Social science PhD looking to transition into a career in business?

lollipopp's picture
Rank: Chimp | 5

I'm finishing up a PhD in communications and audience/user analytics at a major state flagship university and I'm seriously considering going into the private sector as I've always been interested in working as a consultant or in finance, etc. It was a dream of mine when I was in high school but for all kinds of reasons I ended up in social sciences.

I've done some networking but I feel like the transition has been difficult because 1) I don't have any finance background or the domain expertise, and 2) Employers look at PhDs as somewhat "overqualified" and awkward to put in entry-level positions.

I tried to emphasize my research skills and analytic expertise that are very much transferrable when I applied to some positions (e.g. consumer insights or market analysts). However, I think the lack of experience in the industry has been a huge problem.

I've had a few opportunities interviewing at small consulting firms and made it to the final rounds of interviews. In the end, though, I either didn't perform strongly on the case interviews or there were competitive candidates with more industry experience.

I really wish i'd gone to business school instead of the PhD program but at this point as I'm almost done, I really don't think I can afford more schooling, both time wise and money wise.

If anyone has any advice for me, I'd sincerely appreciate it!

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Sep 12, 2018