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3 Interview Preparation Tips For PhDs Applying For Biotech Or Biopharma Industry Jobs

To ace an industry interview, you must not only know what to do during an interview, but also what NOT to do.

Any PhD can craft a successful industry resume. But not every PhD can show up to an interview, make a great first impression, and get a job offer. Too many PhDs blow their first interview by not taking it seriously. The worst thing you can do during a job search is work hard for months (not to mention the years it took to get your PhD) and then mess it all up in the first 90 seconds of meeting an employer. A better strategy is to prepare strenuously for every interview and express yourself exceptionally well during those first few minutes. Here’s what NOT to do during an industry job interview.

Best Industry Transition Articles Of The Week For PhDs (August 30, 2015)

Every week we scour the Internet to find the best industry transition articles for PhDs, so you don’t have to. We have two consultants independently search for the most informative articles on networking, CVs/resumes, transferable skills, interviews, academic blues, and industry positions. Our consultants vote on a top article for each category and for a top overall article each week. This week’s best articles are… Top Overall *How Postdocs Can Maximize Their Career Chances In A Competitive World* – Belinda Lee Huang, PhD Networking *TOP* 25 Tips to Be A LinkedIn Speed User – Donna Svei What Your Job Search Need Is…

7 Things Expert Networkers Never Do When Getting Job Referrals At PhD Networking Events

When it comes to getting an industry job, your network is more valuable than your PhD.

Too many PhDs completely ignore the development of their interpersonal skills. As a result, these PhDs act atrociously at networking events. Instead of building strong connections, they repel and annoy industry professionals. These rude PhDS talk incessantly about themselves, interrupt others, talk in condescending tones, and come off as awkward, insecure, and disrespectful. If you ever want a job in industry, you must start networking as if you are already a successful industry professional. You must stop misbehaving at networking events. Here are 7 things successful industry PhDs never do at networking events.

Best Industry Transition Articles Of The Week For PhDs (August 23, 2015)

Every week we scour the Internet to find the best industry transition articles for PhDs, so you don’t have to. We have two consultants independently search for the most informative articles on networking, CVs/resumes, transferable skills, interviews, academic blues, and industry positions. Our consultants vote on a top article for each category and for a top overall article each week. This week’s best articles are… Top Overall *The Recruiter Said “You’ve Got 20 Minutes – Impress Me!”* – Liz Ryan Networking *TOP* Networking … What I Wish I Knew Then – Kristen Wall Five Ways To Stop Embarrassing Yourself On LinkedIn…

Top 7 List Of Ways PhDs Can Develop Transferable Job Skills While Working In The Lab

Technical skills are not enough to get you hired in industry.

You need additional, transferable skills to get hired. You need to develop knowledge and expertise beyond scientific research to set yourself apart from the competition. Most PhDs fail to develop the transferable skills they need to get an industry job. Instead, they make excuses like being too busy in the lab or being under too much pressure from their academic advisor. The truth is there are many ways to learn and nurture transferable skills while still in the lab. The key is that these skills are best learned first-hand, not by reading books. If you want a job in industry, you must find time to engage in activities that will help you identify and leverage the non-academic skills you need quickly. Here are 7 ways to develop transferable skills for industry while still working in the lab.

I was looking for an industry job for over a year without any luck. Now, I’m a Medical Science Liaison for a top pharmaceutical company. What happened? I joined the Cheeky Scientist Association. After joining, I was really impressed with quality of the private group. The amount of support and high-level insights were invaluable to me. I was able to have in depth conversations with other Associates, learning from the resumes they shared and the networking and interviewing experiences they had. I also got to attend live webinars and workshops with top MSLs and other industry professionals. After making a few key changes to my own resume, interview presentation style, and networking strategy, I was suddenly hired. It all happened very quickly after I got my strategy in place. I couldn’t be happier now. I’m finally have the career and life I’ve always wanted.

Nikolett Biel
Nikolett Biel, Ph.D.

At the beginning of my graduate studies I already knew that I did not want to stay in academia. I was always drawn to industry because I felt like that’s where I could have the most impact in patients’ lives. When it came time to make the transition I was lost, clueless and frustrated with the lack of responses to submitted resumes. I have followed blogs from the Cheeky Scientist for quite some time and have always found them useful and empowering. I decided to join the Cheeky Scientist Association when I hit a very frustrating low point in my job search and it was the best decision I could have made both personally and professionally! I took every step of the transition plan very seriously and within 2 weeks I gained tremendous knowledge on resume building, interviewing, contacting hiring managers, successfully reaching out to strangers on LinkedIn and gained fantastic self confidence. The Association’s private group has been the most amazing group I’ve ever had the pleasure of belonging to; the amount of support and help between associates is fantastic! I recently landed my dream job at Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. as a Drug Evaluation Research Scientist and I know it would not have been possible without the Association! If you are interested in a career in industry, joining the Association is a must! Do not waste any more time!

The Cheeky Scientist Association took me from being very unsure on how to approach my job search to getting a industry position above the one I interviewed for and a correspondingly much bigger salary package. Trust me, the program is worth every penny. The Association takes you through the broad strokes of networking and designing a job search strategy to concrete practical tips like inserting the right result in the right place on your resume and saying “any reasonable offer will be considered” when asked how much you expect to earn during an interview. The resume workshop in particular was a game-changer. The only people that shouldn’t join this programs are PhDs who want to keep procrastinating and making excuses for why they are still stuck in academia.

Karin Weigelt, Ph.D
Karin Weigelt, Ph.D.

Prior to joining the Association, I was a post-doc and working in a lab just like I had been for the last several years. Though I love science I realized that academia was not for me. Since budgets are cut more and more a lot of labs turn into an environment full of fear and jealousy where publications are “produced” under high pressure which has nothing to do with the innovative cool science I would have wanted to be doing. I wanted to move on and do something new but at first I felt stuck and felt like I didn’t have any job options or good connections. I realized I needed to change strategies and joined the Association. Since becoming a Cheeky Scientist Associate, I’ve been on several interviews and have had numerous recruiters contact me. I recently got the industry job of my dreams and I’m still having recruiters contact me. The Cheeky Scientist Association continues to keep me one step ahead in my industry career. I really enjoy interacting with the private online groups and know that I can ask questions and get support whenever I need it. The Association is a great resource for any postdoc, PhD, or Phd student.


The Cheeky Scientist Association completely changed my career and life. Before joining the Association, I was doing a postdoc face-to-face with a dead end. There was no future for me in academia and I had no idea how to do anything else. I knew there were non-academic jobs in the world but I didn’t know how to find them, let alone how to apply to them or get hired. I tried doing things on my own for a long time but kept coming up short. I was too busy and too stressed. This all changed when I joined the Association. I couldn’t believe how much value I received from the program right away. The bimonthly webinars were incredible. The resume and CV training modules made an unbelievable difference. I went from being ignored to having hiring managers and recruiters reaching out to me. Yes, reaching out to me! The best part was the Association’s group was there supporting me every step of the way. I have never, ever seen such a positive group of PhDs together in one place all willing to help each other. Whenever I had a question, it would get answered by 10 people who knew what they were talking about the very same day. As a result of joining the Cheeky Scientist Association, I got called into interviews with companies like Roche and Estée Lauder and ended up having my pick of jobs! Now, I’m a Senior Scientist at Estée Lauder Companies. I couldn’t be happier. If you’re considering a job in industry, join the Association now.