We recently shared a ‘nugget’ on our utube channel @idmea [] related to internships and have a handbook that can be tweaked for both interns and the supervisor subject to the company and its business activities and model.

Knowing who you are and having a good idea of your preferred and least preferred behaviours coupled with your EI, SI, CI can make all the difference when you enter an internship let alone whether it is ‘dumb or smart’ and can have lasting benefits if it is tuned to self awareness and developing resilience. Areas that are key to what we do at ID MEA.

The article below is thought provoking and has some very valid observations and pivot points for the intern and supervior.

Dumb Internship vs Smart Internship

March 20, 2024|Business, Career, College, Graduates, Internship, Students, Talents Acquisition

By The Editorial Team, The Talents Insider

The difference between “Dumb Internship” and “Smart Intership”

Most degrees require an internship to graduate; some may only recommend internship experience. 

An internship increases college students marketability to employers. On average, only 30 percent of graduating seniors have job offers before graduation; however, after students complete an internship, that figure rises to 58 percent. 

However, in recent years, conventional internships are becoming increasingly challenging for interns to find the right workplace for their internship that would lead to the right-employment and the start of a successful-career.

Some common challenges faced by interns include a lack of defined objectives, inadequate guidance or mentorship, poorly defined tasks, strict deadlines, limited opportunities for growth and skill acquisition, a lack of networking opportunities, exclusion from meetings, and insufficient training. 

Click Here for our upcoming smart internships labs
Click Here for our upcoming smart internships labs

For the purpose of this post, we have identified two types of internships:

  • “The Dumb internship”, the conventional and most popular type, is a micro-level job-based-business-specific training provided to a college student to hopefully do the next things he/she learned in college the way they are done at the business workplace. Unfortunately, whether the internship training was good or bad, interns cannot use whatever they learned at any other workplace or any other industry, making them unemployable anywhere else.
  • “The Smart internship”, on the other hand, is a macro-level-project-based-industry-specific training provided to a college student to experientially learn how to discover the right thing to do next and create social-business opportunities for any business within an industry sector and then learn how to contextually adapt it to any business chosen by the intern within the industry. Fortunately, interns can use whatever they have learned at any other workplace within the industry sector, making them employable at any business within the same industry sector. Moreover, interns can use the base knowledge they have learned to create social-business opportunities accross sectors, making them employable anywhere.

But it all starts with self-awareness!

Interns journey should start with Self-Awareness, and here is why.

A published Harvard Business Review research found that self-awareness seems to have become the latest management buzzword – and for good reason. Research suggests that when we see ourselves clearly, we are more confident and more creative. We make sounder decisions, build stronger relationships, and communicate more effectively. We’re less likely to lie, cheat, and steal. We are better workers who get more promotions. And we’re more-effective leaders with more-satisfied employees and more-profitable companies. 

Click Here for our upcoming Internships Booster Labs
Click Here for our upcoming Internships Booster Labs

The research revealed many surprising roadblocks, myths, and truths about what self-awareness is and what it takes to improve it. It was found that even though most people believe they are self-aware, self-awareness is a truly rare quality: Research estimated that only 10%–15% of the people studied actually fit the criteria. 

Across the studies researchers examined, two broad categories of self-awareness kept emerging:

  1. The first category, internal self-awareness, represents how clearly we see our own values, passions, aspirations, fit with our environment, reactions (including thoughts, feelings, behaviors, strengths, and weaknesses), and impact on others. Researchers have found that internal self-awareness is associated with higher job and relationship satisfaction, personal and social control, and happiness; it is negatively related to anxiety, stress, and depression.
  2. The second category, external self-awareness, means understanding how other people view us, in terms of those same factors listed above. The research shows that people who know how others see them are more skilled at showing empathy and taking others’ perspectives. For leaders who see themselves as their employees do, their employees tend to have a better relationship with them, feel more satisfied with them, and see them as more effective in general.

When it comes to internal and external self-awareness, it’s tempting to value one over the other. But leaders must actively work on both seeing themselves clearly and getting feedback to understand how others see them. Once same is applied to college students/graduates interneships training, we will be able to graduate talented leaders.  

Where can you start building self-aware future leaders?

Click Here for our upcoming smart internships labs
Click Here for our upcoming smart internships labs

While most popular conventional internships focus on the Dumb Internships model, Talents of Endearment focus on the Smart Internships model, Talents of Endearment Career Accelerator (TECA), to help each intern to objectively evaluate themselves, analyze each decision they make, manage their emotions, align their behavior with their values/purpose, and understand correctly how others should perceive them in the future. This will gives them the power to influence outcomes; helps them become better decision-makers and gives them more self-confidence with the choices and the decisions they make for the rest of their lives. Through TECA, we turn normal interns to exceptional leaders – we enable interns to filter out their own career ambition to help them become self-aware (understand who they are, what they want, how they feel, and why they do the things that they do), and then match them to an industry they choose, and a business they would each like to be aligned with. 

TECA enables college students to focus on building both internal and external self-awareness, seek honest feedback from friendly critics, and ask what instead of why to see themselves more clearly – and reap the many rewards that increases their self-knowledge delivers. And no matter how much progress interns make, there’s always more to learn by enabling them to stay curious with “what” is next. That’s one of the things that makes the journey to self-awareness so exciting for interns with TECA

TECA provides comprehensive real-time, real-life, virtually simulated workplacement training to college students and graduates, coached and mentored by field experts, to become self aware and discover the right thing to do next and build the right thing for the future of work to become employable anywhere in the world, with lifetime career support to get help when needed. 

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