We offer several types of internships in our business. At the inception of our program, I started the program out of necessity. I needed additional staff but couldn't afford it. So, I thought it would be beneficial if I were to offer an internship program. It is easy to see why I would want to offer an internship program, free labor right?
Internships can be career or even life-altering. Offering internships helped my business take off to a new level and has been a valuable part of my business from the onset. I continually make improvements to our program and have found them to be one of the biggest blessings in my business.
It is a running thread through my company that I value people. I value our clients, our vendors, and our team. Our team includes interns. With this in mind. I did not want our interns to feel like they were free labor but wanted them to feel like they were learning valuable information. Because of this, I developed an actual training program. It offers a wide area of learning, required hours, they have responsibilities, and are required to be at a certain amount of events. My view is they must learn more in value than the money I am saving from their efforts. They must feel that the efforts and time they put in are a fair exchange.
From my viewpoint, this program has been so successful that we only hire our staff out of this program. It provides an opportunity for us to test characters, see their abilities and develop skills, along with understanding their dedication. This has been invaluable to us. We found out the hard way that someone can put together a pretty resume that checks all the boxes, has a great 1st interview, and even shines brightly for the first few weeks. An internship is a little longer term and you have the opportunity to really get to know each other.
On average we take approximately 6-10 interns per year. Several will drop out after just 6 weeks. I often find it isn't what they expected and many think we will find out how amazing they are and just hire them out of the program. When they find out we didn't fall for their charm, they quit. What a blessing to find out their true lack of dedication in such a short time. I am over the moon to have them leave and not have hired and paid them to find out they are not really dedicated. We also have some who after about 6 months realize, it doesn't fit into their family or social needs. On the flip side, from our program, we have hired long-term committed staff who are still with us today.
Now, you don't have to offer a full-fledge program if it just doesn't work for you right now. There are people out there who would just love to help out on a wedding day and you may be able to find some of those types of people. We have inquiries all the time that contact us and want to help out just on a wedding day. Unfortunately, we don't have a space for that type of assistance.
I think it is important to note that if you are going to offer an internship, you don't want someone to feel like you are taking advantage of them. They need to understand the exchange so, you need to make sure it is clearly written. What are your expectations and what do they receive in return?
We are considering offering a worksheet for you to use to develop your own Internship program. If this interests you, please contact us to share your thoughts.
Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.
Don't worry, your information will not be shared.