Gene Marks on Interns vs. Employees

Do I need another employee, or a summer intern? Do I have to pay my intern? Business expert Gene Marks gives advice on some of these tough employment issues.

Video Transcript

People talk about interns, and boy, the topic of interns has become so complicated over the past few years, versus, you know, hiring a, a part-time or a full-time employee. My view, and it’s, it’s fun – I actually volunteer at a school in Philadelphia. We’re placing kids, juniors, it’s an inner-city school, at, at different companies, you know, for them to get internships during the summer, and these companies I’m reaching out to, I’m saying, it can be paid or unpaid. It’s completely up to you, but I mean, my view is that whether – if, if an intern is going to be coming on board and performing services and helping you in doing stuff that’s of value, you should be paying that person. I mean, they really should be viewed no longer – no different than a part-time person. So people talk about should I hire an intern, should I hire a part-timer? Well, one thing is just the, the length of the job. You know, if you just need a summer project done or just, you know, some filing or some, some basic, you know, that you know has got a beginning and an end to it, then maybe an intern is fine. And boy, do I encourage that. I mean there are so many schools where there are high school students that are looking for that kind of work experience. If you do bring on a kid that’s an intern, I, I strongly feel you should be paying for that intern, at the very least, you know, reimbursing them for their travel or transportation to get to your offices, or picking up their lunch. But, I mean, if they’re providing a service they should be paid. Now, if it’s a longer term project, something that you can going on for months or even years, that precludes even having an intern ‘cause an internship to me, you know, by definition, is a short term kind of thing, and that’s when you would probably bring on somebody part-time to do the work.

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