Many of us in the wedding industry are owner operators, some might have the benefit of a part or even full time person, but for the most part {as my teacher father often said} ‘we are overworked and underpaid’ and could really do with an extra set of hands.

If that is you, have you considered taking on an intern?

Interns are something I have used in my business pretty much from the outset. Some have been better {and lasted longer} than others, but overall the experiences have be worthwhile, positive and beneficial to the business.

As you can possibly imagine, interns do basic and often menial tasks in exchange for the experience of working in an area they some day hope to have a burgeoning career in.  Mine, like most, work for free.

In the past I had full time office based interns who would be working with me from anything from a couple of days to 6 months. Now, with offices being virtual and my time not strictly 9-5, Monday – Friday they work remotely with occasional office/ meeting based time on an initial 6 month basis with a monthly minimum commitment of 20 hours. This allows them to study or work elsewhere and gives me the flexibility of those extra pair of hands when most needed.

To make things beneficial for them, at the beginning we establish their learning goals or projects/ tasks or areas they wish to gain more experience or knowledge in. Thus giving them and the internship direct goals and objectives in addition to the general tasks or duties they will perform.

In order to protect myself and my company my interns sign Internship Agreements and Non-Disclosure Contracts – a very important aspect for you to cover before they begin work with you.

So where do you get interns?

There are of course government and locally run intern programs, but often, due to the nature or our business and finances we don’t always qualify for these programs and so we must look elsewhere and find the candidates ourselves.

This in and of itself can be a challenge.

Knowing who, where and what to look for can be the first stumbling block, so its best to:

  • sit down and work out where you need help and why,
  • what you want the intern to be able to do,
  • how many hours a week or a month you will need
  • and what you are prepared to give them in return for their work.

Like you would for a traditional job draw up a job description  and package and how and where one should apply.

Next consider where you might look for an intern:

  • Through an intern program.
  • Local School or College
  • Local Job Center
  • Shop Notice Board
  • Through Social Media
  • Taking our a local newspaper or radio ad
  • Word of Mouth

The important things to remember when hiring is:

  • Be clear of what is expected and being offered.
  • Protect yourself with contracts and agreements
  • Check references
  • And ensure they are a good fit for you and your business!