A Summer Internship in Social Media Strategy

Photo by adpowers via Flickr

Photo by adpowers via Flickr

Summer interns are one of the greatest traditions of capitalism.  Each summer, notoriously ambitious interns join companies eager to make an impact and deliver results.  For the Social Media Strategist, interns can provide a fresh perspective to companies looking to embrace Social Media.

At the dawn of E-Commerce (way back in the 1990s), GE executives gathered for a now infamous strategic session called DestroyYourBusiness.com.  Realizing the threat facing GE from the thousands of start-ups thinking differently, Jack Welch had his managers pretend to be one of the many Dotcoms trying to destroy GE’s existing business models.  This exercise helped GE’s leadership think about how the internet could quickly exploit a company’s weaknesses.

Here’s an adaptation of GE’s classic management idea for a meaningful 12-week summer internship.  Not only will your interns love the challenging and exciting assignment, this can also provide your company with fresh strategic thinking.

Weeks 1-2 – Industry and Competitor Assessment (2 weeks)

Weeks 3-5 – Discover Customer Needs, Problems, and Frustrations

Weeks 6-10 – How would a Start-Up Disrupt the Industry Business Model?

Weeks 11-12 – Create a 12 Week and 12 Month Plan for the Organization

I think this could be a very interesting business school project or paper.  Thoughts on how to adopt this for the classroom?

Posted on May 4, 2009 at 9:06 pm by Ben Foster · Permalink
In: Facebook, Leadership and Management, Strategy, Twitter · Tagged with: , , , ,

7 Responses

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  1. Written by Chris Brooks
    on May 5, 2009 at 3:27 pm
    Permalink

    Wow that was a great article. Any company would be doing themselves a disservice not to implement this program. Keep up the great work!

  2. Written by Chris Brooks
    on May 5, 2009 at 9:27 am
    Permalink

    Wow that was a great article. Any company would be doing themselves a disservice not to implement this program. Keep up the great work!

  3. Written by Alex Kemmler
    on May 6, 2009 at 2:31 pm
    Permalink

    A pretty full plate for an intern – any firm would be getting their money’s worth here, especially if the intern is unpaid.

  4. Written by Alex Kemmler
    on May 6, 2009 at 8:31 am
    Permalink

    A pretty full plate for an intern – any firm would be getting their money’s worth here, especially if the intern is unpaid.

  5. Written by Ben Foster
    on May 6, 2009 at 3:54 pm
    Permalink

    @AlexKemmler – It would be a full plate! The great thing about interns are that they are typically very ambitious and work really hard to prove themselves.

    As far as an unpaid intern…well, you pay for what you get. In the grand scheme of costs, a good intern is worth paying for.

  6. Written by Ben Foster
    on May 6, 2009 at 9:54 am
    Permalink

    @AlexKemmler – It would be a full plate! The great thing about interns are that they are typically very ambitious and work really hard to prove themselves.

    As far as an unpaid intern…well, you pay for what you get. In the grand scheme of costs, a good intern is worth paying for.

  7. […] “non-traditional” resources like Social Media interns, “rotational programs”, mentees, or any other interested employee that can help.  […]

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