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Jeanette McConnell, PhD
Jeanette McConnell, PhD

Jeanette is a chemistry PhD turned science communication enthusiast. During her PhD she realized that her favorite part about research wasn’t actually doing research, but rather talking and writing about it. So, she has channeled her passion for discovery into teaching and writing about science. When she isn’t talking someone’s ear off about her latest scientific obsession, you’ll find her on the soccer field or reading a good sci-fi novel.

Articles Written By Jeanette McConnell, PhD

5 Common Phrases PhDs Say That Will Ruin Informational Interviews

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

You know that you need to network. You’ve heard of informational interviews and want to try them out. But what if you say the wrong thing? What if you put in all this time meeting someone, talking to them, following up with them and the connection leads to nothing? Here are 5 things that you should not say while networking at an informational interview.

How To Ditch Your Imposter Syndrome And Negotiate The Pay You Are Worth As A PhD

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

Many companies want to pay you as little as possible.This doesn’t mean they don’t value you, but a company is always focused on the bottom line and every dollar spent is an investment. According to a report by Robert Half, 70% of hiring managers do not expect the job candidate to take the first salary offer. They expect you to negotiate. So that means they are offering you less than what is possible. The same survey found that 55% of candidates are negotiating their salary. Are you? The market is currently a candidate driven market, meaning that according to the…

This Resume Format Gets PhDs Hired - 5 Steps To Writing A Functional Resume

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

According to LinkedIn there are 25 hard and 5 soft skills that employers are really looking for in candidates this year. These in demand skills are what hiring managers will be looking for on your resume. It doesn’t matter if you gained that skill as a postdoc or as a graduate student, that is not the important part. The important part is your skill - and that’s why a functional resume is a great option for PhDs transitioning out of academia. Additionally, the functional resume is great for getting past Applicant Tracking Software (ATS). Jobscan reported that 98% of Fortune…

Foolproof Networking Guide For PhDs Who Have No Idea Where To Start (... or How To Start)

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

You cannot ignore the social component of hiring. If a hiring manager or recruiter already knows someone who is a great fit for a new job opening, why would they waste time looking for someone else? They won’t. They will hire the person they know, and you would never have even known that a position was open. Many jobs (up to 85% according to some reports) are never advertised because they are filled by networking. So you are only aware of 15% of the available job openings if you don’t network.

5 Science Communication Careers For PhDs Who Enjoy Talking And Writing About Science

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

All of the major tech, biopharma, or medical companies need science communicators. All of the major news outlets need science communicators. All museums and education institutions need science communicators. There are many ways that you can use your STEM PhD and your passion for writing in an industry career. Here are 5 science communication careers for PhDs who enjoy talking and writing about science.

15 Industry Positions STEM PhDs Are Being Hired Into Right Now

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

The biotech and biopharma industry is growing rapidly. ContractPharma reported that the biotechnology market was valued at $330 billion in 2015 and is expected to more than double by 2024 to $775 billion. With that incredibly rapid growth comes massive and fast change. New technologies and innovations create an atmosphere of constant change and industry needs employees who can thrive under these conditions. They need leaders.They need PhDs. According to a study published in PLOS One, a few of the most valuable transferable skills that PhDs have are the ability to gather and interpret information and the ability to learn…

Industry Is More Than Just Big Pharma - Learn What Types Of Companies Are Hiring PhDs

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

An article published in the Scientist reported that only around 15% of US postdocs secure tenure-track jobs and that the unemployment rate for postdocs is increasing. Lack of opportunity and low pay have made PhDs realize that there is so much more available to them outside of the ivory tower. And, PhDs in these industry positions are happy with their careers. Recently, Nature published a large-scale survey that examined the salaries and job satisfaction levels for PhDs and MSc holders. Overall, the survey showed that respondents were satisfied with their industry careers across the different types of organizations in industry.…

Your PhD Is Not Enough - 7 Articles To Increase Your Business Acumen And Get Hired In Industry

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

Your technical skills as a PhD might get you in the door for an interview or a phone screen, but it’s not enough to get you hired. To be the one candidate who gets hired, you must have a solid understanding of business. Business intelligence was on the top 20 list of in-demand skills (LinkedIn). When companies have a pool of talented job candidates, having a solid understanding of business can make you the top candidate. 41% of Chief Human Resources Officers cited business acumen as the most lacking skill when sourcing new talent (Consultancy UK). And, 65% of business…

Learn These 5 Basic MBA Concepts To Get Hired In Industry As A PhD

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

Companies want to hire PhDs. Some of the most highly sought after skills are things that PhDs excel at. PhDs are highly competent in a range of important industry-relevant skills, including ability to gather and interpret information, the ability to analyze data, ability to solve problems, ability to learn quickly, creativity/innovative thinking (PLOSone). Having these skills is a major advantage. But, the study wasn’t all positive. It also showed that PhDs are lacking in some of the key skills required to move into industry, especially at the management level. The skills gaps included: the ability to set a vision and…

5 Things You’ll Have The Time And Money For After You Transition Into Industry

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

In this Q&A Evguenia Alechine, PhD discusses what she does as a scientific editor and how this position is meaningful to her. She also discusses how transitioning into industry brought out her management skills and allowed her to develop her strengths even further.

I Was Rejected For Fidgeting In Interviews But These 5 Body Language Hacks Changed Everything

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

Humans can produce more than 250,000 postures and more than 1,000 facial expressions (Axtell 1991). So, you want to make sure you are choosing postures in your interview which convey that you are the best candidate for the position because, when it comes to your body language, interviewers can be harsh. If you are slouching, fidgeting, playing with your hair, looking around or conducting any other inappropriate behavior, you can kiss the job opportunity goodbye. Poor body language is often a reason that candidates are rejected, where 67% of interviewers reported rejecting a candidate because they lacked eye contact and…

My First Interview Phone Screen Was At 1AM My Time. Here’s What Happened.

By: Jeanette McConnell, PhD

While a phone interview may not seem as important as an in-person interview, very few people actually make it to this stage. 98% of candidates are eliminated by the initial resume screen (Workopolis). If you have earned a phone interview, it means you are in the top pool of candidates. Now, it’s up to you to prove that you deserve to move on to the next step. 49% of interviewers know within 5 minutes if a candidate is a good fit, and only 8% needed longer than 30 minutes to make this judgement (Careerbuilder). So, as soon as your phone…