Life at eBay

Learning From Finance Leaders Across eBay

By: ebay News Team

Michael Meadows-Smith, part of eBay’s inaugural cohort of remote interns, shares his experience on the North America Ads Finance team and in learning from company leaders on their career paths.

Determined to foster the future of tech and ecommerce, eBay pushed forward with a virtual internship experience this summer to help shape the next generation of talent. We’re launching our Intern Spotlight Series and featuring interviews with the latest class of eBay interns to hear about how their virtual experience made an impact on their future careers in business, tech and marketing. eBay also offers opportunities to recent college graduates through the Finance Futures Program as a full-time hiring path for young professionals.

A finance and behavioral economics major at the University of Pennsylvania, Michael Meadows-Smith joined eBay as an intern this summer in hopes of learning more about the world of finance, especially as he prepares for his career after college. At the end of his 12-week experience, he came away with not only a stronger understanding of how a finance team operates within an organization but with a deeper appreciation of eBay’s culture of learning, helping and empowering others.

“What I’ve learned about eBay is that its employees really believe in this mission,” he said. “eBay’s employees are excited to come to work because they know they’re helping small businesses really make an impact in their communities and target markets.” 

Part of the inaugural class of virtual interns, Michael spent his summer with the North America Ads Finance team analyzing data, automating revenue models and working on various operational projects. Moreover, he spent his summer meeting with leaders to learn more about their career paths, all while gaining skills and real-world experience that will be instrumental for his future career, he said.

The eBay News Team recently spoke with Michael about his internship experience and learning from finance leaders throughout this summer.

What aspects of your internship stood out to you this summer? 

The culture. Before starting my internship, my view of eBay was from the outside looking in. I knew that it was a Fortune 300 company, and that it required high-caliber individuals to maintain that status. As soon as I started, I found that everyone was incredibly open and accessible, even individuals who worked closely with eBay’s leadership team. Over the course of the internship, I was astounded at the number of directors, vice presidents and C-suite executives the other interns and I had the privilege of interacting with and learning from.

What will you take away from your experience this summer?

The biggest lesson came from my manager. At the beginning of my internship he said that I should “think about why I received a task. Complete the task. Then, ask myself if there is a better way to do it.” Over the 12 weeks of the internship, I wanted to come away knowing that I added value to the North America Ads Finance team. This advice was imperative to ensuring I did just that.

How will your time at eBay support you in your finance career?

The eBay experience will be invaluable for my career. Over the past 12 weeks, I’ve come to learn that finance is a support function for the other business teams in an organization. I’ve been able to see in real-time how the finance team functions and complements other teams. I had the opportunity to help with daily and weekly tasks that further reinforced my understanding of the significant role finance plays in an organization.

In addition to that, the top highlight of my internship was speaking with the leaders within eBay in intimate settings. eBay has a very open policy when it comes to engaging in conversation with leaders in various departments. I found listening to their various career paths insightful for young professionals about to embark on their own professional journeys.

What does eBay mean to you?

To me, eBay means providing economic opportunity for all. I learned that eBay has employees who really believe in this mission. They’re excited to come to work because they know they’re helping people, entrepreneurs and small businesses really make an impact in their communities and target markets.