Bay Area: Should I Take This Offer?

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Bay Area: Should I Take This Offer?

Postby Andy » Wed Oct 20, 2004 8:16 pm

Hi All,

I would REALLY appreciate some input.

Quick history: I left a nice biotech job in the Midwest to move to San Francisco (No details now, and I hope this thread doesn't get hijacked to a "when to move" thread. I know all the issues surrounding that decision and made the best one for my personal situation). That was 2.5 months ago. I have a pretty good network here, and have had some interest from good companies but no offers. In the meantime, I have been working pro bono at a research foundation helping to develop treatments for a specific disease. This foundation is relatively new and short on cash, but today they offered to put me on the payroll on a half-time basis in exchange for a six month committment on my part. During that six months, they would continue to try to raise additional money to put me on staff full time. Whether I would work there more than the 6 months is an open question due to commuting issues.

My question is: Should I give the foundation a six month commitment at half-time salary (and work), or continue to work pro bono and have the freedom to leave if another offer comes up? (Note: S.F. is expensive and making money is a good thing.)

I am strongly considering giving the six month committment because:

1. The people associated with this foundation are very good scientists, well-known, and well-respected. The director is a professor at a well known university and has founded his own successful biotech company. The foundation has ties to successful biotech and pharmaceutical companies.

2. The work am doing at the foundation is very relavent to drug development because it IS drug development. My work there is directly relevant to the biotech industry, where I hope to land again permanently.

3. The disease is important to me personally.

4. The half time nature of the work would enable me to continue to network, meet informally with people at companies I hope to work at after the 6 months, and explore California. I would probably work more than half time in reality, but I would have 1 or 2 days off per week. More sometimes if it would not impede steady progress in the lab.

I am also consulting with my former company from time to time. SORRY for the long post! Comments would be very much appreciated, pro and con.



Bay Area: Should I Take This Offer?

Postby Dave Jensen » Thu Oct 21, 2004 12:17 am


I can't help but think that taking that job offer would be a good thing. Not only because you are passionate about it (it shows) but because it gives you the flexibility to continuing looking and there is no commitment other than the six months.

If you have some strong leads in the hopper right now for other jobs, I would express more caution. But this doesn't appear to be the case. Is that correct? Have you gone through the hot/warm leads you had and at this time you are dry? If that is the case, taking this position may only mean that a company has to wait 90 days or so for you once they gear up, go through the interview process and settle on you as their man. I think that a company which is sold on a candidate will wait 90 days.

But not much more. That is the issue. You need to determine if there are logically any offers that might come in the short term.

The networking contacts you are making, and the fact that it could be a job that actually takes off and becomes a new full time position, all seem to me to be "take the job" indicators.

Andy, you've been through a tough job search, but you have a lot going for you (I know). So the options you have are to start totally fresh with a renewed effort on the job search front. or take this position and work it into something, all the while having the day or two every week to keep up the interviewing.

I'm sure you'll make the right decision.

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Bay Area: Should I Take This Offer?

Postby Andy » Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:56 am

Thanks, Dave. The last interview I had was at a certain company having vaccine production problems. They seemed interested, but I have not heard from them since the "big news" hit two weeks ago. Which I take to mean their interest has cooled or the position has lost some priority for them. I think I'll end up taking the six-month gig. My boss there will be a good guy to have in my corner on the job market.

I'd love to hear other perspectives as well.



Bay Area: Should I Take This Offer?

Postby Bill L. & Naledi S. » Thu Oct 21, 2004 10:39 am

Sounds like the 6 month offer is a good thing. But one can assume that the company having vaccine problems will fix those problems and continue to be successful so don't assume they've stopped/postponed hiring! They might just be slow.

Perhaps it would be a good idea to re-contact that company where you interviewed two weeks ago. (Think of it as a courtesy call to let them know a great candidate is going off the market if they don't move!) Just tell them you're calling to let them know that you have another offer, then tell them what you liked about their company/job and then just say you'd still like very much to hear back from them if they are ready to move with this position.

Best wishes --
Bill L. and Naledi S.
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Bay Area: Should I Take This Offer?

Postby Andy » Thu Oct 21, 2004 11:04 am

Good idea. I will definitely call the "vaccine company" today and let them know where things stand with me.

Thanks again,


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