My experience having a mentor was one that I will absolutely never forget and cherish so much! For that reason, I hope that you continue reading today to find out exactly how YOU should go about finding informal mentors in your network, within your workplace, or even in an academic environment.

Finding Informal Mentors…

  • Use Your Network: The easiest way to meet new people and make those connections is through those that you already know! Whether this be a past professor, manager, coworker, family member, or friend, using your mutual connections creates a direct pathway towards your new “mentor.” Something as simple as a quick email may lead to a long-lasting relationship. So, do your homework and search through the connections you’ve already built to begin identifying new companies, roles, and titles that interest you and that you’d like to learn more about!
  • Reach out for Coffee: The first and most important step in cultivating a mentorship is reaching out! Always remember that people love talking about themselves, their past, and their successes and would be more than happy to share those parts of their career with you. No matter who you are reaching out to, it is crucial to send an introductory email, text, or call explaining who you are and how your interests compliment there own. Especially if you are connecting with a professor or student, stop by their office hours or meet up for a few minutes after class!
  • Come Prepared: Just as you are benefiting from their information and guidance, make sure that they are benefiting from you as well. While this does not mean to bring gifts or other presents, we highly encourage you to do your homework before chatting. You should know about their background, interests (as simple as a LinkedIn search!), and current role before sitting down. That way, you can breeze over the general questions and get to the good stuff. By showing that you’ve done your homework, you are indirectly confirming your interest in their profession and appreciation of their time.
  • Stay Connected: Mentorships don’t just happen overnight. In fact, the most valuable relationships take some time to cultivate until you can truly feel comfortable and confident in seeking complete, honest guidance. Keep this person up to date with your accomplishments, new roles, successes, and even challenges! You’d be surprised how much a quick phone call allows people to stay in touch through time.

Informal mentors come in all shapes and sizes. So, what are you waiting for? Go out and find one today!

Searching for a new position? Check out our open jobs list!

Be sure to avoid these easy-to-make mistakes while networking!

This summer, I was granted the fantastic opportunity to be paired with a formal mentor for the duration of my 10-week internship. To my surprise, my mentor was a UW-Madison alum (the college I currently attend) and had a bunch of things in common with me right off the bat. I was so excited to dive into our mentorship experience together and felt even more prepared as a result of prior research I had conducted on the meaning of a “mentor” and how to extract the most out of our time together. So, how did it turn out? Keep reading to find out…

Having a Formal Mentor…

  • Honest Communication: My favorite part about having a mentor was that it gave me a weekly opportunity to be completely open and honest about my experience, questions I had, or regarding projects or responsibilities that I did not feel were “important” enough to take to higher leadership. My mentor was a constant source of guidance, free from judgment, and a fantastic voice of wisdom for any and all inquiries. While I had a phenomenal overall experience, she absolutely provided me with meaningful advice regarding my future, my hesitations, and how to navigate my “likes and dislikes” about the role I was placed in.
  • Lessons of Other Internal Roles and Opportunities: While I was situated in the business risk office, my mentor was a member of the consumer insights team. Coincidentally, she had the role that I had always hoped to explore and was highly interested in! Through her, I was able to gauge what it would actually be like to possess consumer insights-related responsibilities on a daily basis, what career acceleration could look like from that standpoint, and how each of the 5 consumer insights roles complements and differs from one another. It was absolutely fantastic and all the more valuable to hear candidly from someone not so far from my age and career standpoint about her own experience. As an employee, she also had fantastic insight (no pun intended) into a plethora of different roles possessed by colleagues, past mentors, managers, or other alum.
  • Connections! Another awesome component of having a mentorship program is in its ability to set you up with a list of connections stemming from colleagues, other alum, friends, or even past mentors in different roles across the entire company. Having my mentor point out roles she thought I may be interested in ended up allowing me to explore entirely different responsibilities and positions that I had not previously been aware of!

Mentorship is an essential part of business and its evolution. So, having mentors in various roles, of all ages, and all backgrounds will allow you to learn from a variety of perspectives about your self, your interests, and future opportunities. However, not all companies provide interns with direct, formal mentors. So, how do you go about finding an informal role model? Check back in Thursday to find out!

Searching for a new position? Check out our open jobs list!

Interested in my experience? Keep reading to find out about my role as an intern here!

In our last article, we pointed out some interesting cautions to take when thinking about hiring friends and family. However, just as many endeavors come with pros and cons, so does this one! So, if you’re in the position of expanding your business and taking on new employees, make sure to keep reading about why it may benefit you to consider close friends or family…

Keeping Family on Board…

  1. You Know Them Best: We hope this does not come as a surprise that whether we’re talking about your spouse, partner, friend, family member, sibling, past coworker, or any other close relationship you have, you likely know more about them than most other people in the world! Knowing all of the strengths of the person you hire before even placing them in a position is an enormous benefit for your business model. We encourage you to, again, evaluate the responsibilities of your open role in detail to be able to fully consider if this person would take over in a positive way.
  2. Surpassing Onboarding: Especially for those of you in a time crunch, on a start-up timeline, or crammed for expansion, hiring someone that you know, love, and trust will allow you to diminish the time it takes to run background checks, tests, and a whole bunch of time-consuming onboarding tasks. Time, as we know it, is the most scarce resource in the world! So lack of it may prove one of the best moments to ask a favor of a loved one.
    • Extra Tip: Look out for opportunities where you may require a temporary, informal favor! While this by no means should encourage you to ask for hours of volunteer work from your friends or family, bringing someone on to nail out a quick business problem, solidify the launch of a new role or opportunity, or to take some of the burdens off of your shoulders could prove enormously useful and beneficial to your entire company.
  3. Pre-Established Trust: In the same way that you will most likely be well aware of this person’s strengths to use to both their and your own advantage, it is more likely than not that you will be taking someone on with an already solidified level of trust. When this comes to delegating tasks and giving up certain responsibilities that you are used to mandating on your own, it is crucial to be able to hand off your duties to someone you know will prove their worth!
  4. They Care About You! While your business will always be your own “baby,” the people closest to you will also feel a personal investment in your success. Hiring someone who already feels an attachment to your company and its initiatives is someone who will stand by your side through thick and thin.

Now that you know the pros and cons of including those that you love in your business, you are ready to take on the hiring process!

Searching for a new position? Check out our open jobs list!

Missed Monday? Find out why NOT to hire people you “cannot” fire here!

Attention all business owners and start-up entrepreneurs! Are you battling the task of expanding your team, hiring new members, or deciding whether to add on new roles within your company? Well, we’re sure that during the time between the start of your company and today, you’ve been faced with the opportunity (or favor) to hire a family member or close friend. While there are pros to doing so, we definitely want to make you aware of some cautions to look out for in your business model.

To Hire Close Family and Friends…?

  1. Emotional Involvement: Most likely the first thought to cross your mind when you think about walking into an office alongside your spouse, sibling, college roommate, best friend, cousin, or any other person of a close relationship is the emotional attachment. After all, these people aren’t just strangers that you met during an interview, they are some of the most important people in your life! We hope that the relationships you hold most closely to you are those that will last a lifetime. However, having the emotional capacity to leave your thoughts and feelings out of business decisions is no easy feat. Make sure to weigh the concrete, measurable value each of these people brings to your business model. Are they going to act as resources or are you going to hire additional work obligations?
  2. Superiority and Business Hierarchy: You must remember that you are, in fact, the boss of this organization. The blood, sweat, and tears implored into this operation are those of your own, and there is no one else in this world who values the success of this company in the same way that you do! For that reason, you must remain capable of implementing orders, providing direction, and ultimately offering critique to each of your employees. If you are someone who will be more uncomfortable than confident in this type of setting, think twice before adding someone you feel close to to your team.
  3. Others will Assume Favoritism: There is no doubt about it… the moment that you add a family member or friend to your team, they will immediately become the perceived favorite amongst all of your employees. Battling this assumption will not prove easy, and in some instances may lead you to feel as if you must treat this person unfavorably just to prove a point. Be cautious of this when determining which role to place your friend/family member into so as to maintain a fairly perceived environment as a collective team and company.
  4. Unequal Expectations: This point relates most closely to the employee that you are actually hiring. This person may come in with preconceived notions about how you run your business. Whether this benefits or hinders your ability to set expectations of this person’s responsibilities, it is crucial to both your and their success to set measurable and clear goals for the month and/or year. This way, there will be no room left for debate as to whether this person is performing well based off of their perception, or below the belt.

We hope that you each find yourselves in the position of hiring others at one point in your professional lives! What an accomplishment to be had, and also one that comes with a massive responsibility. Follow these guidelines and you are set to make clear cut and beneficial decisions for both yourself and your corporation.

Searching for a new position? Check out our open jobs list! 

Read our recent blog to find out the benefits of exploring different internships during your college career!

Entering the business world can seem daunting! However, one of the best parts of pursuing a career after graduation is your ability to relocate anywhere in the world that interests you. Today, we’re here to introduce you to and point out some of the best places to do so in the United States. So, if you’re looking to gauge some pros and cons of certain cities in the US today is the perfect day to keep reading!

Best Places to Start a Career…

  1. Denver, Colorado
  2. Boston, Massachusets
  3. Seattle, Washington
  4. Austin, Texas
  5. Nashville, Tennesse

Each of the cities presented in the list above proves a fantastic place to move to after college for a plethora of different reasons! For example, if you are someone who highly values the importance of a work-life balance, we encourage you to pursue a new opportunity in Denver. As a city with some of the best resources for nature exploration, restaurants, a young environment, and many other pros, Denver is an up and coming location that students are flocking to! Additionally, Boston and Seattle are home to so many headquartered companies that you are nearly guaranteed to be able to explore a vast array of business leading companies in a short period. While this cities are large and bustling, they are great locations to explore if you are someone still looking for a community feel and ability to find a small-town group in a large place! Finally, Austin and Nashville hold several similarities. While they are both some of the fastest-growing cities in the country, they each behold phenomenal weather year-round and a young, unique vibe. Especially for those of you country-lovers, check out these cities post-graduation! They each possess fantastic social opportunities, restaurant and bar scenes, and fast-growing companies providing a young, enjoyable culture.

Special Reference to…

  1. Chicago, Illinois
  2. New York City, New York
  3. San Francisco, California

We chose to group these 3 and add a special reference to their opportunity as we view them more as “OG’s” (in millennial terms). They are each, and constant, fantastic locations to choose from no matter which industry you may be pursuing. We want to pay special attention to encouraging those of you technologically interested individuals towards San Francisco (of course, for Silicon Valley!), the makeup and fashion-oriented young professionals towards New York, and a mix of the two towards Chicago! Although the cost of living in these cities often superceeds the vast majority of the United States, they provide opportunities that you simply will not find elsewhere!

We hope that just from this read you can understand that no matter where you end up, each city possesses a fantastic list of reasons why it proves beneficial to move to and spend a few years building a professional presence within! If you have any subsequent questions, feel free to direct them to [email protected]!

Searching for a new position? Check out our open jobs!

Check out our recent blog to find out what you should look out for before accepting a full-time position!

In the heat of career fair season, we understand that many of you are faced with the decision to either return to the company you worked for this summer or pursue a new opportunity. Today, as part 1 of our 2 part saga, we’re hoping to teach you about some of the benefits of following a second-year internship at the same company.

Benefits of Returning . . .

  1. Sense of Role-ownership: One great aspect of returning to the same company you’ve worked at before is the relationships you’ve already built. Utilizing those connections, especially with hiring managers or internal recruiters, may allow you to gain some freedom in choosing which role you pursue in your second year. Whether this means transitioning to another team, project, or an entirely new subset of a company, taking advantage of internal resources will prove highly valuable.
  2. New Mentors: Another way to make use of your experience is by beginning to envision the type of mentor, or mentors you can pursue upon your return. Building additional connections to expand your internal, and potentially external, network is a great way to continue to gauge your own career interests and desires.
  3. Even Larger Network: While you have likely already built a sturdy network within the company you worked for, returning will allow you to build an even larger number of connections by surrounding yourself with employees of all different backgrounds, job functions, and teams. While this is especially useful for interns or graduates returning to larger companies which offer a greater and larger variety of employees, deepening connections will always prove useful. You never know if the connection you built may find themselves in a leadership role and in need of a new employee on their team. Better yet, mentors often transition into higher roles where they may then recommend you to take their previous spot!
  4. Opportunity to Relocate: If you work for an organization which houses several locations across the United States, returning to your previous position as an intern may allow you to internally “build your roots” within the company and, later on, have a greater say in where you are placed permanently. This is a huge component of your future and definitely important to continue to keep in mind! If you are happy where you live, you are much more likely to enjoy what you do!

Now that you’ve seen some leading factors in the benefits of returning to a company for a second-year internship, we’ll introduce you to a few reasons that may lead you to decide to explore elsewhere. While we don’t have the right answer for you, we’re hoping that you can lead feeling educated, well-versed, and with multiple different perspectives!

Missed our last blog? Check out what to look for before accepting a position here!

Searching for a new position? Check out our open jobs!

If you’re a college student or recent graduate applying to a full-time position or internship, I want you to take a moment to acknowledge your value in today’s workforce! You are among the top talent entering each industry and bring with you a plethora of unfounded knowledge based on a new digital age. In understanding the intelligence and talent you behold, I hope that you weigh the aspects of a job offer than I present to you today. Keep reading to find out…

What to Consider In a Job Offer:

  1. Salary and/or Hourly Wage: Although it may feel daunting to discuss money as a student or hopeful intern, it is important to be aware of the typical pay of an employee of your age, major, experience, commitment, geographical location, etc. We encourage you to utilize online job resources such as to try to gauge what a typical salary of someone in your same position should be expecting. Additionally, if you are under the impression that you may be shorted (potentially through conversations with an advisor, mentor, or colleagues), it is crucial to understand the pay you are foregoing for the offer at hand. Pay may not be your highest priority, but if it is, this is super important to look out for!
  2. Benefits: Evaluating the benefits associated with your offer is undeniably one of the most vital aspects of your offer (especially if you are searching for a full-time role). However, I am directing this more towards interns because… believe it or not, there are several benefits to think about (even if not monetarily based!). Some of the most valuable include:
    1. Networking Events, Ability and Encouragement to Connect with Company Leaders
    2. Intern Events to Stimulate Relationship Building Among Your Co-workers
    3. Mentorship Opportunities
    4. Autonomy in Choosing Your Role … Depending on your industry of choice, this one may waiver. However, if you are focused on an area of business that provides diverse roles (such as Marketing), we encourage you to inquire about your ability to voice your hopes and desires for your role and what you hope to take away at the end of summer.
    5. Volunteer Work
    6. Internal Networking and/or Coffee Chats with Employees
  3. Full-Time Role: Especially for those of you entering your senior year after next summer, it is key to begin thinking about what your life may look like if you choose to work for the company you are accepting a role within. Can you see yourself working here after graduation if given an offer? Is this organization part of a loose “5-year plan”? Will this company help you achieve career goals or aspirations?
  4. Lateral Movement: We encourage you to begin your career within an organization that will allow you to pursue a variety of goals within its own walls. The last thing we hope is for you to accept a role and have second thoughts after a few months. For that reason, we hope that you try and visualize all of the opportunities that come with every company. Is there room for you to move around and try some different roles before committing to a long-term position?

These are only some of the many components of a job offer to think about before accepting! We hope you are beginning to create a mental list of everything valuable that you hope for in your new role.

Missed last weeks article? Find out the Top 4 Difference Between Large and Small Companies here!

Searching for a new position? Check out our open jobs list!

Hello everyone – I am so excited to announce that I will be returning to Esquire Recruiting as their Social Media and Marketing Intern (and also blog-creator) for the fall semester! For those of you who may not know me, my name is Hannah McDermott and I am an incoming junior at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I am majoring in Business, specifically in Marketing and Risk Management, and for that reason had pursued my first internship in a corporate setting this summer. Keep reading to find out more about my experience…

Life as an Intern…

So, is life as an intern in a corporate office all it’s cracked up to be? My answer in short for you is… yes! I am elated to be able to recount the incredible experience I had during my internship in Risk Management for you all. In all honesty, walking into my first day came with nerves, jitters, and moments of intimidation. However, walking out on my last day, I felt rejoiced and confident both in my newfound knowledge gained from my responsibilities and also as a business professional. I thought the best way I could convey my experience for you was by taking note of some of my favorite components of this summer!

  • Intern Events: Working as one of about 150 interns hired came with some major perks. One to keep in mind when weighing your own interest in working for a large company is the advantage of coordinated events that many organizations put on for their intern groups. Due to the magnitude of our group, I was able to attend a Chicago boat cruise, networking events, an ice cream social, and even an off-campus volunteering event! I truly looked forward to these special days, as they not only helped me to feel immersed in the company’s culture but amongst each of my intern peers who quickly became some of my great friends.
  • Mentorship Opportunities: Working around hundreds of other employees also posed the opportunity for one to pursue mentors, both formal and informal, across several, differing job functions. I’ll combine mentorship with networking, as the two were super intertwined and each intern was not only supported but encouraged to explore each area of the company and identify our own interests outside of our immediate job functions. In doing so, I was able to identify certain areas of Marketing and job roles that I would love to pursue in the future!
  • Autonomy and Freedom: One thing that I hadn’t expected of an internship prior to this summer was the true freedom I was granted in leading each project I was assigned, and achieving the goals I had set for myself during the first week of my summer. I was astonished and felt incredibly valued in the idea that even at such a large organization, my thoughts and actions were heard at such a high level; I was truly treated as a regular full-time member of our team.

Keep tuning in throughout this week and month to hear more about what I loved about my summer, what I would have changed, and what types of thoughts and ideas to look out for as you start applying to your next internship! Thanks for listening 🙂