4 Reasons a High School Intern Could be a Fit for Your Business

When you’re evaluating potential candidates for your internship program, don’t discount students who might still be in high school. These younger candidates can bring unique value to your business.

In the lead up to the Third Annual Cleveland Internship Summit on Feb. 27, Mind Your Business will be running a series of articles previewing some of the sessions that attendees will have the opportunity to sit in on. Today’s preview focuses on the legal aspects of internships. Click here to view the other preview articles for this year’s Internship Summit.

When looking to fill internship programs, businesses oftentimes automatically go straight to college students. While these students can certainly prove to be competent internship candidates, these businesses might also want to set their sights a little younger.

JumpStart’s Zerrine Bailey and Youth Opportunities Unlimited’s Craig Dorn—panelists on the “Why Employers Should Consider High School Students for Their Internship Programs” session at the Third Annual Cleveland Internship Summit Feb. 27—took time recently to highlight some of the reasons high school students can be just as good of a fit for internship programs as college students are.

Listed below are just four of the reasons why your business should not be so quick to dismiss potential high school internship applicants.

1. They are tech savvy. These young people have proven to be very tech savvy, especially as it relates to activities such as social media. Having a high school student assist with a social media marketing campaign can prove to be a great value add for businesses.

2. They are trainable. High school-age students in particular have shown themselves to be moldable and open to constructive criticism. This kind of feedback can help guide their future career choices. And speaking of future career choices …

3. They are eager to learn. Many times, high school students have not yet settled on a potential career path and because of this, are open to learning as much as they can about many different aspects of the business. A college student on the other hand who takes an accounting internship, likely knows that accounting is what their post-internship profession will be and thus will be more focused on learning about that particular subject.

4. They bring diversity. Young students bring a fresh perspective to the office. And has been noted before, such workplace diversity holds a lot of positives for businesses.

Register today for the Third Annual Cleveland Internship Summit, taking place on Feb. 27, to learn more about internship program best practices.

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  • Next up: 4 Tips to Keep Your Business Accounts Safe Online
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  • 4 Tips to Keep Your Business Accounts Safe Online


    Online banking is a convenient and time-saving tool for business owners and non-business owners alike. In fact, one study claims digital banking users in the United States will surpass 200 million in 2022. 

    With the popularity of online banking growing rapidly every year, there are cybersecurity risks that are associated with it – especially when it comes to your business accounts.

    Follow these basic steps to keep your business’s confidential information and devices safe against online threats, phishing, malware and identity theft. 

    1. Keep your browser, computer and devices updated

    Even though those pesky update alerts on your computer and other tech devices can get annoying, they’re an important step in keeping everything safe from online threats. Be sure to update your tech – whether it be your phone, computer, apps or browser – to the latest update as they’re made available. Regular security updates make sure that everything is as secure as possible. 

    2. Use anti-virus programs on your computer

    Besides having the latest security updates on your devices, installing an anti-virus program on your computer can save you a lot of trouble. Disguised as regular downloads, viruses can be downloaded onto your computer while browsing the internet. That’s where the anti-virus program can come to the rescue - they’re designed to identify and block malicious viruses and other threats before they damage your hard drive, programs or files.  

    3. Never click on suspicious links or ads

    The reality is that scammers are getting sneakier when it comes to tricking people through methods like suspicious advertisements and links, and these can look like the real deal to the untrained eye. To help block these questionable links and ads, utilize your browser’s ability to automatically block pop-up ads so you have that extra layer of protection. Remember to always browse the web on a secure browser to avoid any of those malicious links, ads or downloads. Take an extra second to check if the website you’re using starts with “https:” as this signals that the website is secure and can be trusted.

    4. Purchase only on trusted sites

    Shopping online for your business can save you loads of time. However, it’s crucial to stay vigilant and aware of where you’re sharing your business credit card and account information. It can be tempting to click on sites that have promising ads or too good to be true items – which is particularly true if you’re looking for big-ticket items. However, those spammy websites are notorious for malware. If a site has questionable content, it’s best to avoid it and any links or ads that may live on it. Stay safe while online shopping by purchasing only on trusted websites.

    With these helpful tips, you can keep your business and personal accounts safe against malicious activity – and can give you a piece of mind.

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  • Next up: Getting Away: 4 Ways to Recharge Without Neglecting Your Business
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  • Getting Away: 4 Ways to Recharge Without Neglecting Your Business

    We know your business takes up a lot of your time, but you can still manage to break away to recharge your batteries without everything going to pieces at your company.

    I have been working with clients to shape more balance in their lives.  I have been working to do that in my own life as well.  There are a few things that I have learned.

    1. Planning is key

    Set vacation or rejuvenation goals that make sense for the cycles in your business.  I have a goal for a long weekend quarterly and then two bigger vacations one in the spring and the other at the end of the year, which is a staycation so I can have time for planning and family.

    2. Block out time

    As a business coach and consultant, I have to block out my away time just like its client work and plan that out for the year. Then it’s about keeping my commitment to myself. 

    3. Prepare your clients for your time away

    It’s just like a tradeshow and facilitating a big retreat with clients, I make sure I am attending to my client’s needs before I leave and scheduling their sessions and meetings in advance so they know they have me when I get back. This is great for my spring vacation because I am off the grid. I also leave work and instructions with my assistant to follow up with folk who have questions even if that just means she schedules a call with them when I get back. It’s about setting up systems for service while I am away. It’s a competitive world and most things can wait a few days, even a week.

    4. Go off the grid

    At first it was anxiety creating not to have my laptop, not to be connected to my phone.  It would take me the first 3 days just to detox from being constantly on and available to clients and on social media.  That’s when I realized I needed 7 nights so I would have time to detox, unwind, rest and have fun.  The short vacations, I try to work in the mornings before breakfast if needed and then let it go.

    If you are not taking breaks to recharge your spirit periodically, you will eventually experience burn-out, experience deep and unhealthy stress which causes all kinds of chronic disease.  Ultimately, you will be less effective than when you do take breaks.

    Monika Moss-Gransberry is President of MKM Management Consulting 

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  • Next up: 5 Common Flu Shot Myths Debunked
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  • 5 Common Flu Shot Myths Debunked

    Every flu season, the importance of getting an annual flu vaccine is widely advertised by doctors, health insurers and pharmacies. This is because the vaccine can protect you, and vulnerable individuals around you, like older adults or pregnant women, from the potentially life-threatening effects of influenza. But this year, with the coronavirus (COVID-19) still actively spreading, getting a flu shot is more important than ever. 

    Keep reading to determine fact from fiction when it comes to common flu shot myths. 

    Fiction: I could get the flu from the flu shot. 
    Fact:  A flu shot cannot cause the flu. Flu vaccines contain an inactive virus and therefore are not infectious. Some may believe they’ve contracted the flu because the most common side effects are skin soreness, redness or tenderness as well as skin swelling around the flu shot area. Less common side effects include low-grade fever, headache and muscle aches. These potential side effects only last one to two days. 

    Fiction: I don’t need to get the flu shot every year.
    Fact: A flu shot is needed every year because viruses change constantly. Every year, the vaccine is formulated specifically to predict which strains of influenza will be most common. Also, multiple studies have shown that the body’s immunity to influenza viruses (acquired either through natural infection or vaccination) declines over time. You have the best chance of being protected from influenza by getting a flu shot in the fall each year.

    Fiction: If I forget to get the flu shot in the fall, it’s too late for the vaccine to be effective for me.
    Fact: Though flu season generally starts around October, most cases usually occur between December and March, so getting the vaccine later in the season is still worthwhile. However, it takes about two weeks after the vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and protect against the flu. That’s why it’s best to get the shot before influenza starts spreading in your community, even if you are in perfect health. 

    Fiction: The flu shot will protect me from COVID-19.
    Fact: Unfortunately, because COVID-19 is a different type of virus than the flu, there is no scientific evidence that the flu shot will protect you from COVID-19. However, to avoid contracting both viruses at once, or during the same season, it is recommended that everyone over six months of age gets a flu vaccine. Additionally, getting a flu shot can prevent our healthcare systems from being overwhelmed due to both flu and COVID-19 patients needing serious care. There is no COVID-19 vaccine available for widespread distribution at this time. 

    Fiction: Antibiotics will help cure my flu symptoms.
    Antibiotics don’t fight infections caused by viruses. Taking antibiotics for illnesses such as a cold or the flu can contribute to antibiotic resistance, where bacteria and fungi in your body form the ability to decrease or stop the effectiveness of antibiotics. Antibiotics should only be prescribed by your doctor for a bacterial infection. 

    For more information, please talk to your doctor. If you are a COSE MEWA member through Medical Mutual, use our provider search tool to get started. To learn more about the benefits offered through a COSE MEWA health plan, please contact your broker or your Medical Mutual Sales representative. 

    Sources: The Cleveland Clinic, The Center for Disease Control and Prevention

    The material provided is for your information only. It does not take the place of your doctor’s advice, diagnosis or treatment. You should make decisions about your care with your doctor. What is covered by your health insurance will be based on your specific benefit plan.

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  • Next up: 5 Smart Hiring Practices Every Business Should Know
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  • 5 Smart Hiring Practices Every Business Should Know

    As with anything, there can be a right way and a wrong way to go about hiring. If you’re ready to add to your team, take a look at these five smart hiring practices and make sure you’re taking the best approach to finding the best candidate.

    Smart hiring practices can help you to identify and recruit the best people for the job. It may seem easy to gather a bunch of resumes and hire them if you like what you see on paper and when you meet the candidate. However, in taking that approach you may be doing a huge disservice to your business. Hiring and training a new employee costs money and time so it is important that you go about it in the right way. We suggest employing the following five smart hiring practices.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 1: Take the time to hire proactively. This means actively recruiting the right candidates as opposed to just filling the position with someone who may have some skills, but in actuality may not be the right choice for your business. Small businesses are often guilty of this. Just filling an open position instead of taking the time to identify, recruit and vet the right candidate is not the best route to a successful hire. Think of where you want your company to be in the future. Consider your growth plans and what kind of talent can help you achieve your goals and objectives. Taking the time to do it right will help you avoid mistakes, layoffs and firings, as well as lessen your risk and save you time, money and frustration in the long run.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 2: Thoroughly screen candidates. This is a very important step that should never be skipped! Consider all aspects of a candidate’s experience, personality, background and job history. Always have them sign a release that allows you to test for drugs, perform a background check and a credit check. While this may seem like an unnecessary step, especially to a small business, it can give you important information. You can hire an outside firm to run these checks for you. It’s well worth the minor cost. You may also want to consider personality tests that will give you an idea of how the candidate will work with others, clients, etc.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 3: Be aware of red flags! Never ignore red flags in the hiring process. These warning signals can include:

    • frequent job changes;
    • excuses or vagueness about why they left previous positions;
    • not researching or having any information about your company or what you do;
    • not being able to back up their resume with names, facts, etc.;
    • being late for interviews;
    • not dressing appropriately for a job interview;
    • not taking responsibility for previous failures, etc.;
    • being unprepared for the interview;
    • complaining about previous employers;
    • not being able to provide references; and
    • rudeness or a bad attitude.

    Also, be just as aware of a candidate being too eager or too bubbly. This can fade as time goes on to reveal a different attitude. Remember, you are most likely seeing them at their best during the interview process and this is always subject to change.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 4: Smart job listing practices. If you are going to post an opening somewhere it’s best to list objectives in addition to the job responsibility. You don’t want to eliminate people who could be good hires because they don’t have the exact experience for the job. Sometimes, the best hires are people who have the skills to meet the objectives, but their experience may be in a different area or industry. Skills are often transferable from industry to industry. Since there is always a learning curve anyway on a new hire, they can learn the nuances of your business if they have the basic skills.

    Smart Hiring Practice No. 5: Don’t throw new hires to the wolves. This means once you find a new hire, it is important to continue to mentor them and to help them fit in to your company. It can take months for a new hire to become completely comfortable. Make sure to offer training when necessary. And always give a new hire a copy of your employee handbook and make them sign a paper stating they received it. Communicate all objectives, your expectations of their timeliness, specific rules and regulations (i.e. use of cell phones on the job) and be clear in explaining their roles and responsibilities.

    While hiring new employees is usually not an employer’s most fun task, it is one of the most important. When done correctly, it can save time, money, hassles and can ultimately be a very rewarding process.

    Timothy A. Dimoff, CPP, is president of SACS Consulting & Investigative Services, Inc., a high-risk HR and security consulting firm located in Akron. He is a renowned speaker, trainer and a celebrated author of several books, including the popular Life Rage. Tim, a former highly decorated police detective and SWAT team member, is a nationally-recognized authority on high-risk workplace and HR issues, security and crime. Contact him at tadimoff@sacsconsulting.com.

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  • Next up: Thinking About New Glasses? Here’s 5 Steps To Choose The Right Frames
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  • Thinking About New Glasses? Here’s 5 Steps To Choose The Right Frames


    Choosing the perfect pair is easy! Here’s five tips to help you narrow down your options for choosing the right glasses: 

    1. Think About Your Face Shape
    Frames that contrast with the shape of your face tend to look better than those that reinforce it. In other words, people with round faces often find that square or rectangle glasses look good on them. People with square faces may feel the same way about round glasses. To better help you determine which frames enhance your look and style, here are four factors to consider when choosing eyeglass frames.  

    2. Shop Your Style
    It’s absolutely true that you have a lot of choices when it comes to eyewear styles. However, you’ve probably already developed your own tastes by now. Eliminate frame types that just don’t work with what you normally wear. Whittle down your choices until only a few candidates remain.

    Unsure of how you’ll look in a new pair of glasses? This is a common concern, especially if you’re trying a new shape or style for the first time. Use Eyeconic’s Virtual Try-On tool to preview many of your choices at home.

    3. Take Your Measurements
    There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to prescription glasses. Frames come in different sizes to ensure a comfortable fit that places the lenses right where they’re supposed to be on your face. There are three measurements you need to be concerned with: lens width, bridge distance, and temple length. You can often find these on your existing frames. If you don’t have a pair of glasses handy, visit a VSP Premier Program Practice for accurate measurements.

    4. Pick The Right Prescription Lenses
    It’s easy to lose sight of the real purpose behind prescription glasses: improving the quality of your vision. While frames get a lot of attention, lenses do most of the work. Your eye doctor will help determine what type of lenses you need, but there are upgrades available that offer special features.

    For example, special coatings can filter out the blue light emitted by computer screens while anti-reflective coatings reduce glare. It’s important to choose lenses that fit your lifestyle.

    5. Use Your Vision Insurance Benefits
    You can save quite a bit of money on new glasses if you have vision insurance. This is because insurance carriers often cover a percentage of the cost of new frames and lenses. Make sure you understand your benefits before making a purchase. For example, if you’re enrolled in VSP, you can go to vsp.com, create an account and see your detailed benefit information. Easily find information like co-pays, frame allowance, extra savings and lens enhancement coverage. Also, most VSP members can use their benefit to buy eyewear online at Eyeconic—including stylish frames, lens enhancements, and contacts. 

    If you haven’t already, take advantage of your COSE member benefit and opt-in to VSP Vision Insurance. Contact your COSE sales representative or broker for more info.

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