If you follow the narratives of the PhD in the mainstream media you can get really depressed. All the reports are so negative on your job prospects. What’s a PhD student to do? Well, some clever people are turning their minds to the problem and this post concerns a new book on the subject.
Normally when I get a book sent to me I review it, or send it out to a student to review. But in this case I asked the writer themselves to write a post as the book is free.
Anna Harrison is a Brisbane-based growth strategist, designer and business consultant who creates pathways to profit for business. She has spent the past two decades consulting selectively to organisations in Australia and the US; maximising their value as they confront change and seek to innovate.
More recently, Anna has completed her own PhD studies, and established successful skills development workshops for businesses and employment transition workshops for university graduates. Anna can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Take it away Anna!
The futility of higher education is a topic that has received much press attention in the last few years.
In 2010, The Economist published a now popular article entitled “The Disposable Academic”. The article described the dissatisfaction and disappointment that many PhD students feel after completing their coveted degree… it painted a picture of brilliant people who, after years of dedication and hard work emerge without the skills to land their dream job.
As the world becomes increasingly complex, a degree alone no longer guarantees career success. The changes in both the academic and industry ecosystems over the last 20 years have affected the mix of skills needed to excel in either environment.
Increasingly, there is an acute need for graduates who are armed not only with domain specific brilliance, but also a range of auxiliary skills.
From Scholar to Dollar provides a practical guide to developing the auxiliary skills needed to make a successful transition from scholar to post degree success.
The book distills two decades of academic, consulting and life experience into a set of 15 simple steps that can be followed by anyone wishing to make a successful transition: whether that be from university to a first career, or changing careers later in life.
In my work coaching corporate teams, I am often asked as to which of the 15 auxiliary skills are the most important…arguably, although the most critical skill is learning to articulate value in the currency of one’s audience… by far the most controversial is number 5: always dress well, look good and take yourself seriously.
From Scholar to Dollar is available free for personal use through iBooks and from the book’s website. I wish you all the best in your personal journey to post degree success… if you enjoy the book, please share it.