Modern Etiquette: Internships mean business

Mon Nov 21, 2011 6:22am EST
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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A recent CBS-TV poll found that 42 percent of those with internship experience got jobs, compared to 36 percent who got jobs with no internship experience.

Further, job seekers with an internship under their belt received a starting annual salary of $42,000, compared to $35,000 a year for job seekers who did not complete an internship.

In today's global economy, these numbers speak volumes: internships pay and they're not just for students anymore. More and more adults (including out-of-work Baby Boomers) are securing internships as a foot-hold in a particular industry or as a way to gain entry into a flat job market.

Whether an intern is a college student or a back-to-work Mom, the one common denominator they all share is that today's internship is 'a real job', which means interns (of all ages) must look, speak and act the part.

This applies to the burgeoning field of virtual interns as well, because e-communication matters.

Internship Biz Etiquette Tips

1. Whether you work as a receptionist greeting clients, in the back office stuffing envelopes, or assisting the CEO of a Fortune 50 company, look like you mean business. Rule of thumb?

Dress two levels above your current position.

2. Make a good first impression by shaking hands with everyone you meet. Technique? Two quick arm pumps while making firm, web-to-web contact.   Continued...