How to run successful e-internships: a case for organizational learning
- Publisher: Emerald
diversity | virtual internship | HD28 Management. Industrial Management | mentoring | e-internship | 658 General management | organizational learning
© 2016 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to outline unique learning experience that virtual/e-internships can offer small and medium-sized enterprises and start-up organizations. Design/methodology/approach – The authors interviewed 18 experts on e-internships (interns and managers of internships) across several countries to learn more about the learning experiences for both organizations and interns. The information from these interviews was also used to formulate a number of recommendations. Findings – The interviews outlined the various development opportunities that e-internships may produce for interns, managers and staff within these organizations. One important benefit pertains to the skill development of both interns and managers. The interns get unique working experiences that also benefit the organizations in terms of their creativity, input and feedback. In return, managers get a unique learning experience that helps them expand their project management skills, interpersonal skills and mentoring. Practical implications – The authors outline a number of recommendations that consider skill development, the benefit of diversity in numerous forms as well as mutual benefits for enterprises and start-ups. Originality/value – The discussion of the various benefits and conditions under which virtual internships will succeed in organizations provides practitioners an insight into the organizational opportunities available to them given the right investment into e-interns and internship schemes.