A Question I Asked During My Interview Helped Me Land The Job

Alyssa Greenfield
A Question I Asked During My Interview Helped Me Land The Job
Sponsored by, Thermo Fisher Scientific

When Kian Nowrouzi’s high school classmates were busy with video games and frequent trips to the mall, he was trading stocks and playing the market.

Anyone who knew him probably wasn’t too surprised when Kian found himself drawn toward economics in college, which he studied while an undergrad. One class led to another, which led to another, and soon he was hooked on behavioral economics, which focuses on the psychological and social factors that affect economic decisions.

In the lead-up to graduation, he knew he wanted to continue working within the field, but he wasn’t sure how to do that. Then he discovered Thermo Fisher Scientific, landing an interview with their Finance Leadership Development Program. He approached the meeting the way you’d probably expect him to: strategically and analytically.


“Before my interview, I started digging into the Thermo Fisher site and reading articles,” he says. “Oil prices were collapsing right around the time of my interview, and I was meeting with someone who worked in the plastics department.”

With oil on his mind, Kian was reminded of a report he had come across that outlined the number of plastic products Thermo Fisher makes every year. To show he’d done his homework, he brought up the report and asked if the change in oil prices had affected production levels.

The good news was, the impact was minimal. The better news? He wowed the interviewer in the process.

He, of course, got the job.

Since his first day a year and a half ago, it’s been non-stop learning and career growth for Kian. Through the rotational program, he’s had the opportunity to work in three different Thermo Fisher locations in two different states, and he’s about to take on a fourth role.

Thanks to the unique format of the program, Kian essentially gets to work four jobs in less time than most people spend in a single job. Not many recent grads can say they’ve done that. “[Leading up to graduation], my experience was similar to a lot of recent grads,” he says. “I didn’t know what I wanted to do because I hadn’t done anything yet.” The format of the Leadership Development Program enabled him to figure out what he wanted to do—and what he didn’t.

The other thing he’s learned? How to adapt to new environments and challenges. In a rotational program, like the one at Thermo Fisher, you have six months to learn a new role, understand the office culture, and make new connections before moving on to another job—and perhaps another state.


When he moved for his job from his hometown of Boston to Pittsburgh, Kian says the transition took some adjusting. But figuring out how to take on a new role and a new city was well worth the challenge. And since his first rotation in cost accounting, which had him working on-site at a manufacturing plant, Kian has channeled his passion for behavioral economics into his career.

Kian knew that putting together a scientific instrument requires a long list of steps from start to finish. If someone misses a step, it costs the company money. So Kian pulled from what he learned about human behavior and finance and devised a solution that made checking off every step of the process a whole lot easier—and more cost-effective for the company.

And what does Kian do when he’s not solving behavioral science problems? Google his name, and you might stumble upon his photography website. In Kian’s world, finance and photography aren’t all that different. “There’s space for art in finance—if you know where to look for it,” he says. For him, that might mean transforming spreadsheets filled with financial data into visual stories that help his Thermo Fisher co-workers make smarter decisions.

While Kian joined the Finance Leadership Development Program, the company also has undergraduate programs in finance, information technology, operations, procurement, and sales, and graduate-level programs in general management and human resources. Check out their open positions on WayUp to apply!

Thermo Fisher Scientific is the world leader in serving science.  They offer services and products that help customers around the globe in laboratories, in clinics, on production lines, and out in the field.