June 2, 2017

Intern report: Cori Finefrock at Eaton Corporation

Cori Finefrock is a candidate in the full-time MBA program.

If you had told me this time last year that next summer I would be living in Peachtree City, Georgia, working as an HR Intern for Eaton Corporation, and learning about the future of lighting, I would have called you crazy. But here I am! My fiancé, our dog and I made the temporary move on May 15. We have a short-term apartment in a beautiful community that is sometimes home to actors and crew associated with the nearby Pinewood Studios. Movies like The Avengers: Civil War and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2. and AMC's The Walking Dead were all filmed here. Coworkers have even seen the occasional movie star at the neighborhood Starbucks. Peachtree City (PTC) is also home to over 90 miles of golf cart pathways, meaning I have seen more golf carts parked outside of a Target than I ever thought I would. In addition to PTC's many amenities, we are close to Atlanta, one of the fastest growing cities in the U.S., and everything it has to offer. No matter how great Georgia is, we Clevelanders will always be drawn to other Clevelanders. During our first week here we stumbled upon The Ohio Hog Company, an amazing, off-the-beaten-path BBQ restaurant owned by Cleveland natives and adorned with Cleveland photos and memorabilia. Our new home away from home!

I first learned about this internship after meeting one of Eaton's current Leadership Development Program participants at Weatherhead's Fall Career Fair. With a focus on Organizational Behavior, an HR Internship was one of most relevant options for me. I kept in touch with my new contact, followed up formally with the hiring manager in January, had interviews in the middle of February and received the offer by the end of the month. One of the immediate benefits of taking this position with Eaton was the large community of interns and seeing the operational excellence pursued at every moment of the onboarding and training processes. Eaton hired just over 200 interns this summer across all functions. Most of these interns descended upon Cleveland for a two-day orientation full of opportunities to network with each other and learn about the business from Eaton's leaders.

During my first two weeks, I have spent a lot of time continuing to learn about the business and the HR function through Eaton's many amazing resources. Eaton prides itself on having a strong culture of learning, so there are educational opportunities available to you at every turn. Just this week I took a five-hour Fundamentals of Lighting course. Eaton boasts one of the world's few training and innovation centers dedicated to lighting. The Source, as it's called, attracts visitors from around the globe. Trust me, lighting is actually very cool. Another learning tool they off is Eaton University, the company's proprietary training platform that has classes on everything from employee assessment to continuous improvement.

I have also begun to dive into my assignments, which revolve around seeking out and standardizing best practices for culture change management. By the end of the summer I hope to have developed new division-wide sharing and collaboration procedures, worked with facilitators and attendees on how to coach for and receive powerful feedback, and learned more about the world of compensation and incentive planning.

Check back here next month to read about how it is all going and about my two-day experience actually working on the manufacturing line!

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