Crop Insurance Department: Interns Learn About Product Knowledge
8/18/2021
Crop Insurance Header Image

 

GreenStone interns gain real-world experience and are given the responsibility of leading projects on their own for the summer. They are able to gain a better understanding of the agricultural industry, while also gaining the skills to be prepared for their future careers.

 

Today, we feature Ben Mahlich, Vice President of Crop Insurance, who explained how he teaches his interns to be successful in their summer positions.

 

Q: In what ways do you feel interns are valuable to your department? To GreenStone?

A: Interns to the Crop Insurance department are a big lift of help on our parts. Every year, we have until August 15th to get our acreage reports in, and the interns are a crucial part of making sure these are in on time. Having interns that are reliable and able to time manage to meet these deadlines is very important. They have also become quite invaluable and an amazing part of our workforce every summer. To GreenStone, interns have helped us build our company into what it is today. They have changed and modified processes for departments that allow us to succeed and become more efficient. 

 

Q: What are the daily tasks on your interns?

A: The majority of crop insurance work is seasonal, obviously. In the summer, interns mainly focus on row crops. Interns are able to meet with customers on the daily, talk with Farm Service Agencies, and figure out what field and what date the crops were planted. After they do all of this, they key everything into a database and send it to our insurance providers. We involve them heavily in this entire process so they can learn what really goes into receiving crop insurance. 

 

Q: Are the interns given a mentor to teach them about crop insurance, or is it a team collaboration to onboard the intern?

A: Yes, each intern in our department is given a mentor for the summer. These mentors will welcome them, teach them more about the specific crop or crops they will be working with, and be there to guide them as they continue to thrive in their positions. Having these mentors is important so that interns can go to a specific person for help. Interns are usually assigned to a region, so they can also go to anyone in that region with questions or for help. 

 

Q: When you’re looking for a crop insurance intern, what previous knowledge do you expect them to have coming in?

A: This tends to vary but having a base knowledge about the agriculture industry is helpful, since we meet with customers and staff every week for this internship. There are so many acronyms in this field, so knowing the basics about farming will definitely help you get a bigger step in. We are also looking for a fast and eager learner. We are very busy in the summer, like I said before, so being able to catch on fast is crucial to be successful in this position.


Q: What have you learned the most from your interns, past and present? 

A: I have learned two things from our interns, past and present. One, is to get out of their way. They are ready to start learning and working once they start. We have to let them fail and learn from their mistakes when they hit the ground running. There isn’t anything that they can mess up that someone else can’t fix here at GreenStone. Two, is encouraging them to challenge our processes and listening to what they have to say. They are young and have a fresh perspective when coming into our internship program, so we need to let them challenge how we do things, so we stay the successful company that we have been since we started.

 

There is one Crop Insurance Intern at GreenStone this summer, and her name is Haley Brunton

 

“My internship at Greenstone has helped me develop skills in critical thinking and problem solving that will help me better work independently in my future career,” said Haley.

 

To learn more about GreenStone’s internship program, visit Internships (greenstonefcs.com). 

 



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