Innovation Never Goes Out of Style – The Story of a QL Intern

Yet another opportunity to write and tell a story about Detroit–this time, I wrote about my internship for the Quicken Loans website. It was a more casual, story-telling piece, and so much fun to write. I’ve been slacking on my blog lately, and haven’t even posted anything since I returned from Rome. This was a good chance for me to reflect on how things have been going so far, and to share my experience with others looking to spend their summer with this company!

By Suzie Vyletel
When you work for a company that’s always building a better mousetrap, you soon realize that every little thought and addition counts. This one-step-ahead type of thinking is wildly contagious—bring 1,000 interns into this kind of atmosphere and you can’t help but see results. Other companies provide coffee for employees… we create slushy machines and popcorn. They walk to meetings… we scooter. They wear nametags… we have fatheads. They have a break room… we have Nintendo in the lobby!
It didn’t take long for me to realize that my complacent way of thinking and operating wasn’t going to fly at Quicken Loans. Go with the flow is the enemy of progress—my team leaders aren’t looking for me to quietly make copies, but encourage me to contribute my own ideas and correct problems I see.
So how exactly do the team members here keep the creative juices flowing and their level of awareness up?
  1. They feed us delicious (and free) food! During the River Days event, we received food tickets that could be used at a number of food trucks and stands. A big hit for me was the Pommes Frites truck that served up a variety of delicious well-done fries and sauces, but that’s not the only amazing food truck that can be found daily downtown.
  2. They give us a lift! One day, while coming back from a meeting, a rickshaw-type bicycle pulled up next to us and offered us a ride for free, as QL sponsored the bikes for the day. We rode around Campus Martius in style, and I got to see downtown from a different perspective.
  3. They get us out into the city to experience all of the great things happening in the 313! This summer we were able to experience River Days, World Cup viewing parties and daily concerts in Campus Martius Park!
  4. Real, hands-on, responsibilities and assignments.  I accompany my team to meetings and interesting things like this photo shoot with a photographer from the New York Times! We spent the morning shooting from rooftops around Detroit, and the view was spectacular. Seeing the Motor City from several stories up completely changed my perception of Detroit. I thought that the only “pretty Detroit” was the colorful Campus Martius around noon when it is filled with people lounging in the beach chairs and listening to the live music, but even on a quiet and cloudy morning, I was inspired by Detroit.