Fun With Interns

Reasonably sure this is what I looked like Friday morning.

Friday morning, post Keefer last week found me fuzzy of head and squinting of eyes. I should chalk up that state of affairs to two sources: Dionysus and his brethren, seeking to take maiden fair (such as myself) and intoxicate them with the ecstasy and joy of music, dance and wine and the Keefer Bar staff who just know how to lay out a killer cocktail.

And a few shots (and I’m not talking from a gun, either).

So it was in a state of, shall we say, fragility that I made my way to the Monster Ranch Friday morning, in glaring sunlight, in the brisk air. Upon arriving I was having difficulty locating the communal aspirin, only to find it cleverly hidden on the shop floor, away from where I might find it readily accessable. However, two GIANT containers of water, and a handful of painkillers later I found my smile was genuine again and I was ready, if shakily, able to meet the day’s challenges. Like unpredicted interns.

With a knock at my door, two nice young ladies introduced themselves as my new shop’s interns, and while I got them started on some paperwork, I scrabbled for my phone, furiously trying to find anything that mentioned interns due to arrive. I called their school and asked, ‘I’ve two interns here… what do I do with them?” I practically heard the shrug on the other end of the line. “Whatever you want.” This is a good a place as any to point out a few things with regards to etiquette about interns, their role in your life, yours in theirs and above all, how to have fun with them… within reason.

I’m a firm believer in that the intern relationship goes both ways: if your good to these fresh-faced newbies, they’ll put their best out for you. They aren’t getting paid other than in practical experience… while giving them menial jobs to do can be useful (and save you having to think of stuff for them to do), it’s important to also give them something interesting/engaging to do when you can. Throwing them the odd task that will result in a interesting anecdote later in their career or even *gasp* useful won’t go unnoticed. Today’s wide-eyed intern may well be tomorrow’s coworker, so it’s worth it to be kind, welcoming and patient with the newcomers.

I mean, I COULD ask them to go get me a smoothie and pick up my lunch (thereby ensuring a special place in hell for myself) OR I could direct them to clean a mammoth, tentacles, and bag and tag the fake body parts. If something interesting comes up for them to do, or observe good technique (I like the idea of enforcing good habits early on) then I’m happy to endorse this. As a lot of the people on our team are former interns it’s good to remember that a lot of talent comes, and sometimes if your a little hungover when it arrives, it might take YOU some digging to get to.

But that all said, the chance to exercise a positive experience for two newcomers to the field the the greatest intoxicating power – the chance to offer someone a modicum of education mixed in with some good times, laughs and to have them come away richer for the experience… now that’s a power I’d like to wield.


Little Miss Risk




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One Response to Fun With Interns

  1. Jesus says:

    We keep at least 8 interns in heavy rotation at my job. Some of them are smart, some not so much. Obviously the smart ones will get the more valuable work while the others will be stuck with some more menial labor. All at one point do errands. I rather send them for a sandwich or latte than have them twiddling on their phone or checking facebook on the computer, that’s MY JOB! ;-)

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