Interns: What to do With Them?

Interns: What to do With Them?

About 4 weeks ago you had a new team member added to your staff.

You could have sworn they were in high school, but this intern is a junior in college and hoping to make some connections before “all gets real” next year.

As these 4 weeks have passed, it’s been nice to have the extra help but you are noticing that you intern is seeming… well – bored?

You can tell they had hopes of what their internship would be and because May (and June) were so crazy this year, you know you could have planned a little better for their arrival.

So, now what?

Here are some tips on how to re-engage with your intern:

1. Start the relationship over – take them to lunch!

  • Get to know them! Where do they want their career to start? What is their dream job? If they could work for any company/ industry, what would it be?

2. Take the time to set the context for upcoming projects

  • Sometimes tasks given to interns seem like the “projects that no one wants”. Make it feel special (in an authentic way!)
  • Take some time to share about why those projects REALLY matter or choose a project that would benefit your team and speak to your interns interests!

3. Have some new resources available

  • You’ve got two goals here: You want your intern to be successful with the new project you’ve given and you want to show thoughtfulness (that you’ve prepared for giving this new project)

4. Offer and ask for feedback – and not too late, either!

  • Give your intern actionable feedback with real examples – it help them to be successful in the future! Make sure to give some positive feedback too
  • Ask them for feedback on what you’ve done well and what else they would have appreciated

Try out these tips and let us know your best strategies for engaging with interns!

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Take a Break!

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We’ve been focusing the past few weeks on how to be most effective while working from home – from getting organized while working from home to recognizing and staying at your productive peek.

But what if you’re too focused? Our team member, Jocelyn Dove, is here to help!

Screen Shot 2016-03-11 at 7.32.59 AMOne hurdle I have been striving to accomplish is taking breaks! What’s a break? When you are in an office environment you may not realize that you have several breaks…the “coffee break”, the “bathroom break,” the “random peer coming to your cube break”, the required “lunch break”, and then the “end of the day/work is over break”.  

I really didn’t realize how many “breaks” I was truly afforded when working in a traditional office environment until I started working from home! One morning I made breakfast and sat down with my cup of coffee to start the day and then BAM! It was 10:46 PM and my coffee cup was dry and I couldn’t recall the last time I went to the bathroom or had a glass of water. But now it’s too late to eat dinner because I should be going to bed soon, but realize “why not?” because I’m just going to wear yoga pants anyway…

Ever done that before? That was a big wake-up call that I had to get some structure around taking breaks. Here’s what I’ve done to help myself that might apply to you:

  1. Added a break to my work calendar with a reminder. I’ve even made it look like an official meeting on my calendar so people know they can’t steal my time!
  2. Made plans to leave the house – I’ve set up a lunch date with friends, planned to go to the grocery store, got my car serviced, haircut etc. SOMETHING that get’s you out of the house in a planful way
  3. Found a workspace outside of my home office to devote a couple of hours to a day. It doesn’t have to be fancy – a museum or coffee shop will work just fine!
  4. Get a pet (I haven’t done this, but I’ve heard this helps!). A pet needs love and maybe a walk at some point during the day – a perfect trigger to take a break

Thanks, Jocelyn! Can anyone else relate to not prioritizing yourself throughout the day? What tips do you have on making sure to take breaks?

OOO- Returning On Monday

OOO- Returning On Monday

… In my absence please connect with Devin Jones for any urgent matters, otherwise I will connect with you once I return…

Your stomach sinks. You NEED to connect with Sam to complete your project for your boss and now she’s on vacation for a week?!

Remember when vacations use to be fun? It seems like at some stage in your life vacations made an abrupt shift – now all you think about is when someone is out of the office how much it throws off your week and creates more work for you.

Somewhere along the way, we started (secretly or not-so-secretly) regretting when others take time off of work. And, making sure that business goals are still met when you have Mary out this week, Simone getting married the week after, and Matt who’s wife is pregnant and may have the baby at any time now, can be a challenge.

How do you keep your team encouraged (and unified) when it seems like they won’t all be together for the next two months?

Sport It Up: Set up a Frisbee game/ happy hour one day after work for everyone who is around. Or, if your team doesn’t like to play sports, set up a time to go see a local baseball game.

Take It Outside: I know, this one seems a little cliché but for a couple of your meetings, schedule it during lunch and take your team outside. It is amazing what a little extra sunlight can do to your mood!

Celebrate the Returns: There is nothing more disheartening (well, that’s a little dramatic) than coming back to work and wishing you had one more day of vacation. So, as people are coming back to the office, send out a “welcome back” email or 20-minute coffee break to celebrate their return!

Let us know how these work for you or what you do to keep your team unified in the summer!