The SciPhD Virtual Career Center provides instructional videos to address all your concerns as you enter the job market. Videos are 10 to 20 minutes long and each focus on one specific topic.

 

Videos cover everything from writing a resume, to building your network, communications, negotiating with your advisor, preparing for interviews and being successful on the job.

SciPhD Videos - organized by concerns

(expand topic for details)

When and why is a PhD not enough?
How much experience do I need and what kind?
Why and how is science in academia different from industry?
What particular skills is industry interested in and how do I get them?

Videos

Dissecting a Job Ad – Learn to identify all the critical skills the company values from the job ad and match them with your own experiences to show you have the skills.  These include not only the technical skills, but the business and social skills as well.  When companies say you are “under-experienced”, what they are really saying is that you don’t have experience with the social and business skills that are essential to working in a corporate team environment.  Learn how to identify and prioritize those skills in order to develop a targeted resume that shows you are business-ready.

Developing a Targeted Resume – The biggest challenge for academic scientists is to convince companies that you have the equivalent business and social experiences as those who have already held positions in industry.  Learn to relate your research experiences and other life experiences in ways they will value, and that will convince them that you do have the necessary experience and are business-ready.  This is how you counter the “under-experienced” critique.

Developing a Summary of Qualifications – Professional organizations are looking for candidates who ideally have prior industry experience. Your Summary of Qualifications is your opportunity to articulate your scientific excellence in the context of the business and social skills industry values. By expressing that value in a succinct 5-7 sentence statement goes a long way towards countering the concern of being “under-experienced”.

Developing Your People – One great way to show you have the kinds of experiences industry values is to demonstrate your successes in mentoring and leading a team.  This video shows you how to do that, and how to take advantage of your academic experiences to convince hiring managers that you have the practical experiences they value and require.  Many if not most companies want you to take on management responsibilities by your second year.  Show them you have what it takes.

Life in Industry – There are two rules for business:  Make a profit, and continuously improve.  That’s the experience hiring managers are looking for and require.  If you can show how you’ve managed deadlines, been accountable, and held others accountable, and productively worked in a team environment, that will help convince them you have the experience they value and are business-ready.

Learn to be a “Learner” – One of the biggest turn-offs for hiring managers is the stereotypical arrogant academic “I know everything because I am the expert” scientist.  Learning emotional intelligence, and how to shift from “expert” to “learner” is a critical skill.  If you can learn this skill, and demonstrate that you have used it successfully in your own work during your interviews, that will go a long way towards convincing the hiring manager that you have what it takes.

Introduction to Project Management – One of the most highly valued assets of new hires is familiarity with how to work in a team-based environment. For most medium to large-sized companies, project teams follow standard project management practices and principles. Learn how to express your past and current experiences using the language of project management in order to demonstrate that you have the equivalent experience of other candidates who have already worked in the professional world.

Do companies really require prior industry experience?
How can you get a job without prior industry experience?
What are the parallels between academia and industry experience?
How do you analyze a job ad for required skills?

Videos

Dissecting a Job Ad – Studies have indicated that close to 50% of new hires fail within the first 18 months of employment.  Of those failures, only about 10% are due to lack of technical skill, with the remaining 90% a result of “attitudinal” concerns.  Learn to dissect a job ad to identify these critical “attitudinal” requirements so that you can specifically address those in your targeted resume and during interviews in order to convince hiring managers that you have the equivalent to prior industry experience.

Developing a Summary of Qualifications – Professional organizations are looking for candidates who ideally have prior industry experience. Your Summary of Qualifications is your opportunity to articulate your scientific excellence in the context of the business and social skills industry values. By expressing that value in a succinct 5-7 sentence statement goes a long way towards countering the concern of being “under-experienced”.

Preparing for the Interview Process – Companies can’t afford to make a mistake when hiring new employees.  Their overriding concern when hiring scientists directly from academia is the candidate’s lack of experience working in teams.  So it is critical that you carefully research the company, the job, the people with whom you will be interviewing, in order to convince them you have the experience they value, even if not in an industry setting,.  Your technical expertise is a must have requirement, but may not be enough to win that job!

Translating Science Language to the Professional World – Hiring managers are looking for more than just a technical expert. There are many ways to describe your scientific training that demonstrate not only your technical skills, but your business and social skills as well. Learning this language is critical in convincing a hiring manager that you have the understanding and equivalent experience of others who already have industry experience.

Introduction to Project Management – One of the most highly valued assets of new hires is familiarity with how to work in a team-based environment. For most medium to large-sized companies, project teams follow standard project management practices and principles. Learn how to express your past and current experiences using the language of project management in order to demonstrate that you have the equivalent experience of other candidates who have already worked in the professional world.

What are the differences in time flexibility between academia and industry?
Why is academia so much more flexible?
Why is industry less flexible?
How is work-life balance in industry?

Videos

Developing Your People – It is true that working in a professional organization can put more constraints on your time flexibility than you have been accustomed to during your graduate and postdoctoral experiences.  The biggest reason for this is the emphasis on building and working in teams.  But there are rewards that come with that lost flexibility.  By learning to work in teams and demonstrating how to mentor, lead, collaborate and develop rapport,  your value to the company as an “enabler” enhances your job security.

Life in Industry – One of the biggest differences between life in academia and industry is the emphasis of working on teams. As a result, others rely on your performance and ability to meet deadlines. This interdependence does generally require you to be physically present during the workday, but at the same time, the opportunity for you to demonstrate your ability to meet deadlines and obligations, be accountable and benefit your team members makes you an invaluable part of the organization.

What is culture shock?
What are similarities between academia and industry?
What are differences?
How to prepare for the different cultures?

Videos

Learn to be a “Learner” – One of the biggest differences between academia and industry is that in industry you typically work in teams.  There are external demands that are placed on you., There is less time flexibility. There are others who depend on you.  Learning to shift from “expert” to “learner” is a critical communications skill that will help you establish relationships quickly which will in turn help you integrate and adapt to your new work environment.

Social Intelligence – Fitting into a team environment is one of the best ways to combat the culture shock of starting work in a new company. The art of social intelligence teaches how to shift the focus of your conversation from what is important to you, to what is important to your audience. Successfully learning this skill will help you build your network gain new allies and combat the culture shock we all feel when joining a new organization.

Technical Literacy – Learning to adjust your communications content to the technical level of your audience is a very powerful way to build new productive relationships and enhance your perceived value within an organization. Those relationships in turn will help you integrate and minimize the culture shock of adjusting to a new work environment, while also enhancing your perceived value within the organization.

Life in Industry – Understanding how teams work, how others are dependent on your performance and how you are dependent on theirs will help you integrate more quickly into your new organization.  By doing so, you will be accepted and valued by your colleagues which will go a long way towards combating the culture shock of working in this new environment.

Why do people lose their job?
How can you avoid losing your job?
How can you demonstrate your value to a company?

Videos

Developing Your People – No job is really secure. The way to increase security is to demonstrate your value.  Most companies want you to become independent and manage people by your second year.  Demonstrating your experience and accomplishments in delegation, empathy, enabling others to succeed and establishing rapport increase your value to your hiring manager and the company.

Life in Industry – The way companies succeed is by developing employees who can reliably work in a collaborative team environment, take on personal responsibility, and meet their obligations on time and on budget.  Learn what hiring managers look for, and how to build on your own experiences in order to demonstrate your value to the organization.  If you have these valuable skills, you are more likely to be retained, or even hired by another company if your hiring manager moves on.  All these boost your job security.

Learn to be a “Learner” – Demonstrating your ability to function in a team environment and manage any situation adds to your value.  Emotional Intelligence is all about effective inclusive communications, and learning to shift from “expert” to “learner” is a critical skill.  Demonstrate that ability with accomplishments and you will increase your value and add to your job security.

Social Intelligence – One of the key challenges for scientists is to learn to shift the focus of their conversation from “it’s all about me” to “adding value to whomever you are speaking with”.  This is the essence of social intelligence.  Learning this skill will help develop your reputation as a valued team member in the organization which will enhance your job security.

Building Your Brand – Your value to an organization is the combination of your technical expertise, your ability to execute and “get things done well”, and your ability to work in a team environment. Those three components make up your “brand” identity. You want people with hiring and firing authority to appreciate your brand for all its value in order to enhance your job security

Introduction to Project Management – Demonstrating your familiarity and adherence to principles of project management increases your overall value to the organization. By learning the essentials of project management, and putting them to work in your current position, you will be in a better position to demonstrate those skills immediately in your new job and increase your value, and job security.

What are the options to study or work in the US?
What does it take to get a visa?
What are the differences among visa categories?
Where do I get more information?
How do I improve my chances to get a work visa?

Videos

Social Intelligence – Applying for a visa requires your demonstrating your value to the hiring organization that often must be greater than that of any competing US citizen.  One essential ingredient in making that argument is your ability to express your value in the context of the enhanced social value to your audience. It is more than just your own technical skill.  This is the essence of social intelligence.  Learning this communication skill will help you demonstrate why you will have unique value to the organization.

Building Your Network – Finding a position where you are uniquely qualified can be a significant benefit towards your goal of obtaining a visa to work in the US.  Building your network so that you have as much information available about possible positions, and the skills that make you uniquely qualified can give you a competitive advantage.

Building Your Brand – Obtaining a visa to work in the US requires that you demonstrate your unique value.  In the business world, that value is a combination of your scientific/technical skills as well as your business and social skills.  Developing your brand that combines all three of these identities will be critical in your efforts to demonstrate your unique value to hiring organizations.

Building Your LinkedIn Profile – Your LinkedIn profile is one of the first places hiring managers will go to learn about the skills you offer.  Having a professional and complete LinkedIn profile will help you gain serious consideration as a good candidate for a position.

Is it true that once you leave academia, you can’t go back?
What are the things that will stand in the way of a return?
What are the advantages of going to industry?
If people come back to academia, what positions do they get?

Videos

Creating the Vision – Your value to any organization is enhanced by your ability to convince the hiring manager that you understand their purpose, and share their vision for success.  The key ingredients of strategic thinking, innovation and risk management are all part of understanding your organization’s vision.  That same knowledge can be your ticket back to academia in a leadership role if that is something you choose to do later.

Developing Your People – The longer you are out of academia, the more difficult it will be to return to a PI researcher position.  The more likely academic positions after being out of academia are leadership and director type positions.  Learning to develop teams, mentor and delegate responsibility and successfully lead groups increases your value to academic institutions.

Social Intelligence – Convincing an academic institution to consider hiring you after you have been away from academia requires that you demonstrate your value to their organization.  Social Intelligence is being able to communicate in a fashion that adds value to your audience’s social world rather than focusing on you.  Developing that skill will go a long way towards convincing hiring managers of your potential value to their organization.

Building Your Network – Your network is always going to be your most valuable asset in getting your next job, regardless of whether it is in academia or industry.  Learning how to develop your elevator pitch, initiate conversations with people you don’t know, and build sustaining relationships is a skill that will enhance your ability to learn about new job opportunities and land your next job.

Building Your Brand – Your value to any organization is a combination of your technical skill, your business acumen, and your people skills.  These three components together make up your identity or brand.  Understanding the critical ingredients of your brand, and learning how to develop and market your brand will help you pursue your next position, whether in academia or elsewhere.