Managing people can be very difficult. People come into the workplace with the experiences of their pasts – both good and bad and both new and old. Resumes and interviews are great screening tools, but you truly never know your employees until they become your employees. As the saying goes “hard skills may get you the job, but soft skills will help you keep the job”.
There are a few personnel issues that plague companies universally. The following six areas impact growth and profitably and can all be addressed successfully with a strong internship program.
- Staff Turnover – staff turnover can lead to a loss of institutional knowledge, is extremely costly, and can negatively impact staff morale
- Unfilled Vacancies – unfilled positions decrease productivity as employees take on extra work or work is left undone because no one can accept the added responsibility
- Culture Mismatch – people skills are important and although an employee may seem great on the interview, only time will tell if they fit into your company culture
- Retiring – many companies have an aging workforce and are facing an employee exodus due to retirement
- Disengagement – tardiness, absenteeism, incomplete work, or poorly completed work are all signs that an employee is no longer engaged in the mission and work of a company
- Advancement – many employees leave a company because they do not see a clear path to career advancement
An internship program is more than just bringing in an intern so you have an extra pair of hands to do work at a low cost. An internship program encompasses the recruitment, screening, hiring, onboarding, and development systems and processes of novice professionals in a company.
- Staff Turnover – most interns are seeking full-time employment and would be ecstatic about being hired at the company that provided a great internship experience. Retraining is inexpensive and often unnecessary because the intern already knows the company/
- Unfilled Vacancies – an internship program allows companies to have an ongoing pool of qualified candidates
- Culture Mismatch – once the internship (trial) period has ended, managers know which interns are a good match for their company culture and can offer permanent employment accordingly
- Retiring – before seasoned employees exit the company they can be paired with interns to train the next generation of employees and maintain and grow institutional knowledge
- Disengagement – mentoring and training an intern can reignite an employee’s enthusiasm for their work
- Advancement – once a new internship program has begun, managing interns can become a stretch assignment to help an employee develop a new skill set or gain management experience
Related: JOIN Marvelous Managers, Successful Supervisors Facebook group to give and share wisdom and strategies.
If you have questions about how to develop or manage a successful internship program, please contact me to REGISTER for your FREE INTERNSHIP ASSESSMENT.
Nicki Sanders, MSW, is a travel and cupcake lover with a passion for self-discovery and career development. She has a strong background in developing and managing interns and successful internship programs. She is an accomplished manager, professor, coach, trainer, and group facilitator who has packaged her Master of Social Work degree and 20 years of diverse work experience into Packaged For Success, a full service training and professional development company.
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