Interns will give you fresh perspectives and alternate thinking to your organization. Those that have studied abroad are by nature more global in their viewpoint. Those who have work experience abroad have not only that global viewpoint, however they are: more risk adverse; more entrepreneurial; and will impact your company in a different way. Many successful businesses give their interns the ability to grow and see cultural changes that are very significant. It may seem unbelievable, however 20 of our most successful leaders like Bill Gates, Elon Musk and other started out as interns.
Here are three ways to increase your company's presence, power and market potential.
1. Gaining a Global Perspective From The Heart
Be selective: study abroad programs around the world are expanding in scope to include experiential learning. Encouraging students to take their education and experience to the next level: to expand their global perspective. The goal of this work experience is to broaden the student's views and understanding of the world by experiencing international project experience first hand.
2. Understanding The Power of Diversity and Risks of Ethnocentrism
Leaders in a global marketplace understand the power of diversity and have an acceptance of the cultures of others. A diverse perspective of an intern can breakdown "Ethnocentric-tendencies". According to William Graham Sumner, when we are being "ethnocentric" we are not only looking at other cultures from our own lens, but we are convinced that our culture or our way is the "right one." The problem is that being "ethnocentric" leads to the assumptions that other cultures are completely wrong. Not different, wrong.
Working with international teams or global high level executives creates experiential learning through real life experiences. According to Kolb, active experimentation, and reflective observation, breaks down the natural human tendency for our ethnocentric nature to flourish
Cultural acceptance amplifies your company, and this increased awareness can have a direct impact on ourselves, our markets and our revenues.
3. Differentiating Experience - The Difference and Power
How do traditional, and experiential programs differ?
Traditional study abroad programs involve spending a semester, or year, abroad where the learning is tailored to the traditional, classroom style. These programs foster shared experiences with students from many nationalities. Sharing different foods, stories and drinks, tackling business concepts from different perspectives and learning from each other.
But what happens when instead of pairing students up with other students, you connect them directly with international executives and projects; where there is not time to judge, but to tackle real-life challenges every day. Challenges beyond their expectations and comfort zone? This is a very different, powerful and experiential learning experience.
Internships with international experiential learning are a powerful way to impact your company as well as a way to give back to the next generation of entrepreneurs.
Maximize the impact of these interns on your business culture with their expanded cultural awareness and acceptance. These individuals can have a direct impact on ourselves, our markets and our revenues.