5 Tips for Landing an Internship in Change Management and Employee Engagement

In today’s market finding a job is no easy task and landing a great job is even more difficult. Increasing your chances of success in the hunt for a great job hinges on having a solid internship experience. This was the road that several young professionals, including myself, journeyed at Ketchum Change. Otherwise known as K-Change, this group sits as a specialty unit within Ketchum, driving change management and employee engagement programs and strategies.

K-Change consultants have a variety of backgrounds including Psychology, Business Administration, Journalism and Public Relations. These embody the expertise organizations are looking for as they face constant, fluid change, impacting communications inside and out. As communications professionals, we stand at the forefront to help companies thrive through change by reinforcing the value of communicating internally those messages that need to be shared externally. An internship in change and employee communications provides the opportunity to be exposed to real world client challenges, and work with a team of professionals to support change initiatives and create targeted plans to implement and sustain them.

Stephanie Gurtman, a Consultant at K-Change, previously worked at Insidedge and joined Ketchum Change in 2010 as an intern. “While working on a client project, I was encouraged to think outside my comfort zone while rolling out a corporate strategy globally. We developed, executed and measured the launch of this client’s new 2011 strategy to more than 13,000 employees at 18 facilities throughout the world.”

Gili Ben-Yosef, a graduate from Columbia University and current Associate at Ketchum Change, recalls her experience, “Even though I was an intern, I really didn’t feel that way. I was always given autonomy and responsibility. I spent a year deeply learning about our business, our field, and the variety of projects that K-Change has to offer.”

Sarah Klass, an Associate and also a recent graduate from Columbia, remembers some of her projects as an intern; “I worked on various projects including: internal communications strategy development (interviews with communications leaders, focus groups, surveys), brand launch (launch guide, training materials) and new business brainstorming.”

As a former intern, below are my five tips to help secure an internship in change management and become a valued contributor:

1)      Have experience in organizational psychology, business administration or working towards an advanced degree in these areas

2)      Establish a mentor/mentee relationship and maintain regular check-ins with your manager

3)      Devise a plan to track your progress and goals (e.g., a 90-Day Plan)

4)      Possess a willingness to learn in a collaborative and entrepreneurial environment

5)      Possess an intellectual curiosity about helping people and organizations reach peak performance

Nicole Horne received her masters degree in organizational development and change management from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology after receiving her undergrad degree in marketing from Notre Dame. She currently is Associate Consultant at Ketchum Change.


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