Takeaways from ASBMB Experimental Biology 2013 Meeting

Report
Takeaways from
ASBMB Experimental
Biology 2013 Meeting
Shivani Garg
May 9, 2013
Seminars, Lectures, Professional
Development
• Professional Development Workshops
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My Individual Development Plan
Postdoc in industry vs. academia
Jobs in industry – Advantages/Disadvantages
Transforming your CV
Ten tough industrial questions and how to handle those
myIDP
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
myIDP helps in setting goals and
realizing them
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Define your goals, and identify
the disconnects
• Define your current career goal
• List how this career path matches your skills/interests/values
• Skills can be – designing/conducting experiments, writing grants,
managing lab
• Interests can be – Plant biology, teaching science, biochemistry,
networking
• Values can be – work-life balance, help environment
• List potential disconnects between your skills/interests/values
and your career goal
• For example –
• Tenure track faculty position but may not have good work-life
balance!
• Post-doc in industry but do not have industry experience!
• Formulate questions based on your disconnects – and do…
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
.. Informational interview
• Can you tell me about your current responsibilities?
• Can you describe your typical day?
• How did you get into this field? What kind of additional
experience or training did you need to get this job?
• What are potential future career opportunities for someone in
your position?
• How would you describe the culture, management style of your
company/institution?
• Can you tell me about the typical compensation packages within
this field – salary range and other benefits?
• Are there professional organizations that I should consider
joining or websites I should be looking at to get more
information?
• Would you recommend someone else to speak with in this field?
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Then define your goals and
choose mentors
• Three types of goals
• Project Goals - Urgent
• Examples – research milestones, attend conferences
• Skills Development Goals
• Learn specific techniques, read, network, communicate
• Career Advancement Goals – Less urgent
• Build your network
• Update your CV/Resume
• Learn about careers
• Identify mentors
• A team of mentors and utilize the strength of each
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Postdoc in industry or academia?
• “Postdoc is never an end in itself, its always a means.”
• Post-doc can be
• To pursue current line of research
• Or to shift to a new area of focus
• Or to facilitate a move into industry or national lab
• For some positions, post-doc is not required
• Ask industry if people do post-docs before applying
• Some helpful websites –
• http://biospace.com – Largest in life sciences
• http://sciencecareers.sciencemag.org/- Best place to start
• http://pathwaystoscience - Diversity
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Postdoc in industry or academia?
“Lots of post-doc positions are NOT advertised.”
Strategies
• Identify potential labs (PIs, post-docs, journals,
conferences)
• Check websites and recent publications
• Contact former and current grad students
• Could make an excel file of potential labs
• Do RESEARCH!
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Postdoc in industry
• Non-bench roles in bio/pharma industry
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Project management
Business development
IP
Technology transfer
Regulatory office
• Not all companies are the same
• Publishing restrictions
• Conferences
• Isolation? Or networking options?
Tough industrial questions
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Post-doc in academia
• Look for a PI who
• Can support your professional career development
• Has a vested interest in helping you find a faculty slot
• Is understanding of other pressures in your life
• Negotiate
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Opportunity to teach
Opportunity to attend conferences
Time for side-projects
Riskiness of your project
Opportunity to co-author grant applications
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Post-doc in industry vs academia
• Disadvantages of post-doc in industry
• Very focused training vs. academia (broader, richer
educational training)
• Publications may not be high impact as in academia
• Hard deadline for post-doc position
• You may not be in the main projects
• What comes after industrial post-docs
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Biotech/pharma company
Government
Research advocacy
Science writing
IP (requires legal training)
Academia (publication record, experience in grant writing)
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Transforming your CV
• Resumes
• One page documents (internships/employment)
• Flexible format
• CV
• Multi-page documents
• Very rigid format
• For faculty positions
• We write Resume/CV combos: 2-3 pages
• Four steps
• Create message
• Design skeleton
• Write descriptive text
Tough industrial questions
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Steps to an effective CV
1. Create message
Have a specific job in mind
Tailor the CV to the job you are applying for, and communicate
a. Academic training
b. Professional skills
Desire and motivation are conveyed through cover letters
2. Design section headings
Traditionally, people start chronologically. That is
presenting data, and NOT making an argument.
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Steps to an effective CV
Designing section headings tailored to a job. For example,
some section headings
1. Qualification Summary
2. Research Experience
- Protein Research Experience
- NMR Research Experience
3. Teaching/mentorship Experience
4. Project Management Experience
5. Industry Experience
6. Education
7. Awards
8. Publications
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Steps to an effective CV
3. Descriptive Text
- Projects
- Range of responsibilities
- Outcomes
Samples available at careers.ucsf.edu
Other helpful tips
Qualification Summary – Use the same language as is present
in the job description!
- Computers pick key-words
- HR people may not be scientists
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Cover letters
• When do employers read cover letters and
• What are they looking for when they do?
Cover-letters are tie-breakers.
Employers read CV first, then cover letters.
Cover-letters are writing samples. Well organized cover letters
focus on summarizing outcomes of your
- Academic training
- Professional skill
And stating your
- Desire
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Format for cover letter
1. Summary – addresses ‘Why are you a good candidate for this
job?”
Makes an argument.
2. Academic Training
3. Professional Skills
4. Desire – Tell them about why you started this field of research,
why do you welcome the change?
Why do you want the job (beyond the location/salary)?
What is most rewarding to you?
People just give data, make no argument!
Cover-letter should not focus on how the job helps you, but how
you help the employer!
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Ten tough industrial questions
Why are you interested in industry?
Purpose – To see your motivation, interest
Good response – I’ve had X years in a great academic year. I’m
now ready for my next challenge and know that I want to be
in an industrial setting. I’ll have a chance to use my technical
skills and that projects will change quickly. I’ve already made
the decision to leave academics and I’d like to begin my
industrial career with you.
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Ten tough industrial questions
Where do you see yourself in next five years?
Purpose – sense of your commitment, geography. Will you
stick around?
Good response – I am confident that your company will grow
in next five years, and I hope to be part of that growth over
the years. I’m confident that if I do a good job, new and
exciting opportunities will open up to me here. I’m excited
about that, but also excited about the position I’m
interviewing for.
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Ten tough industrial questions
What is your greatest strength?
Purpose – to identify attributes that will qualify and
distinguish you for this specific job.
Prepare – by gauging what seems to be a critical nontechnical component of the job.
Good response – I pride myself on my ability and reputation
to be a good writer, organized, great team player. For e.g. –
recently, I was in a situation where I had to….
This attribute coupled with my strong technical attributes
will hopefully make me a strong candidate for this position.
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Ten tough industrial questions
What is your greatest weakness?
Purpose – can you be objective and open about yourself? Will
you learn as you grow and be open to criticism?
Pretty Good response – Acknowledge the weakness and steps
you are taking to improve it.
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Ten tough industrial questions
Tell me about one conflict that you may have had with your
boss and how did you resolve it?
Purpose – how do you handle opposition?
Pretty Good response – Haven’t had a major conflict. I did
have a difference of opinion once when ….
We resolved it by…
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Ten tough industrial questions
What is your biggest professional achievement?
Purpose – how you tackled something big?
Prepare – Key is to give a clear, concise example of a major
project.
Pretty Good response – Recount the situation
- your role
- challenges you faced, how you overcame those
- creative steps you took
- reveal the positive outcome
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Ten tough industrial questions
What sort of positions are you applying for?
Purpose – Determine consistency in your message
Pretty Good response – I’ve thought a lot about my next job,
talked to a lot of people that are in the same role, and know
that this is exactly what I want to do. If, for some reason, I’m
unable to secure such a role, I will explore positions such as
… (something related to your current position).
myIDP
Post-doc in industry/academia
Transforming your CV
Tough industrial questions
Ten tough industrial questions
Do you have any questions for me/us?
Purpose – Determine preparedness for interview, your
interest in company beyond salary.
Good response – Position was very clearly defined today and
I’m excited about the company, the people I met and my
ability to do job well. I did see something on the company
website that mentioned that you may be moving into some
new therapeutics area. Is that something you are at liberty to
discuss?
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
WORKSHOP CONDUCTORS AT ASBMB

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