The Untold Story of the Rogue Intern

Jun 18 17:38 2020 Ellisen Wang Print This Article

Becareful when you bring in new people into your business. You never know what they'll do and how long they'll stay around.

This was an incident none of us expected.

It was a normal day interning at the startup non-profit educational organization. I sat down at my desk and looked at my calendar to see if I had anything scheduled for the day.

One internship interview.

Graphic design major student (We’ll call him Marvin).

No biggie.

He arrived in the afternoon and I went through the standard interview process with him. After he left,Guest Posting I had a short meeting with the Executive Director and he decided to take him in.

Marvin started immediately and came in every weekday for the next few weeks. But things weren’t all rainbows and unicorns for him.

You see, this internship wasn’t any ordinary internship. It was also a coaching and mentorship program, which means a lot of critiques, some yelling, and a little bit of crying.

I may not be a graphic designer, but from what I’ve seen during my time there, it’s an extremely detail-oriented craft. And when you jump from theoretical college work straight to real world projects, the learning curve is massive.

So he made a lot of mistakes, and as a result, he would get yelled at.


Eventually, it got to the point where he couldn’t take it anymore.

One day, Marvin asked if he can leave early to take care of other things. Nothing out of the ordinary.

A few days after that, I logged in to our Google Drive and found out half of our drive was wiped out.

We figured it was Marvin. I tried texting and calling him. No answer. And he never came back since we last saw him.

Could we have seen this coming?

Absolutely not.

From the day he showed up for his interview to his last day in the office, he didn’t show any red flags.

Think something like this won’t happen to you?

Think again.

You never know who you bring into your business will end up backstabbing you. Whether they’re co-founders, managers, employees, or freelancers.

There’s a saying I heard from the great mindset coach, David Neagle, “Hire slowly, but fire quickly.” Something that should’ve been applied better here.

And so the lesson here is to take extra time to think whether you should bring another person into your business or not.

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Ellisen Wang
Ellisen Wang

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