— July 25, 2018
At some point, a growing business needs to hire help. Some kind of help, any kind of help! Interns are a great way to offload some of the smaller tasks in your business, can be cost-effective, and are a great chance for young people to get a behind the scenes look and work experience they might need.
Hiring someone, even a part-time intern, is never easy. You need to find someone who believes in your business, will actually get the work done on time, and will allow you the free mental and physical space to focus on the bigger picture.
I wouldn’t hire n intern to do all my marketing, but I can hire one to schedule my marketing posts. Interns are not for the heavy lifting of your business; rather they are there to pick up the slack while you do the heavy lifting.
How To Hire An Intern
Hiring an intern starts with your needs. What do you need an intern for? Write out your three biggest pain points when it comes to standard ‘busywork’ types of work. For example, maybe scheduling posts on social media takes up an hour of your time that’d you rather have back.
Come up with a short list of needs you want filled, and then flesh that out into an internship posting.
Once you know what you need an intern for, you need to list the posting somewhere that interns will read it. Colleges are a great starting point for this; you can list your internship on their jobs/internship pages. Often these are found through the university’s office of professional development.
Another good idea is to reach out to local organizations that work with students or people who want part-time work. Local libraries often have job boards you can post on as well.
How To Interview An Intern
Once you have a few applicants, you should interview them, preferably in person. If this is someone you’re going to give any kind of responsibility to in your business, you need to get an in-person read on them.
Before you sit down with them, prepare questions about their work history, their skills, and why they want to work for you. Remember why you’re hiring them and form your questions from that. For example, if you need help with social media, ask them about how they would promote your most recent event on social platforms. If you need help labeling product as if they consider themselves good at organizing things.
An interview should be at least 30 minutes, so you both have enough time to ask each other questions and get somewhat comfortable in each other’s presence. This is also the time to bring up compensation. Many companies don’t pay interns, but I think that’s a mistake. Someone who is bringing home a paycheck, even a small one, is going to be much more invested in your business than someone you’re not paying. When you start thinking about wanting to hire an intern, make sure you have something to pay them with.
Once you’ve gone through the interview, you have to make a decision. Who is the best fit for your business? Who will help you the most? At the end of the day, remember that this is your business. You need to hire an intern that will help you grow your business.