Summer is here. Which means that if you’re lucky enough, you’ll get to the agency one day to find out a bunch of kids sitting everywhere (some will even claim your favorite spot as theirs).
You watch them, you sniff them, you close your eyes a little to look more dramatic and suspicious. Then you walk to your seat and start working on your day to day. You know someone from HR, your boss or the creative manager will come to introduce them or at some point you’ll receive an email telling everybody that the interns are here.
Over the next few days, you notice that this new breed of graduates or soon-to-be graduates are looking at you more scared than a gazelle being chased by a cheetah. You decide to approach them, introduce yourself and be the friendly face of the company.
Deep in your mind you know that these millennials don’t know shit, but maybe, maybe one of them will teach you what’s hip in Pop Culture (do we still say hip?). You decide to invite them for lunch, talk to them, be part of their group (you might even go as far as date one of them if there’s a cute girl or a cute boy in the mix).
And that’s the breaking point.
*Dramatic music begins to play.
This is the moment where you can shape that intern into your heavyweight champion or make him hate coffee runs for the rest of their life. You’re now a mentor.
But sadly, some people are not born to be mentors. Some have an ego that’s bigger than the agency and won’t accept new blood challenging or bringing new and innovative ideas. So they go for the easy route of not including them into the real work and just send them for coffee runs.
They don’t remember that once they were interns. That once they tried to break into the business (any business). They forgot how hard it is to learn if there isn’t someone to teach you or at least tell you when you did something wrong.
I know because I was an intern once. And I had awesome bosses and mentors that threw me into challenging projects. Some of them changed the company I worked for. Others forgot about me and made me endure months of just sitting at my desk watching the clock tick; no projects, no trust, no benefit for them or the company.
So please, please… Don’t be the asshole boss and give your interns a chance. Some of them will rock!
That leaves me with just one more question.
Where’s my fucking intern?