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Author Topic: How to prepare for industrial job as a postdoc??  (Read 2437 times)

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OLED2550

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How to prepare for industrial job as a postdoc??
« on: July 15, 2018, 02:20:08 PM »

Hi Guys

I am an early postdoc (~9 months). My PhD is about OLED and my current project is about silicone polymers. Both of which are highly related to industry. I have three patents (all during PhD).

1. What do you think about my odds of getting a job in industry?

2. What should I do to increase my odds of getting a job in industry?

3. What kind of project should I work on to attract industry employers?

PS: I do not give up academia career path. I just wanna have a two-hand preparation
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hypervalent_iodine

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Re: How to prepare for industrial job as a postdoc??
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2018, 05:45:49 PM »

Do you have any first author papers? I can't give much advice as I am only just getting to the point of applying for post docs myself, but one thing I was told by someone in industry was to make sure you have post-doc or other lab experience outside of what you did your PhD in. I am not sure hoe general that advice is to industry positions, but I am sure someone else here could comment.
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wildfyr

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Re: How to prepare for industrial job as a postdoc??
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2018, 06:48:14 PM »

You'll be fine. The PhD says you can learn new skills and at synthesize complex data. Expertise in a precise field is not necessary, but helpful.

There's a million billion science skills to learn, it's shooting in the dark. Much better odds to improve ordinary ones like buffing your resume, interviewing well, networking, that crap everyone needs.
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OLED2550

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Re: How to prepare for industrial job as a postdoc??
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2018, 08:05:00 PM »

Do you have any first author papers? I can't give much advice as I am only just getting to the point of applying for post docs myself, but one thing I was told by someone in industry was to make sure you have post-doc or other lab experience outside of what you did your PhD in. I am not sure hoe general that advice is to industry positions, but I am sure someone else here could comment.

Yes, I have eight at the moment. If you have queries about applying postdoc, maybe I can offer you some advices.

Learning something new other than those in your PhD works for academic career path too.
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Arkcon

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Re: How to prepare for industrial job as a postdoc??
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2018, 12:32:32 AM »

Yes, I have eight at the moment. If you have queries about applying postdoc, maybe I can offer you some advices.

Learning something new other than those in your PhD works for academic career path too.

You shouldn't be worrying with 3 patents and eight papers.  Whoever you worked with on those will be glad to have you as part of their team, if only to prevent you from taking your knowledge to a competitor.

Spend your time vetting them, their projects, and their dedication to you -- how big are their projects, how secure is their direction, how big of a group are you going to be asked to manage, is their research funding secure.  The answers to these questions are all on you, now.
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Hey, I'm not judging.  I just like to shoot straight.  I'm a man of science.

Enthalpy

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Re: How to prepare for industrial job as a postdoc??
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2018, 08:28:35 AM »

I have no experience in chemistry, but maybe some general ideas about industry apply?

Presently Oleds are fashionable, but nobody on Earth can predict for how long. Maybe we'll see them everywhere, maybe they'll disappear quickly. Even if they succeed, at some point the industry will consider research as ended, and in some future an other technology, which we can't foresee, will replace them. Think at the Cdrom for instance: huge research effort first, then some companies (but not all) made good money with them, and meanwhile they're disappearing, replaced by Usb stick and other supports that we couldn't imagine back then.

So don't imagine a career in the research for Oled. At some unpredictable point, you'll have to do something else.

Neither can we predict which company in which country will live from Oleds, if any. 30 years ago, clever future predictors told "Europeans shall make silicon because of its brain value, and buy machines from low labour cost Chinese". Presently, the French sell cheese to the Chinese, the Germans and Swiss sell them machines, and all buy the silicon chips from China.

So my suggestion would be: make Oleds right now if you like it, but be ready to do something else as the wind turns. Try to be as multi-purpose as a Swiss army knife, within chemistry and possibly outside. And learn foreign languages.
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OLED2550

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Re: How to prepare for industrial job as a postdoc??
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2018, 08:59:23 AM »

I have no experience in chemistry, but maybe some general ideas about industry apply?

Presently Oleds are fashionable, but nobody on Earth can predict for how long. Maybe we'll see them everywhere, maybe they'll disappear quickly. Even if they succeed, at some point the industry will consider research as ended, and in some future an other technology, which we can't foresee, will replace them. Think at the Cdrom for instance: huge research effort first, then some companies (but not all) made good money with them, and meanwhile they're disappearing, replaced by Usb stick and other supports that we couldn't imagine back then.

So don't imagine a career in the research for Oled. At some unpredictable point, you'll have to do something else.

Neither can we predict which company in which country will live from Oleds, if any. 30 years ago, clever future predictors told "Europeans shall make silicon because of its brain value, and buy machines from low labour cost Chinese". Presently, the French sell cheese to the Chinese, the Germans and Swiss sell them machines, and all buy the silicon chips from China.

So my suggestion would be: make Oleds right now if you like it, but be ready to do something else as the wind turns. Try to be as multi-purpose as a Swiss army knife, within chemistry and possibly outside. And learn foreign languages.

What an insightful and experienced response!

I do learn a lot. Many thanks!
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