General Advice--Transferable Skills
As a postdoc, the world is your oyster, as long as you develop the following skills :
- Teamwork. Collaborating effectively with people from other disciplines.
- Communication. Learn to sell your ideas and to convince others in writing and speaking.
- Flexibility. Better be a generalist than a specialist.
- Analytical skills.
- Willingness to take risks, to think outside the box. Get out of your shell. Think innovation.
- Ability to build professional friendships (quality) rather than network superficially (quantity). Keep in touch with your contacts. Relationships are key.
- Basic business skills (using email effectively, running effective meetings, etc.). If needed, audit business-related courses (for example at the Extension School)
- Build your mentorship skills.
Please review the 6 core competencies identified by the NPA (National Postdoc Association).
General Advice--Constructive Strategies
- Be open to, and grab, opportunities to broaden your skills.Be proactive in your search.
- Use alumni connections (especially lab alumni networks).
- Pursue informational interviews.
- During interviews, ask lots of questions (which shows that you're an inquisitive person).
- Temporary jobs are a great way to get a foot in the door.
- Seek jobs that are exciting to you. You're a Harvard postdoc: The world is your oyster.