How To Be an Academic Leader and Maintain Time For Yourself

Susan Dyer

Seventh grade English class and your assignment is to write a one pager about what you want to be when you grow up. Hmmm…sports writer, teacher, astronaut, video game creator, nurse, cowboy/girl, police person, senior faculty member!  Wait, what? Fast forward thirty years, and you find yourself sitting in a bigger office than most, with […]

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Simple Steps to Validating and Managing Others: A Bedtime Story

Julia Phillippi, PhD

You may be scoffing at finding time to read, but let’s face it, if you want to reach the next level you have to reach for it purposefully.

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Go go go...read The Progress Principle

The Edge for Scholars

Don’t let your lab’s fortunes sink like the Titanic, to borrow the opening simile from The Progress Principle.  Read this book instead and find out how to facilitate daily progress among yourself, your coworkers, and your subordinates, leading to “virtuous loops” of small successes (that add up to big victories) and happier, more creative and […]

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Watch the Front Lines

David Calkins, PhD

Delegation is important; but make sure to remain engaged.

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How to Manage People as a New Investigator

Rebecca Helton, MA

We recently hosted three newly independent investigators who run research teams humming with activity and people, who told us what it takes to manage a lab full of humans in all their idiosyncratic glory.  Here are their tips: Defining Expectations and Gathering Feedback Define your expectations of your team members and communicate them clearly and […]

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Don't Miss the Deal Breakers: Nine Questions for New Lab Staff Hires

Fighty Squirrel, PhD, Awe.Some.

Hooray! You’ve set up a lab. You have a scale and everything. Now the applicants are pounding down your door looking forward to helping you get the Nobel Prize. Before you hire the most enthusiastic person with the best grades, be sure you include some questions that could be deal breakers even for the candidates […]

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Go Pee. Academic Management Lessons I Learned from Audie Cornish.

Fighty Squirrel, PhD, Awe.Some.

This is Audie Cornish. Audie is my 1-year old Shiba Inu/Rottweiler mix who never has to pee. This is odd, because most larger mammals have a pretty pressing need to pee a couple of times a day. But not Audie. She shuns the whimpering, sad-eyed looks of other pets and sits there happily doing whatever she’s […]

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How to Interview the Hell Out of Academic Job Candidates

Fighty Squirrel, PhD, Awe.Some.

One of my favorite parts of being a faculty member is interviewing students, fellows and future faculty members. For reasons that elude my tiny Fighty Squirrel brain, folks think if you are a female and people liked you when they interviewed, it means you are nice. I’m not particularly nice. Ask my kids. What I […]

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Productivity Tip #7: Reclaim Your Meeting

The Edge for Scholars

How often do you hear a colleague say, “I’m so excited to attend today’s group meeting,” or a student remark, “How is it possible that my group meetings are so stimulating and engaging?” What’s that? You’ve never heard anyone say those things? Me neither. I dread meetings for the same reason that everyone does: They’re […]

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Managing a Budget as a New Investigator

Rebecca Helton, MA

Got your R and the realities of budget management sinking in? Want to prepare yourself financially to get to that R? Three newly independent investigators at Vanderbilt shared their wisdom with Newman Society members today.

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