Industry Transition Spotlight: Aparna Lakshmanan, PhD

Transcript excerpt from an interview with Aparna Lakshmanan, Ph.D.

Isaiah: Maybe you could start by introducing yourself and the company and position that you’re working at now.

Aparna: My name is Aparna Lakshmanan and I work as a regulatory submission writer at Novartis, India, in global drug development, oncology regulatory submission and writing.

Isaiah: What were some of the challenges you were facing in your job search?

Aparna: Due to my PhD, just like most people, I did have some of the low points in my life and I found I was becoming one-dimensional. I used to be a very well-studied person before. I was very one-dimensional by the end of my PhD.

I knew that I did not want to stay in academia.

And, at that time, I was applying for some positions online but was not getting the job offers. I knew that I needed some help to be able to transition into industry. I was looking online for different resources and attending different seminars at the University.

And then, I found Cheeky. I started reading some of the articles and started looking over some of your webinars and the details of information within them were unprecedented. I thought, okay this will be useful.

Soon after I started my postdoc, the next enrollment period started within a few months. And, I was like, “Okay, I’m going to join”. It’s been very good. So that was my journey.

Isaiah: What were some initial ah-hah moments that you had, some things that helped you right away or that really impressed you?

Aparna: Right, so the first one was networking.  And of course, even in other resources, they do talk about networking and they emphasize it, but the level of detail about how to network was more in-depth in CSA.

For example, earlier when I used to go to conferences, I would sit in on a lot of talks, but later I realized that, okay, you have to spend time in booths. But even then, even if you spend time in booths, you need to know how to approach the people there properly.

CSA taught me that you need to be genuinely interested in the company’s product portfolio, and talk to people, and then develop that relationship and get the right contacts. So, that was really an ah-hah moment.

Isaiah: How did the private group help you?

Aparna: That was one of the best parts of joining CSA. The lifetime access to such a set of associates and the camaraderie is amazing.

You don’t have to feel like you might be judged on any question. You could ask them any small, silly question.

So, there was that level of comfort of being in a group of sharing and asking, and there would be a lot of people who would genuinely support you, encourage you, and give valuable feedback on anything throughout the process.

Isaiah: Congratulations again on the job at Novartis. We really, really are looking forward to watching your continued career success, Aparna. Thank you.

Aparna: Thank you, thank you very much, Isaiah, and to all the admins and associates of CSA. I am very grateful, thank you very much.

Watch the video to hear Aparna’s complete transition story.

To learn more about how you can transition into an industry career, like Aparna, including instant access to our exclusive training videos, case studies, industry insider documents, transition plan, and private online network, get on the wait list for the Cheeky Scientist Association.

Join Cheeky Scientist Association
Get Free Job Search Content Weekly
Isaiah Hankel, PhD
Isaiah Hankel, PhD Chief Executive Officer at Cheeky Scientist

Isaiah Hankel holds a PhD in Anatomy and Cell Biology. An expert in the biotechnology industry, he specializes in helping other PhDs transition into cutting-edge industry career tracks.

Isaiah believes--from personal experience--that if you feel stuck somewhere in your life, it’s a clear sign that you need to make a change. Don’t sit still and wait for the world to tell you what to do. Start a new project. Build your own business. Take action. Experimentation is the best teacher.

Isaiah is an internationally recognized Fortune 500 consultant, CEO of Cheeky Scientist, and author of the straight-talk bestsellers Black Hole Focus and The Science of Intelligent Achievement.

Similar Articles

Industry Transition Spotlight: Sarah Yunes, PhD, Medical Writer

Industry Transition Spotlight: Sarah Yunes, PhD, Medical Writer

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview With Sarah Yunes, PhD, Medical Writer 1. What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for? I’m Sarah Yunes, and I am a Medical Writer for Argenx. 2. What is your favorite part about working in industry? It’s a very supportive work environment. My manager is supportive, helpful, and honest. The team I work with is friendly and we’re able to collaborate really well together. 3. What does a typical day at work look like for you? Many of my colleagues work in Belgium, so most of my…

Industry Transition Spotlight: Ester Boix Garriga, PhD, Area Sales Manager

Industry Transition Spotlight: Ester Boix Garriga, PhD, Area Sales Manager

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview With Ester Boix Garriga, PhD, Area Sales Manager 1. What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for? My name is Ester Boix and I am currently an Area Sales Manager at Infinitec, in Barcelona, Spain. 2. What is your favorite part about working in industry? In this specific role, I have the chance of having a very good manager and being part of a very nice team, with a good atmosphere in terms of personal relationships. I feel listened to, valued, and that there is space for…

Industry Transition Spotlight: Asjad Ali, PhD, Agricultural Scientist

Industry Transition Spotlight: Asjad Ali, PhD, Agricultural Scientist

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview With Asjad Ali, PhD, Agricultural Scientist 1. What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for? Asjad Ali, Plant Breeder/Agricultural Scientist, Department of Agriculture & Fisheries – AustraliaCompany: Sygnature Discovery 2. What is your favorite part about working in industry? It’s a very good work-life balance as well as office-field activities balance with more independence in conducting experiments. My job requires me to go to the field station and work on plants to develop new hybrids and I really enjoy doing that. 3. What does a typical day…

Industry Transition Spotlight: Satrajit Chakrabarty

Industry Transition Spotlight: Satrajit Chakrabarty

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview with Satrajit Chakrabarty, PhD, Data Scientist 1. What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for? My name is Satrajit Chakrabarty. I work as a Data Scientist at a Swiss telecommunication company called UPC. 2. What is your favorite part about working in industry? My favorite part of working in industry at my current company is the team. I am part of the Advanced Analytics team in the company. The team consists of like-minded, motivated people who like taking on challenges that in the end enables the company…

Industry Transition Spotlight: Gad Sabbatier

Industry Transition Spotlight: Gad Sabbatier

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview with Gad Sabbatier, PhD, Project Leader in Innovation and Business Development  1. What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for? Gad Sabbatier, Project Leader in Innovation and Business Development, SOVAR. It is a mandated technology transfer office. 2. What is your favorite part about working in industry? I really love the team spirit in the company. I have a lot of autonomy and I am learning a lot. I really enjoy the work-life balance as well. 3. What does a typical day at work look like for…

Industry Transition Spotlight: Deep S Bhattacharya, PhD

Industry Transition Spotlight: Deep S Bhattacharya, PhD

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview with Deep S Bhattacharya, PhD, Senior Scientist Formulation and Process Development 1. What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for? Deep S Bhattacharya, Senior Scientist Formulation and Process Development, Pfizer. 2. What is your favorite part about working in industry? I am intrigued to see my efforts making an impact on patients’ lives. The therapies that I am currently working on, looking at the bigger picture, and understanding how valued scientists are in the industry is incredible. 3. What does a typical day at work look like…

Industry Transition Spotlight: Manish Pareek

Industry Transition Spotlight: Manish Pareek

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview with Manish Pareek, PhD, Senior Scientist 1. What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for? Name: Manish Pareek Job title: Senior Scientist Company: Sygnature Discovery 2. What is your favorite part about working in industry? My favorite part is being able to learn the steps involved in drug discovery through different drug discovery projects. Life in academia was ok, but in industry, I am able to collaborate more with other teams. I am learning more about biology as well. Work-life balance is much better than my previous…

Industry Transition Spotlight: Julie Dela Cruz-Mulders, PhD

Industry Transition Spotlight: Julie Dela Cruz-Mulders, PhD

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview with Julie Dela Cruz-Mulders, PhD, Medical Science Liaison What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for?    Julie Dela Cruz-Mulders – Medical Science Liaison, Dermatology – Eli Lilly What is your favorite part about working in industry?  Collaborating with all my teammates and the flexibility of this job. I am responsible for my own schedule, for the most part What does a typical day at work look like for you?    That’s the great thing about this job: It is never boring. I don’t really have a typical day,…

Industry Transition Spotlight: Rachel Reichman, PhD

Industry Transition Spotlight: Rachel Reichman, PhD

By: Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Industry Transition: An interview with Rachel Reichman, PhD, Business Analyst What is your name, your full job title, and the name of the company you work for?    Rachel Reichman, Business Analyst, Lifescience Dynamics What is your favorite part about working in industry?  I really like interacting with a wide variety of people and clients and having multiple projects that span completely different disease areas. I like learning and becoming an expert on multiple diseases and therapy areas. I like watching how treatment options for patients change over time. What does a typical day at work look like for you?    I…

Top Industry Career eBooks

Complete LinkedIn Guide For PhDs

Complete LinkedIn Guide For PhDs

Isaiah Hankel

The LinkedIn tips & strategies within have helped PhDs from every background get hired into top industry careers.

20 Most Popular Industry Career Tracks For PhDs

20 Most Popular Industry Career Tracks For PhDs

Isaiah Hankel, PhD & Arunodoy Sur, PhD

Learn about the top 20 industry careers for PhDs (regardless of your academic background). In this eBook, you will gain insight into the most popular, highest-paying jobs for PhDs – all of which will allow you to do meaningful work AND get paid well for it.

Industry Resume Guide for PhDs

Industry Resume Guide for PhDs

Isaiah Hankel, PhD

Learn how to craft the perfect industry resume to attract employers. In this eBook for PhDs, you will get access to proven resume templates, learn how to structure your bullet points, and discover which keywords industry employers want to see most on PhD resumes.