Qualities to Look for in an Intern

Effective-Web-DesignInternships are a win-win for most businesses. In return for offering a young person valuable experience in the workplace, you have an extra body in the office, at your beck and call, who will work for free for a few weeks. The intern gains useful insights into a job they are interested in and you can share your wisdom. If it all goes well, you may even decide to offer the intern a permanent position and it could be the beginning of a happy relationship for both of you.

Unfortunately, internships don’t always go to plan. If you take on the wrong person they might not fit into your company culture, or they could be completely unsuitable for the position. Internship success is predicated on you hiring the right intern, so here are some of the essential qualities you need to look out for when going through the hiring process.

Open and Friendly

You need your intern to be happy, friendly and willing to talk to your other employees and clients. Happy, easy-going types are a lot easier to work with. They tend to fit in better with existing employees and are more likely to thrive. Some interns are a bit shy to begin with, but soon open up. Look for someone who has the right attitude and they will soon become an asset to your company.


It is pointless taking on an intern who does nothing but gaze at their social media accounts or snooze in a corner. Interns are only there for a short time, so to gain the most out of the experience, they need to have a strong work ethic. Look for an intern who has previous work experience, as they are more likely to be hard working. If they seem full of enthusiasm and ask plenty of questions at the interview, this is a good sign.

Relevant Skills

Depending on your business, it will be helpful to search for an intern who has relevant skills. These could include experience of office suites, working in a customer-facing environment, or even having a full drivers licence. If being able to drive is a skill your employees need, and the intern is otherwise perfect for the role, suggest they start the ‘learning to drive’ process by taking some practice theory tests at toptests.co.uk. That way they are on track to becoming a potential future employee.


It goes without saying that interns need to be trustworthy. The last thing you need is an intern who steals from the petty cash or helps themselves to the contents of the stationery cupboard.


Look for interns who are mature, as they are more likely to cope better with workplace stress. This doesn’t mean you should avoid hiring younger interns, but remember that some young people are more mature than others.

Successful interns need to be well-rounded, hardworking and friendly types. It also helps if they are curious, quick to learn, and willing to go the extra mile to learn the skills they need to progress in their future career.

Published by Kidal Delonix (1193 Posts)

Kidal Delonix is a contributor to Mr. Hoffman's blog. The views and opinions are entirely his/her own and may not reflect Mr Hoffman's views.

Learn more

Leave a Reply