You should make an intern an integral member of your team for their sake as well as yours. Having interns work as a member of your team will give them the most out of the time with you. You are helping the intern in the assessment of his or her interest in working for your company or in your industry.
Additionally, you may find that interns add a new perspective to work-life practices, projects, and ideas! Create a work plan and job description to spell out the intern’s responsibilities and goals before she gets a chance to start. Before she steps foot in the door, you should have a clear idea of what her job will involve.
Here are 8 tips for getting the most out of your internship at the office.
Organize your strategies
Make sure your intern gets off on the right foot by preparing for their arrival with a detailed job description, gathering a few key reads about the company, and drafting a loose schedule about the pattern of meetings, events, and other initial introductions. In case employees cannot immediately access the company system, have a few of the company’s industry publications or products in hard copy.
Check-in on a regular basis
Keeping your intern informed about upcoming projects and making sure that she has clear direction on existing projects should be your daily plan. Plan to sit down with her once a week for a more formal meeting. You might feel this adds to your time constraints, but that’s important to keep your intern engaged with her goals and keep her on track.
Make sure you remind your colleagues of the details of your intern’s term, including his or her background and resume. You can even send an email to remind them of the intern’s term. When the schedules permit, you can ask for an intern check-in meet with the corporate leadership to discuss goals and expectations. This first meeting will help set a tone for the internship, ensuring the intern feels appreciated and a part of the company.
Assign meaningful tasks
It’s part of being an intern to make copies and update databases, but your intern will grow and learn very little if that is all she does. Try to find valuable projects that your intern could do, even if it’s only one small part of the bigger picture.
Ask her what she would like to learn more about and give the tasks that correspond to her career goals and strengths, or ask her what she is interested in. This will not only help you when it comes to your job, but it will also afford you some insight into her interests.
Leaders don’t do everything themselves: they empower others and enable them to reach their full potential.
Become a mentor
Above all else, strive to show your intern that you are someone who can teach them. Answer their questions and teach them what you wished someone would have told you at that time.
Take a moment to consider the aspects of the workplace or job which you took for granted earlier, such as going to a quarterly meeting or attending a client presentation. These could be excellent teaching opportunities for your intern.
Making sure your interns have great experiences is critical to their careers. But remember that it’s also crucial to your career! Providing both formal and informal growth job opportunities is part of helping people learn and part of being a great boss. In addition to building your resume, working with interns will give you a chance to learn about the type of manager you want to become.
Make it fun
When starting with a new job, it may seem like your day at school: Who do I sit with? When you arrange lunch with colleagues and your intern at the beginning, you’ll alleviate some of the stress. A relaxed environment often facilitates discussions about personal goals and objectives when you schedule an activity outside the office or a team happy hour.
Start with the basics
Being fairly structured in your early time together can provide a helpful framework when everything feels unfamiliar when you are setting up your intern’s workload. This might be your intern’s first time working in an office or in a specific industry.
Your company may have new technology, culture, and objectives, so make sure you start with the basics. Be detailed in your instructions and ask lots of questions about the intern’s previous experience.
Never assume anything prior to learning it
If this is your intern’s first experience working, keep in mind that some of the things you think you understand (mail merging, tracking changes) may not make sense to her. You can always ask questions after you’ve talked through a project, and let her know she can come back to you with more questions after the fact.
If your intern does come back with questions, be patient with her answers! You should mean what you say. Apply for a latest jobs with jobsdive.co.