7 Tips to Nail your Next Job Interview in Life Sciences

Job Interviews can be a stressful and pressure-filled environment. You’ve done well, getting the attention of a potential employer with your impressive CV or resume. But now, the interview is upon you. Ace this, and you’re one step closer to the position you’ve always wanted. That’s why it’s important to be prepared before going into your interview. This post will give you tips on how to nail your interview whether it be for a pharma, biotech, or lab position.


Nailing your Next Job Interview

  • Research the Lab or Company
  • Review Possible Interview Questions
  • Go Over Your Research
  • Promptness is a Virtue
  • First Impressions are Key
  • Remain Calm
  • Failure is an Acceptable Option


Research the Lab or Company

As soon as you have a date and time set for your interview, it’s important to research exactly what that laboratory or company has as their main goals and business. It’ll give you a better understanding of what they are looking for in a qualified candidate. This is the perfect information to highlight in your interview. Knowledge of the business will most likely impress your interviewer, and it’s a good way to begin preparing for your interview.

If you’re interviewing for a lab, you can research what kinds of grants they’ve received. This will give you an idea of the structure and importance of the lab. As well, you can look at the recent publications that the lab has released recently. It can help you understand the kind of work the laboratory does on a normal basis. In the interview, you will be able to discuss what you can do for their work, having known the scientific research they take part in.


Review Possible Interview Questions

Preparation is key to have a successful interview. You wouldn’t act in a play on Broadway without rehearsing your lines many times. Although somewhat different, it is still relevant to go over possible questions a company might ask you. Research most asked questions such as “Can you describe yourself in three words?”, “Why do you want to work for us?”, or the ever dreaded “What is your greatest weakness?” Come up with your answers to these questions in your head, and practice speaking them out loud. This will allow your mind to be ready if the interviewer asks those questions to you. With already formulated responses, it’ll be less stressful during the interview as well as easier for you to express yourself.

Come up with your answers to these questions in your head, and practice speaking them out loud. If you’re interviewing for a lab, the interviewer might ask questions about GLP or proper lab safety, for example. Be prepared as well to answer questions about how proficient you are with certain lab equipment and machinery. It is important to do some research on these questions to better understand how to answer them. This will allow your mind to be ready if the interviewer asks those questions to you. With already formulated responses, it’ll be less stressful during the interview as well as easier for you to express yourself.


Go Over your Research

All throughout your time at University from undergrad to completing your doctoral thesis, you have done a large amount of research and lab work. If you’re interviewing to work in a lab, it is best to remember the highlights of your research. The interviewer might ask about your proficiency and efficiency with a certain piece of equipment. Be ready to regale him with stories of your research and what you worked on.

Even if you aren’t interviewing for a lab position, and instead you are looking for something more in sales and marketing, it is still important to discuss your research with the interviewer. Showing successful research shows hard work, dedication, the ability to accomplish goals, and teamwork. This can impress your interviewer, possibly enough to increase the probability that you will be given the job.


Promptness is a Virtue

The best way to start the interview experience off on the right foot is to show up punctual to the interview. You must be willing to show up early to show your possible future employer that you can be trusted to be on time. The best way to show your promptness is by showing up to the interview early. It does not need to be much, but arriving five to ten minutes early is quite useful. Your interviewer will most likely be impressed with your punctuality, starting the interview off better than if you had shown up exactly on time.


First Impressions are Key

It can be said that the only impression that matters is the first impression. You can grab the attention of your interviewer with your fantastic experiences, but if you do not start off with a good first impression, most of what you say really won’t matter. This is an unfortunate consequence of humanity. If you do not begin the first few minutes off well, it’ll be quite difficult for the interview to be a success. A great way is, at the start of the interview, give the interviewer a firm handshake, introducing yourself. Make sure to use eye contact as well. Just doing this correctly will make you seem confident and qualified, without actually getting into the interview itself.

You may have to meet more than just the Group Leader. You could meet other team members that you would work with, and it’s important as well to make a good first impression with them. Have a light, open, and personable attitude during that time. It will not only draw respect from the people you meet but also increase your chances of being offered the position.


Remain Calm

It’s no surprise that job interviews are stressful situations for the interviewee. It in itself is a test by the company to test your mettle in more high-strung environments and situations. The interviewer might ask you a question you were not prepared for, you might find yourself at a loss for words, or you might make a slight mistake. It can derail your interview, but only if you allow it. The best idea is to keep calm and work to correct the unexpected happenstances. The question isn’t whether you will make mistakes, it’s what you are willing to do after that to fix them.


Failure is an Acceptable Option

We are all aware that life isn’t perfect. There’s a distinct possibility that you won’t get the job you’re interviewing for, whether by your mistake or the company choosing a different candidate. It is important in this scenario to evaluate what you believe you did right and what you did wrong during the interview. Don’t be discouraged. The best way to continue is to apply for more positions at different companies and laboratories.

No matter what, it is encouraged to stay positive and determined in your continuing career search. If you fail the first interview you have, don’t worry. Either you win, or you learn, and that’ll help you become wiser for the next position you apply for.


Having a good career is one of the most important ways to have more life satisfaction and happiness. With one of the last steps in securing a position being a job interview, it is imperative to be prepared for it. Following these seven tips will assist your preparation for being interviewed by the company or laboratory you wish to work for. Even so, you must be able to adapt to unexpected events that might happen. But, if you can do it successfully, the career you’ve always wanted might soon be yours.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *