Building Idiosyncrasy Credit with my Supervisor and Fellow Interns

It has been 5 weeks now working at Campbell Soup Company, and I am definitely getting the hang of the workplace culture and the way that things are run at the company. I have been getting to know some of my fellow interns because although I am the only intern for the Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability team, there are a multitude of other interns in different areas of the business. I am involved in the Supply Chain intern programming so I have met a few of those interns one on one, but I have not been able to meet many of the others.

Last Thursday, we had an intern breakfast where all of the interns were invited to share some things about themselves so we could get to know each other better. This breakfast went fairly well, but it is always awkward meeting people for the first time over a video call. In the one minute window I was given to introduce myself, it was difficult to show the other interns who I really am.

Idiosyncrasy credit is an idea that I learned from the reading “Legitimacy, Power, and Influence: A Perspective on Relational Features of Leadership” by Edwin P. Hollander. Idiosyncrasy credit “illustrates how credits accumulate and have operational significance in permitting innovations that would be perceived to be ‘deviations’ if introduced by another person with less credit” (Hollander 34). Essentially, by building idiosyncrasy credit, you build legitimacy and trust, which gives you some credit to deviate as well.

Remote meetings limit my ability and ease of building idiosyncrasy credit. It is more difficult to prove yourself as an intern and also build a rapport with colleagues when there is a screen between you and the other person. Over the past five weeks I have been trying to build my idiosyncrasy credit amongst my supervisor and my fellow interns because I want them to like me as a person and I want them to value me as a part of the team. When I make mistakes, sometimes I feel like I am losing idiosyncrasy credit, but I do not have many opportunities to gain some back.

That being said, I am very motivated to do my projects to the best of my ability. I use every opportunity I can to build my idiosyncrasy credit, make connections with my coworkers, and further my projects so that I can ensure that my summer is successful.