May 1, 2024

Make the Leap

Are you in academia and want to make the leap to industry? Or maybe you’re in industry and ready for a new role? Let’s discuss how to make that leap!

Whether you’re joining industry for the first time or jumping to a new firm, here are some ideas to consider:

Where are you now:

1.       Set aside some time to put some thoughts to paper.

2.       What functional skills (and accomplishments) do you possess that you can market to other firms?

3.     Think about your skills from your current role that are transferrable across industries (e.g. project management, data analysis, research skills, ability to learn new things, etc.)

3.       Really think about what you do on a daily basis that will be great marketing points in a job search.

4.       Some tips:

a.       Make a list of your daily tasks in your current role.

b.      From that list, find your sweet spot (your ikigai) – that is, the intersection of what you like to do, what you’re good at, and what’s in demand (where you can get paid to do that). You can have several of these, including specific experimental and computational skills, collaborative skills, people and project management, etc.

c.       Make a list of your accomplishments in your current role.

Where do you want to go:

1.       Do research and identify relevant roles and companies in your field. (This can be done by exploring publications, researching company webpages and presentations, LinkedIn profiles, etc).

2.       Draft a 30 second “elevator pitch” that clearly states what you’re looking for. (You may want to include specifics like what city you want to live in, what functional tasks you want to do, and what size company you want to work for.) No one can help you if you have a general ask, but everyone can help if you’re specific and clear about what you want.

How to get from where you are now to where you want to be:

1.       Understand the requirements in your desired role.

2.       Be able to connect the dots between what is desired in this new position and how your experience is applicable.

3.       Ask thoughtful and relevant questions to the hiring manager.

4.       Be aware of what is happening in industry to be able to sell your strengths in this new environment.

5.       It is the person who can translate their current skill set to what is required in a new role who will be successful in making that leap.

Try not to overthink it :blush: The more you try, the more opportunities you will have.

Enjoy the adventure!