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Personal, Professional

Because she made the transition herself, Wandering Scientist knows what is it like to move from academia to industry. At her blog, Wand Sci shares some transition tips from her own experience.

First, she says, it's important to separate one's work computing from personal computing. Because at most private companies "you have no expectation of privacy in your work email," Wand Sci suggests opening up a separate account for personal use. Further, she adds, "a lot of companies provide their employees with laptops, and some people then treat those laptops as their own. They are not." Because of this, Wand Sci suggests investing in a separate computer for personal use.

Those making the move to industry, she says, ought to "expect a lot more meetings," and an increased emphasis on deadlines, particularly at startups. "Startup companies have a limited runway," Wand Sci says. "They need their projects to follow timelines, because if they run out of money before the project finishes, they fail."

In a comment to this post, reader Shandra adds that, in industry, "getting along with people is as important as being smart," and that product is generally valued over process. Because of this, Shandra says, it's important to ask for help when it is needed.

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