion (自己PR)?

Lately, many foreign exchange students have been asking me this question. Self-promotion is crucial when applying to Japanese companies, as they often require a self-PR during their selection process for internships. Therefore, crafting an effective self-PR is extremely important to successfully pass the internship selection.

In this article, I will provide a complete guide on how to write your self-PR for internship applications. By reading this article, you will gain a clear understanding of what and how to write in your internship self-PR. So, please continue reading until the end.

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Where do companies focus when reviewing a self-promotion (自己PR)?

When you want to write  自己PR but find yourself unsure about what to include, and even after 2 to 3 hours you’ve ended up with nothing, it’s a familiar situation, isn’t it?

In such moments, it’s crucial to first consider what companies are aiming to achieve through your 自己PR.

Once you understand what the company is interested in, what to write should become clear.

So, first, let’s think about “Where do companies focus when reviewing自己PR?”

Point 1: Fit with the Company

Companies assess the fit with their organization through your self-promotion (自己PR).

In their selection process, companies aim to hire candidates who align with their values and culture.

Therefore, in the internship self-PR, they are checking whether the student’s values and perspectives match those of the company.

Point 2: Clarity of Content

Recruiters evaluate the clarity of your self-promotion (自己PR).

Recruiters go through hundreds of application materials in a day, leaving them with limited time to thoroughly read each student’s 自己PR.

Hence, it’s important to clearly convey your strengths in your 自己PR. If the content of your 自己PR is unclear, recruiters might decide to reject it without reading it till the end.

Point 3: Student’s Skills and Traits

Companies use your self-promotion (自己PR) to assess your skills and traits.

Through internships, companies appeal to students who closely match the qualities they seek in an individual.

Therefore, to determine if a student fits the profile that the company is looking for, they check what skills and characteristics the student possesses.

Up to this point, we’ve introduced what companies want to learn through 自己PR.

However, for students who now understand what companies are interested in but are unsure how to actually write their self-PR, I’ll provide a simple explanation of how to craft it.

How to Write an Internship 自己PR

Step 1: Highlight Your Strengths

When composing your self-promotion (自己PR) for an internship, start by briefly outlining the strengths and skills you possess.

For instance, it’s essential to express statements like, “私の強みは〇〇です.”

To effectively convey your appealing attributes to recruiters, it’s recommended to begin with your conclusion, making it easier for them to grasp your key selling points.

Step 2: Explain Your Experiences and Episodes

To convince recruiters, it’s essential to provide concrete examples of experiences or episodes where you showcased your strengths in自己PR.

In this section, explain in detail how you leveraged your strengths, focusing on the actions taken rather than just the outcomes.

Be conscious of selecting experiences or episodes where you effectively demonstrated your strengths and describe them in a specific and detailed manner.

Step 3: State Your Internship Aspirations

In your self-promotion (self-PR), it’s important not only to showcase your strengths but also to outline what you aim to achieve by applying those strengths during the internship.

By connecting your strengths with the goals you want to accomplish during the internship, you can effectively demonstrate your motivation and purpose for participating.

Avoid highlighting strengths or skills that are unrelated to the internship’s context.

Key Points for Writing an Effective 自己PR

Before submitting your 自己PR to the company, let’s check these four points:

Point 1: Do You Understand the Desired Candidate Profile?

To effectively showcase strengths applicable to the company’s internship, understanding the profile of the candidate the company seeks is crucial.

Before submitting your 自己PR, ensure that you are highlighting strengths and skills that align with the candidate profile the company is looking for.

Point 2: Are You Conveying Your Values and Skills Clearly?

Check whether you are effectively conveying your values and skills in your self-promotion.

Instead of simply presenting experiences and episodes in your 自己PR, use them as a platform to showcase your values and skills.

Ensure that your self-PR communicates your values and skills clearly.

Point 3: Is Your Writing Understandable to Everyone?

When creating your 自己PR, it’s most important to write in a way that even recruiters who don’t know you can understand.

To achieve this, check for the use of jargon and ensure your 自己PR is structured with a clear conclusion.

Make sure that 自己PR  avoids using technical terms and presents information in a clear and understandable manner, allowing anyone, including recruiters, to comprehend it.

Point 4: Is it Aligned with the Internship’s Content?

Check if the strengths you’re highlighting in your 自己PR align with the content of the internship.

To convey your enthusiasm and goals for the internship, choose strengths that can be applied effectively within the scope of the internship.

Ensure that the strengths you emphasize in your 自己PR are relevant to the internship and can contribute to your participation.

Finally、To all international students, the most important factor when seeking employment in Japan is mastering the Japanese language. Smooth communication in Japan’s workplace environment and society relies on using the right words to express yourself effectively. Furthermore, having strong Japanese language skills provides advantages in various situations, from selecting job opportunities to interviews and actual job tasks. By enhancing your Japanese language proficiency, you can approach your work with confidence.

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