Friday, January 9, 2009

An amusing take on the biotech experience

Richard Grant of The Scientist blog recently posted a highly entertaining three-part series detailing his experiences as a senior scientist in a small UK start-up.

Part One covers the application process, the project, and the first warning signs that "would have made a more mature head send insistent ‘run away, quickly’ signals to its legs and ‘scream, loudly’ signals to its mouth."

Part Two outlines the evolving project, "tinkering with the machine, making sure it was as good as it possibly could be, and wondering how Marketing were going to cock this one up", and the inevitable meeting and management frustrations.

The Finale covers Richard's escape from an ailing company as "things started moving in even more disturbing directions."

Richard's story highlights the risks inherent in working for a small start-up. Although the biotech company I worked for was much more mature, I recognised some of the issues caused by scientists left in charge of business endeavours. Having said that, the right company, and the right people, can turn a small start-up into the ideal employer.

Read, enjoy, and please be patient while the contributors to this blog work get around to more posts. The second of my "interview a friend over drinks" series is in the early planning stages, and I see a few other draft posts in the back end of the blog.