Zero In this week looks at the issue of idle youth talent, offering ideas on how to harness their energy and groom the next generation. Read: Building Your Personal Brand. In it are featured many of the authors you have gotten to know over the last few months on this blog — my interns for the summer of 2009.
Many of you have written to me asking for details on the internships. Here are the internship Details:
• Intern should pick a core concentration area from the blog’s spectrum of coverage. Topics may include: an online vertical (Travel, Real Estate, Finance, etc.), Healthcare IT, Online Education, SaaS/Enterprise 3.0, Microfinance/Microfranchise/BOP, Convergence (chips, devices, carriers), Online Video, Digital Media, Online Advertising, Online Collaboration, Networking, EDA, Outsourcing, CleanTech (Solar, Hydro, Water), Entrepreneurship (Bootstrapping, Venture Capital, Innovation, Positioning/Strategy, India, Latin America, China, Insrael, Europe), Design, etc. [Look around on www.sramanamitra.com for ideas]
• Also, please see the Forbes piece: Building Your Personal Brand. It gives you a flavor of the types of work we do.
• Once you have identified the topic, start reading up on it (use the frameworks from the blog, then do additional research on the web).
• Develop a point of view on topic through the above process.
• Write at least 20 well thought through analysis pieces as “comments” on relevant posts on the blog. Could be ideas. Could be opinions. Could be questions. Could be contradictions. But has to be interesting and thoughtful, as well as thought provoking, and must demonstrate your understanding of the industry / business / issues in question. [They can be in the context of older posts. Typically comments always show up on the home page, and threads get revisited often.]
• These comments must also facilitate discussions from the community. I will be watching for your ability to not only contribute with ideas, but also contribute by engaging the community. Facilitating discussions is an art, and a great leadership skill. This portion of the internship is geared to help you develop and enhance this skill. You can use tools like Twitter, Facebook, etc. to engage people, but try to get them to come and comment at the site, so that you can showcase your work in one place.
• All comments must be posted in your real name, otherwise you won’t be able to cite it for evaluation.
• Those who demonstrate enough mastery of a topic and strong writing skills will be invited to write a series of guest columns on the chosen topic to establish industry credibility and visibility.
• If this opportunity interests you, take a look at the body of work done by Vijay Nagarajan on the wireless chip sector. Vijay was my intern while working at Atheros as an engineer. He wanted to switch to product marketing. Through his work with me, as well as his own blog, he gained enough visibility and credibility that he was aggressively recruited by Broadcom and is now a product manager there.
• I learnt a lot through the process of mentoring Vijay. And the internships that I have put together above are designed to help a larger set of young, ambitious, and hard working people achieve their career goals.
• I would like to particularly stress on the hard working point. I believe, anything can be learned by anyone, as long as you possess the right work ethic and attitude.
• And those who share my passion for entrepreneurship and innovation are the ones likely to get the maximum out of these internships.
This segment is a part in the series : Forbes Column 2009