Tag Archive: interns


spring break

Hi everyone!  If you have landed here from either the Poole College of Management or the NCSU Bulletin, thanks for taking time to read about our project!  The interns are not in the “office” this week (aka the library); we are all going on break.

If this is the first time you have heard about our project, check out the rest of the blog!

Here are links to find out more:  Beleza Beleza on eBay

Interested in fair trade?  Contact me at ajmarti2@ncsu.edu

Also…some very good friends of mine from the Caldwell Fellows program are headed to Atencingo, México for spring break.  Check out Saul Flores’s story here: The Walk of the Immigrants

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time to shoot some photos

We’re working full-force on our eBay site – bringing a fair trade store online is no easy task.  PDail has picked out which products we should feature first.  I’m using an iterative project management technique – we will put our first 25 products up.  By going through this cycle once, we can learn from what we are doing before putting up too many things.  This is a good process I learned in a software development class last semester – it lets people working on the project have more flexibility in what they do.  I’m amazed by all of the features eBay has – when we make product listings for jewelry, it asks us for different details than it would for, say, our scarves.

We’ve had to make lots of business decisions – what will our free shipping offer be?  What kinds of shipping will we offer?  Which products should we list?  The list goes on…

Some of our interns might model our products for the photoshoot, which would give us nice personal photos to put on the Beleza site.

i gantt keep track of it all!

A couple of years ago I learned some project management skills in a business class.  Although I have given the interns near complete autonomy, I suggested (but did not require) that they use Gantt charts to keep track of their projects.  Since there will be many interns working on each project, they will be able to access a google doc that will serve as a log for tasks completed for each project.  A Gantt chart is a graphical way to show all of the tasks that need to be completed for a project and when each task should be started and finished.  It’s a neat tool for us visual people; plus it automatically updates whenever you change dates or add tasks.  You can even zoom in and out to view time by hours, days, weeks, months and years.

Gantt Chart

Gantt Chart for making an informational pamphlet about the store

situational leadership

I met with some of the interns on Friday.  They will be introducing themselves on the blog soon.  Today, I used the skill called Situational Leadership to help guide the interns in to their first shift.  Although there is a team leader, she does not yet know everything that needs to be done with the site.  Part of the situational leadership model is that when a new group is forming, there is lots of enthusiasm but low skills and knowledge amongst the team members.  Therefore, the leader needs to use a directing style of leadership to eliminate confusion.

Because this is an internship, the interns will be creating their own projects but today I sent them a long e-mail detailing what they should do for their first shift.  I’m also going to stop by halfway through to check on them.  As they become a more solid team, I will be able to back off and only occasionally have to delegate tasks; the team will run itself.  Most of my work for this internship is going to be at the front end.  Once things become more established I think we are going to see the synergistic effects of teamwork!

I learned about situational leadership through the National Youth Leadership Training Program, The Shelton Leadership Center, The Caldwell Fellows and LeaderShape.  Here’s a good graphic that explains it:

Situational Leadership

Situational Leadership