Hosted By

Isaiah Hankel, PhD
Isaiah Hankel, PhD
Chief Executive Officer Cheeky Scientist

Join us as we talk about…

In this week’s episode…

  • You will uncover the importance of highlighting soft skills, such as work ethic, resilience, and passion for the company’s mission, in addition to technical qualifications
  • You will explore the influence of effectively communicating skills during the job search, focusing on showcasing rigorous training in research and analysis, analytical abilities, time management, and organizational skills
  • Finally you will recognize the importance of a deadline driven work ethic and perseverance gained through the challenges of earning a PhD

“I just can’t seem to get hired Isaiah, even for jobs where I have all the skills.” This is something I hear often. But I also hear, “Isaiah, I don’t have all the skills and I don’t have experience, so I’ll never get hired.” Yet, these 2 classes of PhDs continue to get hired in industry every single day, regardless of how their skills match. How is that possible?

Well, eventually these PhDs stop obsessing over their skills and start focusing on mastering the job search process and mastering how to communicate other key skills. In particular, when PhDs lean into communicating how productive they are, how strong their work ethic is, how quickly they can learn on the job, how they’ll never stop in the face of failure, and how passionate they are about the cause of a company, they get hired.

In today’s competitive job market, PhDs stand out not just for their specialized knowledge, but also for their exceptional work ethic and productivity. So let’s explore how you can communicate yours.

First, make sure you’re showcasing your Rigorous Training in Research and Analysis. Talk about your ability to Deep Dive into Complex Problems. Remember, PhD programs require students to delve into complex problems, often requiring years of dedicated research. This intense focus cultivates an ability to work deeply on challenging tasks without losing momentum or focus.

Second, communicate the skills you have in Analysis and Problem-Solving: Your rigorous academic training has honed your analytical skills, enabling you to dissect problems efficiently and devise effective solutions quickly.

Third, be sure to mention your exceptional Time Management and Organization Skills. As a PhD, you have the ability to Juggle Multiple Responsibilities. PhDs often balance research, experiments, documentation, meetings, writing papers and grants, teaching, and their own studies. This juggling act fosters exceptional time management and organizational skills.

Fourth, PhDs have what I call is Deadline-Driven Work Ethic: The nature of PhD programs, with their strict deadlines for publications, conferences, and thesis submission, instills a disciplined work ethic. Most people do not deal with any strict deadlines. Seriously. Don’t just assume that your daily experience is the same as other non-PhDs. It’s not. PhDs learn to work effectively under pressure and manage their time to meet stringent deadlines.

Fifth and finally, discuss your Resilience and Perseverance with employers. As a PhD, you have a high level of Adaptability to Challenges: The path to earning a PhD is filled with obstacles, from securing funding to conducting original research. This experience teaches PhDs to be resilient and adaptable, qualities that translate to high productivity in the workplace. On top of this, completing a PhD takes years of sustained effort, demonstrating a level of perseverance and commitment that is rare.

This long-term focus enables PhDs to tackle large volumes of work with a consistent and persistent approach. Employers looking for candidates who can deliver high-quality work quickly and consistently would do well to consider the powerhouse of productivity that PhD graduates represent

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