Linking to Work, Wife,Mom...Life! for Working Mommy Wednesday. For this week the discussion is: Writer's choice - I choose interns
Interns can be both a blessing and a hassle. A good intern will bring fresh ideas and work independently, a bad intern will just sit around and look for excuses to leave early.
I've been working with interns for 10 years and they all come from the school I graduated from so I can quickly spot their strengths and weaknesses. Students must take an internship as a class, it's a requirement for graduation. I fill out paperwork every week on their performance and they are graded based on my comments.
Yesterday I had the pleasure of interviewing a GREAT intern and I can't wait for this person to come on board in January. Here are the qualities that make this person GREAT:
- Persistence in calling - she left two messages before I managed to get back to her. I will return an email faster than a phone call but the latter is more warm and friendly.
- Genuine excitement for the toy industry and not just babbling about how much fun it is to work with toys, serious focused excitement. She talked about her upcoming trip to New York and her intention to go trend shopping so we gave her several toy locations to scout out and asked her to take photos of any cool toys she might find. I'll be really impressed if she comes back with lots of photos.
- She talked highly about her teachers which is a sign of respect.
- A well crafted follow up email thanking me for the interview, conveying her excitement and even saying she had looked forward to our interview for some time. Very serious girl.
Two weeks later she left a tea and cookie basket with her internship paperwork inside. A bribe? She wanted me to still fill out her paperwork so she could pass the class! Of course I didn't fill it out.
I've become very selective with internships; it's as serious as applying for a full time job. If the internship goes well, it can lead to part time work for the student while they are in school. If that goes well it leads to a full time job after graduation which works out brilliantly for me because I've had a full year to train them and they come on board well past the learning curve of a new hire.