Tag Archives: human resources


Intern Spotlight: Michael Koh

Michael Koh

Interviewee Name: Michael Koh

Intern Position Title: Associate/Writer

Company: Office Lease Center

Company URL: OfficeLeaseCenter.com

Location: New York City, NY

Tell us the steps you took to land an internship or entry-level position?

I first moved down to NYC from Buffalo after getting my Bachelor’s and spending an extra year copyediting and proofing a manuscript for an author. I put myself out there in NYC and actively looked for internships—I got in touch with Marc at CreativeInterns.com, who was extremely helpful and willing to connect us recent graduates with people looking to find internships or entry-level positions.

How did you find CreativeInterns.com?

I Googled internships in New York City and I’m glad I did!

Coffee or tea?

I love tea, I love coffee (black, please), but right now, I’m hooked on this energy drink called Runa. Check it out; the advertising agency I intern at has their fridge stocked with it.

What made your internship experience unique?

I get to attend some really cool technology events and meet fantastic people. Also, free beer and pizza (sometimes).

What skills did you learn or improve while at your internship?

Networking skills, definitely. You need to be comfortable with yourself to be approached and approach other people at events. I also learned to have a pitch when introducing yourself.

Can you describe what a normal day is for an intern at your company?

I go to events around six or so, but at the events, I’m usually introducing myself, trying to promote the company, and then when the event actually starts, I take notes for the article I write to recap the event.

Give us one word to describe your workplace environment?


What advice would you give to someone just starting to look for an internship or entry-level job?

Chin up, back straight and always smile. Wear something nice, too. No hoodies or stuff like that unless it’s a laid-back culture at the office.

What do you do to fill the inspiration gas tank?

Laughing and drinking a lot of caffeine.

What’s next for you?

Hopefully a full-time job in the advertising world!



Working With Other Interns


A big part of internships is learning how to work on a team, if not with other interns than with your superiors. If you are working with other interns, it can be hard to find the line between “coworker” and “friend.” Especially because other interns will probably be in your age range, it’s easy to forget that you are in a professional work environment. There are two big pieces of advice that I have to offer for a successful coworking experience:

Stay out of the gossip

You wouldn’t believe how much gossip I hear between interns throughout the day, whether it be directly said to me or over the wall of a cubicle. Gossip can be the result of the line between coworker and friend is blurred, for example after a night out together.

My best advice is to just stay out of it. Don’t start it and don’t spread it. Just listen if you have to and forget it ever happened. It’s unprofessional and can get in the way of teamwork in the future if the other person finds out you’ve been talking about them. Trust is lost, respect is lost, and an overall team tension can build.

Don’t act like it’s a competition

Sure, some healthy competition can be a great motivator in the workplace, but don’t let it get to the point where you’re thinking “I must beat him/her!” You guys are all in the same boat: youngsters trying to mold your skills and build a career.

Instead of trying to beat someone out, look at it as a growing experience together. Other interns could have a lot of valuable insight or job search tips that could help you out in the future. If you’re friendly and helpful, they’ll return the favor if you ever ask for it. It never hurts to have an extra connection or two.

Written by Diane Ly


How to Rise Into Fame & Stardom

creative interns

Whether you dream of on-stage spotlights or scoring victoriously on the basketball court, breaking into stardom is no simple task. If rising from mediocrity to fame and success were easy, then who would make up the population of average people? Along with innate talent, acquired skills and boundless determination, future stars can achieve their wildest dreams.

Jack of All Trades

Expand upon your single-faceted skills. Whether you’re in school for an acting degree or want to try theater, step outside your comfort zone and throw yourself into the trenches of artistry and performance. Test out singing, dancing, your live energy on stage and onscreen presence. A multi-talented individual can fulfill a wide range of mesmerizing character portrayals, which helps in scoring that one big break.

Tom Hanks perfectly embodies the ideal actor who has exceptionally diverse acting capacities. In 2013, Hanks will appear on the Broadway musical “Lucky Guy,” thus demonstrating that Hanks isn’t restricted to any role or genre.

You are Your Character

The ability to effortlessly and veritably portray a character with depth grows and improves your acting repertoire. Magnetically convincing audiences and directors takes work, and successful actors actually live as their characters. Place yourself in the character’s world. Feel their fear, pain and euphoria. Uncover the true nature of any character and how he or she impacts the storyline. As her role in “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” Rooney Mara earned an Oscar nomination because of her dynamic “ability to convey a range of often competing emotions,” describes InterviewMagazine.com.

Confidence is Essential

To obtain star power and shine, an individual must be comfortable and self-assured. For example, young athletes who dream of going pro need to maintain a high level of confidence, especially during disappointments, losses and moments of self-doubt. Incredibly talented athletes who just need a little growth and experience also have to learn how to drop their egos while on the field or court. Accept criticism, let go of defensiveness and practice what you’re taught. Follow in tennis extraordinaire Roger Federer’s footsteps as he rose to become a world-class, victorious pro athlete despite a year of rival losses and a No. 2 ranking.

“I’m not over-confident, just very confident. I know my game’s in place now. Once I win a certain number of matches, I know what I can do, what I can’t do…” (Roger Federer).

Never Give Up

The pursuit of stardom, fame and ubiquitous recognition for your talent and passions shouldn’t be without letdowns and disappointments. The moment you experience self-doubt and the urge to give up, remember that more often than not, Grammy-award winning singers and bands who perform in front of a sold-out crowd had to overcome struggles too. Nate Ruess and his indie pop band, Fun., finally earned their deserved recognition by winning the 2013 Grammy’s Song of the Year. Lead vocalist Ruess is a self-taught singer from Glendale, Arizona who first acquired his taste of fame with his widespread, yet under-acknowledged band The Format. After The Format split, Ruess formed Fun. and has since broken into the music scene with star-studded prowess.

Written by Helen Macgregor: A successful designer of theater and movie costumes, Helen’s life is all about fashion and how it can be used to tell a story of one’s life.


Looking to Start an Internship Program?

Want to start an internship program, but don’t know where to start? Treat your internship program just as you would any new program you start at your company and research is key to a great start.

What type of internship program is your company able to offer? You need to know if you have the resources to host interns year round, by semester, or summers only. Learn about students currently seeking intern opportunities with your company to get an idea of what your pool of talent will look like.

Where could your company use the help of an intern? Determine if you have the resources available to support an internship program. This will help you figure out how many interns you can bring into the company, where to place them, and if you can compensate them. Interns are useful in  areas like research, web design, and social media.

What is the budget? You will need to know if you can pay your interns, how much you can pay and if you will offer a stipend or other benefit. You should think about offering some compensation such as travel reimbursement or provide lunch to alleviate the financial constraints that interns experience. As an intern, these two things that were very helpful to me, especially with the transit fare hikes.

Is your plan clear? Create an outline of the responsibilities and learning objectives of the internship program. This should be a clear description of what you want your intern to accomplish.This also helps the intern to see what skills they will be gaining and what will be expected of them.

Does everyone know their roles? Your intern will need to be supervised and should know which team members to approach if they need assistance. This will help alleviate mistakes that can occur from interns asking the wrong person for help or not asking a question at all because they are unsure who can help. Also, you want to avoid making your staff appear incompetent and unhelpful. Get the whole team on board and aware of what is going on.

When will your interns be in office?. Make a set schedule of when your intern is expected to be in the office. Having a regular schedule makes your program more professional and gives your intern a sense of really going to work. Try to be flexible as most interns are students.

Look into any legal aspects to make sure you are in compliance with your state’s employment laws. According to Internships.com, “A host organization should consult with their company’s legal counsel before hiring interns.”

Starting an internship program at your company is simple and rewarding if properly done.

Image courtesy of: AGmakonts

Written by Monique Skinner





5 Tips For Managing Interns

Image courtesy of BCU

An internship is the perfect way to prepare students for future employment. As a manager you should strive to get the best out of your intern. This will help the intern to become a great employee. Here are 5 tips for managing interns:

Guide. Interns will not come into the workplace knowing the basics about how things are done so you will need to guide them. Make sure expectations and goals are clear and monitor how their work is being done so you can make corrections if necessary and offer them advice. The value of an internship for students is that it’s how they learn the basic functions about the job they want. This is their chance to experience what it will be like in the real work world.

Teach. Don’t treat your intern like they are just cheap labor. You should enjoy teaching and be willing to assist your intern with achieving their goals. If you create a positive learning experience for your intern they will repay you with positive brand awareness for your company. A great internship experience is like free advertising.

Plan. Have enough work for your intern to do. Your intern should be given tasks that are relevant to the job they want to do. But if there is downtime the intern might not know what to do next. Some will find stuff to do around the office, but not all interns will take the initiative. Plan ahead by having other projects the intern can work on. This could include things such as filing that has piled up or allow them to be creative and work on social media projects like creating a Facebook page for your company if you don’t have one.

Expect. You might not have the same expectations of your intern as you do for your regular staff, but you should have some expectations so that the time you put into hiring, training, and supervising them won’t be a waste. Even if your intern is unpaid they should still be accountable doing quality work.

Communicate. Have weekly meetings with your intern to keep the lines of communication open and create a mentoring relationship.Take the time to get to know your intern and discuss the work they are doing.These conversations will help you when it is time to do reviews and write letters of recommendation. If the intern is good maybe they’ll be your next full-time employee.

These are a few things you can do to make sure you are getting the best out of your intern. Keeping these points in mind will help with managing your intern and developing them into hire worthy employees.

Written by Monique Skinner


Want to Save Money? Employ an Intern.

Image courtesy of: 401(K) 2013

Save time and money by taking on an intern. Train a potential new hire for minimal costs. Sourcing interns saves you the time of adding someone to payroll only to discover they are not a fit for your company. This results in wasted money and time.

For example, “entry-level salaries in the field of Public Relations average in the low $30,000 range” according to PayScale.com.

This is the amount of money your company could save by taking on interns and training them to do the job. Even if you offered your interns a small stipend you would still save on employment costs. Stipends are great because you can offer the student some compensation without strain on your budget. Although most interns are willing to take on unpaid internships to gain experience, offering a stipend makes the deal a little sweeter.

An intern is an investment for the student and your company. The intern will gain valuable real world work experience and you will have the advantage of developing your company’s next super star. Intern development works for you and the intern. After spending 12 weeks with your interns you will have formed a relationship and know if this person is right for your company and the intern will have the opportunity to learn from a professional in their desired career field. Even if at the end of the internship program you are unable to offer employment, you will have been a part of helping a student’s professional growth.

Most interns who have had great experiences with an internship program tell their friends or classmates about it. Interns will likely know other students who are looking for an internship. The intern becomes a recruiter for your company via word of mouth advertising saving you money on recruiting costs.

“The average cost to recruit new hires  can range from $2,906 to $5,054” according to NACE’s Recruiting Benchmark Survey.

This is the amount of money your company could save by having an intern who has favorably completed a program at your company and is offered employment. Also, think of the time it takes to recruit, hire, and train a new employee. According to NACE the average time from interview to hire is 22.5 days. This is longer than the amount of time that it would take to bring in an intern.

So maybe you’ll get your next rock star employee or maybe you’ll just get to develop a student’s talents for their future, either way an internship program is an ideal way for your company to save money and get the job done.

Written by Monique Skinner


Employers Benefit By Hiring Interns

Motion graphics animation describing the benefits of an internship program for employers. Animated by Diane Bruzzese, music by Robert May and concept created by Marc Scoleri.