Self-analysis

It’s important for your career to know what you can do, what you want, and what you need to get there.
Besides the Career Centre KNAW training workshops and courses, you can also use various online tools to help you.

Who am I and what am I capable of?

Understanding your personality, talents and points for improvement will help you make better choices. Start by clicking on the links below (in Dutch; English tests will be available shortly).

  • What am I capable of and what do I want? Take some online tests, such as a personality test or motivation test, and discover what you’re good at, what you need to improve, what your goals are and how you can achieve them.
  • Competencies: This site will help you discover what you’re good at and what competencies you possess. After you select sectors in the field that interests you, the site suggests potentially suitable occupations.

Set specific goals

Once you have a good idea of what you are capable of and what you want, you can start setting specific goals for yourself. The links below offer practical tips in various areas.

  • The importance of networking (pdf): You can use your network to reality check your ideas about your options and to practise communicating who you are and what you want. You can also explore the job market and alert others to your quest for a suitable job
  • Networking tips: It pays to be well prepared. Try to come up with open questions of your own before your networking meeting. Research the person you will be talking to on networking sites like LinkedIn. Make sure your CV is flawless and up to date, and be critical about your own appearance.
  • How to introduce yourself: the elevator pitch (pdf): Describe in just a few sentences who you are and how you will tackle your interviewer’s or prospect’s problems or meet their needs. Use clear language to tell your story and monitor their attentiveness by looking them in the eyes and checking their reactions to your story.
  • How do I put together my CV?: A good CV conveys precisely who you are. It does much more than summarise your educational background and work experience. A smart CV communicates what you want, your aims, your ambitions, and your competencies.
  • Tips for writing a letter of application (pdf): There is no standard letter of application. These tips will help you avoid clichés and platitudes. You’ll also learn how to use active sentences, project a true-to-life image of yourself, and find the right words to explain why you are seeking to change jobs.
  • Tips for job interviews: Learn more about why first impressions are so important, how to pitch your story, how to deal with difficult questions, and the importance of pleasant conversation and accepting a cup of tea or coffee. You’ll also learn how to assess whether the job and the people working there are a good fit for you.
  • The most common job interview questions: Interviewers ask many different questions during job interviews, but some questions are the same regardless of the opening involved. This site reviews the most common questions, for example ‘What are your strengths and weaknesses?’ and 'What are your skills?’.
  • Mindful career development for PhD students in the life sciences: This site offers PhD students in the life sciences tips on networking, writing a CV and letter of application, and looking for a post-doc position or career outside academia.
  • Transferable skills of PhD students.