internship role

Internship role: 5 ways to develop it professionally

Although an internship role doesn’t always hold great prestige, for many people this experience is a great starting point for their future careers. 

As they say, you have to start somewhere. A good way to do this is through an internship role. This should provide the person with a learning experience at different levels, i.e., a good professional development plan that will lay the foundations for their future as an employee. Here we will analyze this issue in detail and explain what you should take into account to offer someone in an internship role the best experience. 

Professional development plan for an internship role

What is an internship role?

In a nutshell, interns are trainees or employees with a very junior degree who enter into an agreement of some kind with a company to work there for a period of time and therefore enhance their curriculum, especially at a very early stage of their professional career. 

The main objective of all internship roles in companies is to have a first contact with the real working world and to apply, even if only superficially, the knowledge they have acquired during their academic training. As for the company, its role is to combine training as well as provide the intern with their first executive responsibilities.

internship role

Is it important to take interns’ work seriously?

Unfortunately, many companies fail in the above-mentioned point. Some do so because they are disinterested or lazy. Others do so because they do not know how to offer their interns a professional development strategy that will be of real use to them in their future careers. 

However, it is imperative that companies and internship roles are able to get the most out of their partnership program, especially if the company wants to improve its ability to attract and retain talent, as well as improve its productivity.

If the company does not know how to do this, it is time to ask for specialized help, for example through emotional well-being programs for companies such as the one offered by ifeel. Thanks to this program, HR managers can receive personalized advice on how to develop a strategy for an internship role.

The starting point for a good development plan

The key to the company’s ability to offer the intern a good professional development plan is to match their current and potential skills with their interests, needs, and expectations, within the room for maneuver that they will be able to have within the position.

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Consider collaboration with trainees in companies 

In fact, it all starts with a proper presentation of the offer made to interns in companies and continues with a good selection interview. This meeting is aimed at getting to know the candidate in depth. This involves discovering the person behind the internship role and also the intern behind the person, exploring their skills, and correctly specifying the terms of the collaboration agreement: duration, remuneration, rights and obligations, behavioral rules, onboarding process, tasks, functions, supervision… 

Once the interview is over, it is time to establish the next phases of the process. First, there is a period of initial training and assignment of tasks, with a high level of supervision. Next, the tasks and responsibilities of the intern begin to expand progressively, and the level of supervision is somewhat eased to encourage autonomy. 

Finally, an exit interview is held for evaluation and closure. This final meeting will serve to jointly evaluate the experience, exchange feedback, and explore future avenues of collaboration. 

How to offer good professional development to interns in companies?

While there are many factors that can influence how satisfying or frustrating an internship role is, there are also a number of things the company should keep in mind to maximize the success of the collaboration for both parties. These are as follows: 

1.  Place a team member as a mentor to the intern, to initiate a development plan focusing on the points you identify together, whether or not they are related to the daily task.

2. Listen to the intern’s opinions and take them into account, even if they have been hired to do administrative work or very simple work, or work that no one wants to do.

3. To have periodic supervision meetings where work objectives are specified and evaluated.

4. Make the intern feel like part of the team, i.e., don’t sit the interns with the interns but integrate them with the rest of the team members. This also means taking them to meetings as listeners, letting them participate in company events, or giving them temporary access to work tools and platforms.

5. Lend a hand to the intern as they grow and build a career within the company or even outside of it. 

In other words, managers should not be afraid of losing their “favorite intern”, retaining them at all costs in the event of other opportunities arising. On the contrary, they should support them if they deserve it, referencing them well so that they can grow and add value to the company (or develop outside, as the case may be).

These are benefits that always come back, and the intern who receives this support will always be grateful. In conclusion, it is good to celebrate the usefulness that the intern can have wherever they are, especially if it is within the same company but in another team and even if it is in another company. If you are currently experiencing a similar situation within your team, remember that the success of the intern who has been in your care is also your success.

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Personalized advice for companies

Ifeel has developed an emotional well-being program for companies, designed by its team of leading psychologists to help companies boost productivity in a sustainable way by taking care of the team’s mental health. 

Thanks to this partnership, HR managers can receive personalized, data-driven advice on how to get the most out of an internship role, helping them implement a good development plan. You can try our program today and start benefiting from its resources.

In addition, ifeel’s emotional well-being program for companies offers employees a mental health care service structured at different levels depending on what they need at any given time. This means that they can access various mental health care tools with ifeel’s app. On a second level, they can receive emotional support through a chat with one of our platform’s licensed psychologists. If continuous help is needed over time, they only have to access the third level of the program: online psychological therapy with a psychologist specialized in cases like theirs. 

We hope you found this post on how to improve an internship role interesting. If you would like more information about our emotional well-being program for companies, get in touch and we will contact your team as soon as possible.

You may also be interested in this post about mental health at work.

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