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Creative Sparks

Interns can do more than stuff envelopes. The key to releasing their potential is recognizing them as an important part of your team.

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This story appears in the April 2007 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

For John Ellett, 51, having interns on staff at his Austin, Texas, marketing firm is a no-brainer. "Our interns are valuable because they bring a fresh and youthful perspective to many of our clients," explains Ellett, co-founder of $20 million nFusion, launched in 2001. Tapping into the innovative approach of young interns is a smart business strategy, and one that more and more savvy entrepreneurs are employing.

A far cry from programs in which interns do little more than brew coffee, nFusion's program is a prime example of harnessing the creative power of young minds. Interns at nFusion are treated as employees, with hourly pay and meaningful work that inspires them to excel and contribute to the organization.

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