Want To Work With Charlie Sheen? Here’s The Internship For You

Is your life a touch boring? Are you not “winning” enough?

Actor Charlie Sheen is hiring a social media intern for this summer and it is open to everyone. Here’s an excerpt from the posting:

This unique internship opportunity will allow a hard-working, self-motivated, creative, resourceful and social media savvy individual to work closely with Charlie Sheen in leveraging his social network. The internship will focus on executing a social media strategy that will build on the success Charlie Sheen has attained in setting the Guinness World Record for the fastest time to reach one million followers on Twitter. The #TigerBloodIntern is expected to be proactive, monitor the day-to-day activities on the major social media platforms, prepare for exciting online projects and increase Charlie’s base of followers.

Does that sound like a good internship? I think you might be surprised at how good it could be for the person hired.

A different kind of internship

The initial application itself is pretty basic — name, e-mail and a 75 character or less reason why you should be the intern they choose. Applications close this Friday the 11th. The confirmation screen following your application says that everyone will be notified on March 14 about the next steps. According to Stacey Levy, a spokesperson for Internship.com reached Monday afternoon, the position is open to any US resident (though relocation isn’t provided) and is paid. The spokesperson also said that their team at sister site CareerBeam would be narrowing down the submissions to 50 candidates for Sheen to decide from.

While most internships are busy with filing, taking calls, and maybe a few nuggets of learning interspersed, an internship with Charlie Sheen is likely to be completely different. While Sheen’s rise to prominence in the media over the last week has been impressive, who knows how long he can stay in the spotlight? Things like these come and go quickly. So, I am curious to see why he doesn’t need someone immediately.

That being said, there could be some very valuable lessons here. Celebrities are brands in and of themselves, so managing the social media presence for a very engaged celebrity wouldn’t be much different than doing it for a large company. While companies, with all due respect, are probably not as unstable as Sheen, that would make the internship only that much more attractive for future employers.

If you can handle executing social media strategy for him, you should be able to handle a similar position at a large company with ease. And you really can’t ask for more out of an internship than that experience.

There’s no guarantee that your sanity won’t be questioned though.

Viral nature of the job post

As soon as Sheen tweeted out the internship opportunity, it was retweeted nearly instantly. Many of those who applied also tweeted that they just applied for the job. Within the first hour, the Twitter hashtag #tigerbloodintern had thousands of tweets. Looking at the bit.ly statistics, the original link Sheen tweeted had over 100,000 clicks in the first hour alone.

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With people clicking through like gangbusters on the site, it is easy to see the true power of social media in recruiting. A truly viral message can be shared thousands of times over in a very short period of time. What lessons could employers possibly learn from this instance?

I don’t know if there is much there. For one, Sheen has a big, recognizable brand. So the reactions seem largely based on that. Now if TLNT wanted to post an internship opportunity, I’m sure it would get retweeted and shared but you’re not going to get those kinds of results (Editor’s note: Not unless we could come up with something better than TigerBloodIntern).

Still, it is kind of neat to see the hiring possibilities even if they are out of reach of most folks.

Sheen Recently Fired, Coincidental Timing?

One thing the intern won’t be doing: tweeting about Two and a Half Men. Around the same time the internship went viral on Twitter, it was reported that Sheen had been fired by Warner Brothers, producers of his hit comedy series:

The terse official statement read, “After careful consideration, Warner Bros. Television has terminated Charlie Sheen’s services on “Two and a Half Men” effective immediately.”

The studio, which owns and produces the series, will decide about the future of the show at a later date, a spokesman said.

Of course, the timing of it was curious but it isn’t like Sheen is going to avoid the damage that announcing he was fired from the series (a move not entirely surprising given his conduct) will bring.

Still, anything positive is probably a good thing right now. Or at the very least, the intern may learn very before they even get the job how quickly news will cycle between positive, negative, and indifferent.

Lance Haun is the practice director of strategy and insights for The Starr Conspiracy, where he focuses on researching and writing about work technology. He is also a former editor for ERE Media, broadly covering the world of human resources, recruiting, and sourcing. 
He has been featured as a work expert in publications like the Harvard Business Review, The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, MSNBC, Fast Company, and other HR and business websites.
He's based in his Vancouver, Wash., home office with his wife and adorable daughter. You can reach him by email or find him off-topic on Twitter.