Written by: Catherine Sorbara, Ph.D.
By now, it should be obvious to job seekers that networking is essential for success in industry.
This makes most academics roll their eyes.
They hate the idea of it.
From the awkward silences at networking events, to the insincere underpinning of wanting a favor in return.
But academia is not exempt from it.
Researchers network with other researchers.
At conferences, committee meetings, and symposiums.
It is how collaborations are formed, reagents are shared, and grants are renewed.
And it doesn’t just happen with one conversation.
Imagine meeting an academic researcher for the first time, and then the following day being asked if he can use your microscope, which is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.
What if he asked if you could read his thesis?
Submit his grant on your behalf because your supervisor was on the approval committee?
You would probably roll your eyes.
You’d think he was entitled and lazy.
Then why, as a job seeker, would you think complete strangers would be willing to go o...