International Interns Can Bring Diversity and Perspective to the Workplace


2 minutes

Today's workforce is more diverse than ever before. The increasing emphasis on globalization means that many companies have had to reassess how they recruit new talent. For businesses, a diverse international workforce can be beneficial for a number of reasons, and international students participating in career training programs can bring this diversity along with new perspectives to the businesses that host them.

A Variety of Perspectives

The growing importance of cultural diversity in the workplace is great news for international students who wish to participate in career training programs in countries outside of their own. Students who are open to exploring opportunities in several different countries are able to expand their training options, and often find that their cultural insights are valuable to multiple companies and countries.

Similarly, many companies realize the value of including international students on their teams. Young people participating in career training programs are often eager to learn, work hard and bring a fresh perspective to an organization. These qualities are especially important in fast-paced industries such as technology, marketing, advertising and finance.

Globalization has created a transitional shift for many organizations in terms of how their products and services are marketed. A diverse international workforce is invaluable to forward-thinking companies that want to branch out and expand into new business areas. Business environments with this approach can be a great place for students to learn new skills and provide companies with the benefit of their international perspectives.

According to EthnoConnect, different language skills are becoming increasingly important to modern businesses as well. Many companies are pursuing new markets overseas, and international students participating in career training programs can offer their bilingual or multilingual skills in addition to unique personal experiences that may benefit both the organization and fellow team members.

Memorable Work Experiences

As valuable as added diversity and new insights are to employers, international students gain an equal benefit from contributing to workplace diversity. As opposed to entering more homogenous work environments, young people participating in international internship or training programs are often able to engage with companies that value different cultures. As a result, people placed in such companies often enjoy greater learning opportunities.

Interacting with people from around the world benefits everyone in the office. Not only is multiculturalism a valuable asset from a business perspective, but it allows employees to grow personally, discovering the cultural nuances of their co-workers.

"Most of the time we are unconscious of how deep our cultural preferences are," said Karen Walch, an associate professor of business at Thunderbird School of Global Management, as quoted by Workforce. "We've been acculturated in what we value. But our brains are very elastic, and we can be reprogrammed with some reflection."

For management executives, leveraging the talents and skills of a diverse workforce can be one of the best ways to approach old problems from a new direction.

Ani Kington Ani Kington

Originally from Columbus, Ohio, Ani is a fan of exploring new places through photography and the local cuisine. After earning her BFA in photography from NYU and gaining communications experience at International Planned Parenthood Federation, she joined InterExchange in 2012, and worked as the Marketing Producer until 2016.

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U.S. Department of State-Designated J-1 Visa Sponsor
Alliance for International Exchange
Exclusive partner of the Erasmus Student Network for J-1 Visa sponsorship of internships in the U.S.
European-American Chamber of Commerce New York
Generation Study Abroad
Global Ties U.S.
International Au Pair Association
WYSE Travel Confederation