"Customer 1st & Employee 2nd" This phrase rings through the cubicles and in all of the work place of Fred Meyer. This company has many branches and many connections throughout the US.  Kroger is the mother ship for; City Market, Dillons, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry’s, Harris Teeter, Jay C, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs and Smith’s.  My internship was mainly involved with the Fred Meyer division of Kroger, but in turn I was in contact with all other divisions throughout my internship. 

The culture at the Fred Meyer headquarters is unlike any other company.  “They just do things completely different.”  The culture was very fun, upbeat, and inclusive.  The associates at Fred Meyer like to work around people they enjoy.  Associates enjoy a good friend or someone that could fit into their own family.  The associates spend a lot of time with each other . . .  I mean a lot of time!  Some of the associates joke about spending more hours with their coworkers then their own families.  Which completely makes sense seeing as how they travel all over the world to better understand their business, with their coworkers.  Even though Fred Meyer has a customer 1st Strategy, the employees are a very close second.

Life as an Intern:

“The interns of Kroger/ Fred Meyer didn’t have this expectation to bust our ass, we still did.”  Every department itself has its own culture, some were very straight forward and blunt about getting things done, others wanted perfection, and others wanted it to be a fun environment.  This diversity in perspectives played a vital role in the intern input within the outside ideas that we all brought to the table. 

Fred Meyer wants interns because they are fresh, new, and full of great ideas.   Interns are rewarded with all of the same perks as any other associate.  All of the interns for Fred Meyer and Kroger were given real world projects to try and either cut costs of by increasing profits. 

How I found the internship:

“It was one March evening,” George Saul said, “ thought to myself I should be productive tonight.” I found this internship through Linfield’s Career Hub, Cat connect. I had a good resume and cover letter, so I just sent it in and the rest is history. I knew that Fred Myer has been and will be around for along time and thought why not try it out and see if I like it.  They are stable and are not disappearing anytime soon. 

Intern Activities:

Throughout the internship experience, we had fun activities planned to stay connected with each other and the company.

We went to a distribution center that distributes for all of the stores in Oregon and southern Washington.  All of the interns and a few associates were given tickets to a Portland Timber’s Soccer game.  The seats were in the goalie box, some of the best seats in the house. 

We were taught how to balance work and our personal lives now, when we don’t have a family to worry about.  We balanced a social life over the summer with making sure that your work got all done when it is supposed to get done.

Intern Expectations:

“I worked on the Human Resources department team at Fred Meyer, and I was exposed to numerous opportunities of growth and innovation in my time there.”

The HR team had high expectations for me to get the jobs done, work productively, and communicate effectively. 

Was this experience worth it?

The associates at Fred Meyer GET STUFF DONE!  Some people show up at 6:00 then get done with their day at 3:00 pm.  Fred Meyer is a sports team of the business variety.  Once your job, at the main office, is complete, you can go home!  Fred Meyer is like a well-oiled machine.  As long as you do your part, the machine will keep on moving in a positive direction!  

The connections I was able to build, I still talk to my supervisors, I was opened to a few doors through my role as the HR Intern. The real life work experience I was able to get, and do impactful work for a company like this was awesome experience. It was cool to see the stuff I worked on in my business classes to finally be applicable in the real world.

Advice from this internship:

If you have the opportunity to interview with any employee, take advantage of this opportunity.  Any interview gives you good practice and it allows you to sharpen up your interpersonal skills of communication.  The worst the can say is no, so why not interview?


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