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I am about to graduate, and I have received some offers, some of which are for full-time, while some are for internships. The offer from the company that I want to work for the most is, unfortunately, for an internship. I have about two weeks to make my decision.

Should I ask (demand?) my 'dream' company whether they would take me in as a full-time employer after my internship? (Or would that sound too desperate?)

I sort of want to work for this company, but I feel like I'm taking some 'serious' risk by turning down other full-time offers. (And to add more to the uncertainty, it took them about 3 days only to decide on my part-time internship offer. So it is not like my skill sets/abilities were so unbelievably extraordinary that they would definitely want me as full-time. I'd say I'm about a tad above average)

So the bottom line is, if you were a hiring manager, would you find it 'desperate' and/or inappropriate if I were to ask you about a full-time opportunity?

Second question, how often do companies make mistake in hiring? (ie., the candidate isn't as good as they thought s/he was)

  • 1
    All they can say is 'no'. – Jim In Texas May 24 '13 at 19:19
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There is nothing wrong with asking about possibilities of staying on as a fulltime employee but it is what occurs before that which is most important. By sticking to the list below you can almost ensure that you can stay on fulltime.

As an intern it is your responsibility to show your supervisor and others within the organization that you have what it takes, both personally and professionally, to fit in with the corporate culture. Taking time to learn about the mission of the organization and what it values in its employees, can provide essential information on how they identify and define success.

  • Develop Professional Goals.

Identifying your professional goals and finding a rewarding internship that meets your expectations will be more beneficial to your skill development and future career aspirations than accepting just any internship that's available. Internships are designed to prepare applicants for future jobs and careers; and finding an internship that will help you accomplish your professional goals will also assist you in being a more competitive candidate in your future job search.

  • Develop a Strong Relationship With Your Supervisor.

Be sure to keep your supervisor abreast of your work and accomplishments by checking in frequently and making sure you are meeting his/her expectations. Once you have identified your job responsibilities and you understand your supervisor's expectations, work hard to demonstrate your personal initiative and your ability to work both independently and as part of a team. Developing professional connections as an intern will give you a head start in developing a professional network.

  • Develop a Strong Work Ethic.

Establishing a willingness to get the work done at all costs while maintaining a positive attitude gives the employer confidence that you will become a valuable member of the team if hired as an employee.

  • Complete Assigned Projects on Time.

If you foresee a challenge with a deadline on a project you are working on, make sure you notify your supervisor and ask for any input he/she might provide or ask for an extension to get the project completed. Be sure that you offer a valid reason for the project delay such as other unforeseen problems or other work priorities that needed to be addressed prior to getting the specific project completed on time.

  • Always Follow Company Rules and Established Guidelines.

Becoming part of the corporate culture includes learning the established dress code of the corporation. It also means learning time allotted and what's expected for established lunch periods and breaks. Take your time to learn the rules and guidelines expected by the organization before jumping in and making any serious mistakes.

  • Seek Input From Supervisor and Colleagues on Your Job Performance.

Communicating with employers on your job performance will provide an opportunity for you to improve and make the necessary changes during the course of your internship. This input can be crucial in helping you to improve your job performance through clarification of the supervisor's expectations. Problems can often be avoided once expectations have been openly communicated and everyone is clearly on the same page.

  • Tackle Easy, Repetitive Tasks with Enthusiasm.

The employer will trust you to complete more difficult tasks once they recognize your ability to handle the small stuff. Asking for additional and more challenging work will be accepted more positively by an employer if you've accepted responsibility for the more tedious tasks that are required to do the job on a daily basis.

  • Identify Issues Not Currently Being Addressed by the Organization.

You can offer your insight on problems you identify and discuss how you might solve that problem or fill that need within the company. Employers seek people who can think out of the box and identify solutions to current problems that management may not have yet identified or addressed. Be prepared to offer solutions that you think might work to solve a specific problem or situation.

  • Show Initiative.

Illustrating your interest in developing new knowledge and skills relevant to the position will boost the employers confidence in your willingness and initiative to do a good job. Showing enthusiasm and offering to attend workshops or seminars will increase your understanding of the business and will make a favourable impression on your supervisor.

  • Ask for Additional Work.

If you do not have enough work to do, be sure to check with your supervisor to see if he/she has any additional work that they can provide you with. If not, check to see if you can assist others in getting their work completed which may also teach you new skills in the process.

  • I see. One question, though, should I ask them about the fulltime position now? (ie., before I accept the offer.Because the might not be looking for a full-time employee after I finish my internship?) – JasonK May 24 '13 at 15:54
  • It would be hard to say without knowing everything about the company in question. I would see if you can find anyone who was hired after they finished that way you can see if it does occur at this company. Asking them directly could seem as though all you are after is a job and not the career experience that they offer which may not be looked on favourably. But saying that they might welcome the honesty and confidence that would come with this question. – Michael Grubey May 24 '13 at 16:01
  • @OneTwoThree - They are not going to offer you a full time position now until they see how you perform in your internship... If they were they would have just offered you a Full time job. – IDrinkandIKnowThings May 24 '13 at 16:22
  • Well, actually, I did tell them I couldn't be full-time during this specific period due to some personal issue... But I see your point. Maybe the internship is some kind of 'interview' as they might not be sure about me? – JasonK May 24 '13 at 16:30
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    @OneTwoThree, all internships are basically interviews. How you behave has a great deal to do with whther they will make a fulll-time offer. There is some great advice in this answer. Read it carefully. – HLGEM May 24 '13 at 17:30
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There is nothing wrong with telling the company that you have other full-time offers but would prefer to work for them and would like to know the chances of being moved to a full-time position instead or after the internship in order to make your decision.

As to the second question, yes there are many hiring mistakes made by the company and by the individual being hired. You may even find your dream company isn't really what you think it is after you work there for awhile. Interviewing is not an exact science. Hiring mistakes are expensive and painful both for the existing team and the person who was a poor choice. No one wants to fire someone and no one wants to be fired and no one wants to keep working with someone who should be fired but the manager doesn't have the guts to do it. This is one reason why companies like internships for technical postions at the entry level because they are getting a test drive of your ability to fit in andd your general level of competence.

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You should first order your preferences. If they say no to full-time, is your next best option to take their part-time offer? or would you subsiquently not choose them at all? This could have a large impact on how you should present your request.

Sounds like there are a number of questions about the internship like how many of their interns turn into full-time, which you might want to fill in by talking with them in more detail. You should figure out which questions you need to ask and what answers you need to hear to prefer it.

If you would only choose them as full-time, there is no reason to beg or demand or bring in emotion in anyway. You can simply state in a matter of fact way that if the company was able to offer you a full-time position, it would be your top choice, but that you're primarially interested in full-time, so if they couldn't you will select one of your other full time offers.

If you're going to choose them either way you can still request a full-time offer, but perhaps just tell them that the company is your first choice but that you're weighing it against other full-time offers and if they also offered full-time it would make your decision much easier.

You should collect your thoughts about the questions you want to ask about the internship that would impact your decision, the answers you would want to hear, and the responses you would give in each situation, like my above example responses. Then take care of all of them in one phone call where you can get your answers as well as make the full-time request with the appropriate force.

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