Bill was good enough to reply and put his own words in his own mouth in the comments.
Yeah, that's a pretty good interpretation of what I was saying. To be fair to some grumbling postdocs, though, it isn't necessarily simply a matter of knowing one's options, as there are lots of experienced postdocs who would love to work in industry (at least from what I hear). But they are trapped because they can't get a job there either. So I can understand their anguish.He had previously asked, offline and when he was asking if this site was me (CAUGHT!) about this same subject. Essentially "how do I get in to industry bench". Many do an academic post doc knowing they don't want to be there, is essentially Bill's point (and...his dilemma).
Way back at the beginning of this blog, I talked a bit about this. Now, I have actually asked a bunch of people stuff and have a 1/2 way coherent thing to say on the matter.
Much to my surprise, ALL of our directors at the R+D level did academic post docs. About 1/2 of them did 2. All of the people right below the directors did at least 1 (and sometimes 2, although many fewer of them). I was, bluntly, blown away. This has taken awhile, as I started asking people at other companies. N kept increasing but the percentages didn't change. They all do academic post docs.
On the business side, I found that for those with Ph.D.'s the number of postdocs was many fewer. No 2's that I ran in to, and maybe 1/3 of the folks with even 1. Most of us, myself included, totally skipped that step.
We have one friend who did an industry post doc, so I don't really know how you score her. She essentially was working in industry, but becuase she called herself (and was in a program that called her this) a postdoc -> she got paid less. I didn't really understand how that worked for her. Totally understand how it works for the company!!!
SO - To stay at the bench you have to do postdocs. Who knew? (well a lot of people....)