I work in a branch of a company that has 30 people. One week before I was hired, 3 college students were brought on as interns. As a result, three times in the past couple of weeks I've been referred to as an intern (making me think multiple people than that believe I am one). I am not as concerned about the title, but I want people to think of me as a permanent part of the team. Additionally I'm almost 30 but look like I'm 21, so that doesn't help the situation. I've been correcting people but I don't want a reactive approach or to have to wait it out for months. Does anyone have any advice?

*I've been here for 5 weeks.

  • How long have you been working there? – DJClayworth Jul 11 '14 at 17:23
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    "I'm not Interned; I'm Persistent!" (bad programmer joke) – keshlam Jul 11 '14 at 17:28

I've been correcting people but, I don't want a reactive approach or to wait it out for two months to be the solution. Does anyone have any advice?

Handle it with humor.

If you have a nameplate on your office or cubicle, print a picture of your face with the phrase "NOT an intern" beneath it, and hang it up under your nameplate.

You could also consider hanging a sign around your neck for a day or a large lapel button that says "NOT an intern".

As Amy Blankenship points out - you could have a T-shirt printed! That would be memorable.

Perhaps your shirt could have the word "Intern" in a red circle with a backslash across the front (the universal "No" symbol).

You should get a laugh, and people will get the point.

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    Them - "This is Jeff, an Intern." You: "Oh, no, I'm not that easy to get rid of. I'm staff. You're stuck with me." – Wesley Long Jul 11 '14 at 17:58
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    I think having a tshirt printed would be fun as well :) – Amy Blankenship Jul 11 '14 at 19:31
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    +1. That's the way to go. I would add that we had a guy in your exact situation a while back but he decided to react by being angry everytime someone would refer to him as "the intern". Guess what happened ? More and more people started to call him "the intern" :) – ereOn Mar 5 '15 at 20:23

Additionally I'm almost 30 but look like I'm 21, so that doesn't help the situation.

Enjoy that while it lasts! Seriously, what can you do other than correct them? Just don’t take it personally & let your work reflect your permanent status. Not much else can be said or done to force perceptions to change.

Also, unclear on how this is being conveyed, but for all you know they could be screwing around with you. Perhaps it’s a light form of hazing. If so, don’t sweat it. Just roll with it. And perhaps figure out creative ways to convey they fact you are not an intern that will maybe win you over with the rest of the team quicker.


Send an email to your group and say "Hello, I am Jeff [Whoever], your new full time colleague. Some of you have already met me. I am sitting at the desk [identify location(*)]. I started on [Date Whatever] and I am looking forward to getting to know and working with all of you - Feel free to invite me to lunch :)

(*) by the restroom, by the coffee machine,next to Jennie Muller's and Jane Sanchez's, etc.

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