A new intern has begun

A lot has happened here in the past few weeks. We’ve had many people out on vacation, a few days here and there to a week. We've participated in events and have both a new client and a major new project with an established client.  In the midst we also had a new intern start. While school is still in session, spring quarter to go, he is part time and then will be full time in the summer.

Classically interns spend the summer in a role, often the summer after their junior year, and if they do well are offered a full time job, ready and waiting for them after graduation.   We’ve not taken that classic approach.  

We’ve actually preferred to have interns start with fewer hours, while still in classes. As anyone who has had an intern in the past knows there is a lot for them to learn. At the beginning it’s easier for us to train a few hours a day than be faced with full days.   We’re able to ‘chunk’ the learning into manageable pieces and know he’s ready for the next step. By the time his schedule does allow for full time work he’ll be more independent and when summer is over we are hoping to see him continue with us part time.   

Last summer we hosted an intern for one of our clients. The majority of the intern’s work was with us, though they did participate in some events at the client site. We’re lucky, several good universities are nearby so interns can come in to the office and work part time with us during the school year. Having several recent college grads on staff also makes for a welcoming environment to someone still in school, many of us are not far removed from college days! We enjoy having a new team member and a fresh perspective, there will be more interns in our future.

Adding even more language expertise!

Language expertise is very important as we reach out to our clients’ customers. We find being able to speak and write in local language is extremely helpful when discussing advocacy opportunities.   Program activity is increasing in Asia and as a result we prioritized fluency in Asian languages for our most recent hire and are happy to say our newest hire is from China and also fluent in Korean.   She recently finished her MBA in the US and joined the team last week.   Her work experience in China and time living in Korea gives her a familiarity with both business vocabulary and etiquette, which is critical. As we hire for language expertise we have made it a priority to hire native speakers or individuals who have spent extensive time living, and working, locally.   For western countries as well, sensitivity to local practices enables us to build trust, understanding and confidence with those we come into contact with and is helping us forge very successful and longstanding business partnerships and relationships.

Commitment to Youth Opportunity

We just hired two recent college grads.  Not only that, we made the pledge, will you?  See smallbizsupportouryouth.com. More than four years have passed since the economy was at it's low point, and yet nearly six million young Americans are both out of school and out of work—a staggering number.

As small business owners, we are committed to addressing this challenge in the way we can best.  Today, we joined the pledge to create meaningful opportunities for our nation’s youth.

Over the next two to three years, Referential, Inc. commits to take one or more of these actions:

1.    Increase the number of opportunity youth hires

2.    Expand full or part-time intern or apprenticeship placements for opportunity youth

3.    Adopt or expand a high-quality mentoring program for local opportunity youth.

4.    Partner with nonprofit training providers to create a new employee mentoring, job-shadowing and recruiting program.

5.    Partner with a local nonprofit or education system to identify opportunity youth to fill entry-level positions

6.    Work with our suppliers to assess opportunities to hire, train or mentor opportunity youth.

We hope your company also pledges to create meaningful opportunities for our youth.