Don’t Get An Internship. Start a Business.

Intern Nation

Sean Johnson:

If you’re looking to break into the business world (particularly the world of startups) and are having a hard time finding an internship, I suggest you stop looking. In fact, even if you think you have one lined up but haven’t committed yet, consider changing your plans. Start a business instead.

A traditional internship certainly has upside. You learn skills specific to a given career and get to execute them on a small scale. You get a foot in the door and hopefully impress your boss enough to want to hire you down the road. All good things.

But I’d argue a typical internship doesn’t give you the same value for your time as venturing out on your own. The amount of learning and growth you experience in your own company is orders of magnitude higher.

In particular, I think there are three critical skills you’ll pick up – skills that can be broadly applied to anything you decide to pursue next:

  • You’ll learn how to sell
  • You’ll learn how to manage others
  • You’ll learn how to create value for others

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