We know we’ve been quiet here on the blog, but it’s for a good reason. Besides working on client projects, we spent the summer mentoring a wonderful group of interns.
We took Redlight and Deemaze up on their offer and together we created the Nest Summer Internship. Our goal was to have a single team of interns, creating a new product, mentored by all Nest companies.
After some screening and interviews, the intern team ended up with 6 people (3 developers and 3 designers): André, Francisco, Margarida, Nuno, Pedro and Rafaela.
We presented the team with an high-level problem: help small bands get attention.
After an initial week of training, we did a design sprint. In the first part of the sprint they had to pick a more concrete idea to pursue. After some research and brainstorming, they decide on: an app to collect the concerts you attend.
The rest of the sprint was about exploring how that idea could materialize. They designed and validated a low-level prototype of what their product would become.
Fast forward one and a half months and Aurora is ready to launch: joinaurora.com
Mentoring a product internship is challenging and tiring, specially for a small team like us. But it's extremely rewarding as well. Nothing like teaching to make sure you get your concepts straight. And having a young team full of energy working next to you raises everyone's motivation.
What went well:
- A big team provides lots of interaction and different points of view;
- We had a driven team, already with many self-learned skills;
- The focus on team building and having a good environment;
- The final result is a coherent product, ready to be released into the wild.
What went less well:
- The focus on the process decreased as the internship progressed (we didn't have a project manager);
- The initial MVP became too large and filled up the entire internship (no time for product iterations).
All and all, having interns at Nest (or Bloco) is definitely an experience we want to repeat.
But as a future note, here’s our internship requirements list:
- Internship plan and goals;
- Time (for training, mentoring and spending time outside work);
- Financial compensation for travel and food expenses (at least);
- Clear expectations of future hiring possibilities;
- Continuous feedback (both ways).