Internships: How Stranger Things Got it Wrong and we Get it Right

Warning: This article contains spoilers for season 3 of Stranger Things!

If you’re like me, you most likely binged season 3 of Stranger Things as soon as it dropped on Netflix. We all remember the abomination that is the Mind Flayer, the secret Russian laboratory underneath the mall, and of course the tear-jerking letter Hopper wrote to Eleven (I cried and I’m not ashamed to admit it). But for me, as a Talent Management professional, there was one scene that stood out as even more horrifying than a Demogorgon. Remember when Nancy and Jonathan were interns at the local newspaper and Nancy was constantly belittled and ridiculed? How she was fetching snacks and coffee for the people in charge? How her ideas were immediately dismissed? Right…that is the true horror scene in Stranger Things.

by Brian Calhoun, Talent Manager North America

This scene led me to reflect on the internship/working student programs at riskmethods, and how wildly thankful I am to my colleagues for making them meaningful and significant for each intern that works here. We don’t hire interns to be task rabbits; we hire them with the intention of integrating them deeply into the day to day operations of our company. Thanks to this, our interns go on to be major contributors to the growth and success of riskmethods while learning valuable skills to take back to the classroom and their studies.

To highlight the value and success of our interns and working students, I spoke with some of them so that you can hear firsthand how impactful the program is.

What is the most valuable thing you learned during your time as an intern?

“I was always given privilege to be accountable for the systems that I created. This responsibility made me realize the importance of details in every task. Everyone in the office, having known that I aspired to be an entrepreneur, made me realize and develop the traits it requires to become one. I was challenged and inspired at every milestone. One of the most valuable things that I learned throughout my internship was that anything and everything is possible with team efforts. riskmethods has really given me what it takes to handle whatever comes at me. After all, there's nothing this team can't do. #oneteam”

Swagata Ghosh, Sales Solutions Intern, Boston

What, in your opinion, was your biggest contribution to the company?

“My biggest contribution was my willingness to take on a variety of tasks. I was fortunate enough to explore many different marketing avenues at riskmethods and did so with a determined and positive attitude. This ultimately helped to facilitate the achievement of several goals throughout my internship. My marketing coworkers knew they could count on me to support and execute anything that was overflowing their workloads. My readiness to take on anything that was asked of me significantly contributed to the overall goals of the company. I am very glad I was able to jump in to riskmethods’ operations and add value to ongoing and new business activities.” 

Adrienne Mielke, Marketing Intern, Boston

How did your day to day work contribute to the overall goals of your department?

“Four years ago, when riskmethods was not the size it is now, things like my bilingual upbringing contributed to not only our department as I was proof reading and translating content cross departmentally and creating data sheets which are still used as a vital part of the system today.”

Hannah Whippey, former Customer Success working student, now full time riskmethods Customer Success Manager, Munich

How did you feel you were viewed by the rest of the office?

“From the beginning I felt as if the company viewed me as a full-time employee. There was never a time or situation where I felt people saw me as “just” a working student. riskmethods does not differ between working students and full-time employees which is very rare and hard to find anywhere else. Our two founders really care to get to know everybody in the company, including the working students.”

Julia Forbes, former Marketing working student, now full time riskmethods Employer Branding Specialist, Munich

Let’s now hear from the business, and how some of our managers view and value their interns.


What is one accomplishment that stands out as particularly impressive from your interns?

“One focus of my interns is use case research for upcoming prospect-specific product demos, which takes a lot of time and a deep understanding of what information might be relevant. One of my interns once found the secretive location of a prospect, which we used in the demo and they were concerned that somebody leaked the information to us, but it was available online. That certainly made an impression in terms of relevancy!”

Stefanie Schori, Solutions Consultant, Boston

What is the ultimate goal of having an interns/working student on your team?

“We continuously push to develop working students so that they are doing the same stuff as any other CSM so they can contribute in the same way. Ultimately, we want to develop them to join the team as a full time CSM, like we did with David, Hannah, and Julia!”

Uwe Bradler, Director of Customer Success, Munich

What is your favorite part of mentoring and coaching an interns/working student?

“Watching them own a project from start to finish and leaving the program with a sense of accomplishment and a good story to tell. At the start of every new intern's program, we sit down to discuss what story they want to be able to tell when they leave here and what project they want to own. At the end of the internship, they will give a presentation to the wider team sharing with them their progress, successes, failures, and lessons learned. Some of these ideas have sparked great results and it shines the light on things that might be valuable for us to explore even long after the program has ended.”

Erin Denlea, Marketing Director, Boston

As you can see, an internship at riskmethods is far more than just something nice to put on a resume. It is an experience to gain valuable work experience, to contribute to the growth of a unique and dynamic company, to be challenged more than you may expect, and to be respected and celebrated as an important member of the team. It can even pave the way to becoming a full-time riskbuster!  

Are you looking for an internship or working student opportunity? Good news—we have openings! Check out our open positions and apply today.

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