Academics, scientists, researchers – all LOVE their job. In many cases the love drives the work. This means it can take up the time allotted to it. But, if you ask me, that’s the reason why you struggle so much with negative feedback. Your entire life, your sense of self is all bound up in your research self. There are few other interests to drive your intellect. To take your attention. To pick you up when research is taking you down. So, make sure you have non-work time each week.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/on-having-non-work-time-2/
Six lessons I have learned helping others with social media:
1. Time – It takes time to build your social media muscle. There’s no substitute for hours on the platform. There’s no substitute for being on the platform for many years.
2. Know your audience – Knowing who you want as a follower as well as who follows you.
3. Research works – Investigate the content, channels, posts, time of day that leads to the results you’re after. Spend time testing different approaches. Learn where your ideal followers hang out.
4. Research your audience – Make a list of their likes, and dislikes. Get specific. Know these details for each of the accounts you’d like as a follower.
5. Ask – For what you want. Likes. Shares. Follows. Downloads.
6. Copy others – Look at what they are doing. Don’t steal their content but reuse their ideas. Video styles. Picture styles. Words. Layouts. Approaches.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/six-lessons-ive-learned-helping-researchers-with-social-media-2/
If you want your work to be read, downloaded, and cited, you MUST promote it. So, what are some of the best ways you’ve seen an academic share their research work on social media? Here are 15 ideas from me…
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/fifteen-posts-to-help-promote-your-next-journal-article-2/
The un-official social media channel of choice for academics is Twitter. So, as a PhD student or ECR, if you’re not here you might not be noticed by your peers. Especially if you have yet to publish a peer review piece of research. Especially if you have not been able to attend in-person networking events (like conferences). I go through how to use Twitter as a researcher. How you might be able to better engage eminent researchers in your field. As well as using twitter to engage a wider audience for your research outputs.
Choosing a (new) social media channel?
Here are 5 steps to help make a start:
1. Know your preferences.
2. Understand your goal.
3. Know your audience.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/choosing-a-social-media-channel-4/
There are all kinds of ways to write a thesis. And thus, there are all kinds of mistakes you can make in the process.
Here are some that I have seen:
• Starting too early
• Starting too late
• Not involving your supervisor
• Poor backups
• Delayed referencing
• Not using a reference manager
• Not knowing your word processor
• Poor file nomenclature
Link to transcript:
Getting better at writing is one of the best ways to increase your research output. Yet, we spend very little time learning or practicing writing.
So here are 5 tips to improve your writing:
1. Read the style of writing you want to write.
2. Write assuming people will skim and skip sections.
3. Use subheadings.
4. Don’t write like Santa gave you words for Christmas.
5. Don’t dismiss reviewer comments as “ignorant” take them as a chance to improve.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/writing-a-better-thesis-dissertation-or-journal-article-2/
Ever been tempted to “cancel Christmas” in order that you can get something done. What about skipping training so you can write an assignment or finish an experiment? STOP! It’s killing your effectiveness as a worker.
1. You’re fostering self-organisation.
2. Exercise helps memory and improves happiness.
3. Diversity in life creates resilience.
4. You cannot set boundaries.
You can find the transcript on this link: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/keep-on-playing/
This episode of AMA is LinkedIn. Ask a question. Try to answer it.
What have people asked (and had answered)?:
Should I be on LinkedIn?
What should my profile look like?
How do I get followers?
Should I accept connection requests from “randoms”?
This episode is all about returning to study at any level (certificate, diploma, advanced diploma, degree or post grad.) irrespective of your academic background, perceived aptitude for study or level of confidence (it will grow). Dr Richard Huysmans shares some thoughts, ideas, tips and strategies for opening the door to some later-in-life learning (whether you’re 27 or 77).
Getting better at reading is one of the best ways to increase your research output. Yet, we spend very little time learning or practicing reading or recalling what we’ve read. So here are 5 tips to improve your reading and recall:
1. Take notes as you read, not only when you write.
2. Use a citation manager.
3. Don’t read the entire article.
4. Don’t read from front to back.
5. Read the easy stuff first.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/a-better-way-to-read-journal-articles-2/
LinkedIn is one of the oldest social media channels. Yet, depending on who or what you listen to it has yet to reach the “maturity” of channels such as Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. What do I mean by maturity? Well, many would say that LinkedIn has strong organic reach when compared to those three. That is, a post you make can be seen by a large proportion of your connections without having to pay to promote or boost the content. Beyond this, LinkedIn is AWESOME at helping researchers connect with potential end-users of their work.
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to changing your PhD topic. But there are some things you can consider. Here I ask 12 questions to help you move through the process. And if you’re into scoring, you could rate each one to help you decide what to do next.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/twelve-questions-to-consider-when-changing-phd-topic-2/
In September last year, I started some new writing groups. Even though my role is facilitator and training, I have learned a lot about writing itself. Here are 11 ideas that came to mind:
1. Writing is annoying and rewarding.
2. Writing shared is writing halved.
3. Ignore the basics.
4. Set up for success.
5. Share your progress.
6. Imagine you’re being paid.
7. Aesthetics matters.
8. Social media is a gateway to more writing.
9. Regular writing will help your career.
11. Writing never ends.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/eleven-things-ive-learned-about-running-writing-groups-2/
Project management is too complex. And therefore project management in research is regularly avoided.
BUT - researchers can fix that with some simple approaches.
Fix 1: Don't expect others to use your project management tool or approach. Expect you’ll need to do all of the work maintaining and updating the plan.
Fix 2: Don't have a detailed plan covering your entire project or PhD. But do know how long you can spend on your project or PhD.
Fix 3: Use an iterative project management approach. One that checks in against progress and experiments on a monthly basis.
Fix 4: Use a simple project management tool, such as one-page-project-management so that if others need to see the program, they can, but it is not overwhelming.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/simplifying-research-project-management-2/
“COVID normal” is almost upon us. In Victoria (Australia) we are now allowed to have more people onsite. Businesses can have up to 75% of their workforce in the office. And, just like working from home caused nervousness and anxiety, so too will going back into the office. Here are some things you could try to help deal with those nerves:
1. Talk about your feelings with colleagues.
2. Discuss transition arrangements (i.e., don’t go back into work 5 days a week).
3. As leaders, don’t expect massive improvements to productivity just because “we’re all onsite now”.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/it-is-okay-to-feel-nervous-anxious-even-2/
Supporting university-to-university collaborations is not easy. Many partners are sceptical that the decisions made, or actions taken are biased towards or against themselves. And this is a natural occurrence. And, even if there was or is no bias, it can be tough to get rid of perceptions. So I’m proposing an alternate approach. A pool of project managers. Have a read. I’d love to know you thoughts.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/a-better-model-to-support-university-collaborations-2/
In my experience there are two types of researchers promoting their content on social media. Those who do nothing, and those who say “I’m so excited to announce my paper on [something] was published [somewhere]. If you want to do more than that (and I recommend you aspire to better than that) here are some tips:
1. Prepare in advance.
2. Make as many options as you can (not just one).
3. Include pics, words, and a link to your paper.
4. Add audio or video right in the post (not a link).
5. Focus on what you want to do next.
6. Tag others.
7. Use hashtags.
8. Give me a reason to read.
9. Use a scheduling tool.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/how-to-promote-your-research-on-social-media-2/
This workshop focus on social media. Whatever your social media question is – bring it and I’ll give you an answer.
What have people asked (and had answered)?:
- Best channel for me.
- Best channel for the people I want to engage.
- What content should I post.
- How to respond to trolls.
Just like talking to your superiors can be tough, so too can talking to your students. Here are five things you can focus on (in addition to the earlier 9 I put together):
1. Know your expectations.
2. Let (some of) your expectations go.
3. Know the power you have over your students.
4. Be open to different solutions.
5. Don’t wait to have these conversations.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/having-tough-conversations-with-your-students-3/
It is almost impossible to be a successful research without an active social media account. You might even have more than one. And, at times it feels like yet another thing to be accountable for – like students, or teaching, or writing grants. But it does not have to be that way. I go through different ways you can improve your social media game. From creating better content, to creating more content, to being able to post all of that great stuff without being tied to your phone, computer or social media accounts.
COVID has taken a lot away. But it has also shown us what is possible. From solving homelessness, to reducing pollution, to creating lifesaving vaccines. The are also BIG opportunities at the individual level too. COVID meant we stopped everything. Now, as you head back into “normal life” you get to consider what you put in. Don’t waste that opportunity.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/the-big-opportunity-of-covid-2/
If you’ve ever tried writing a grant, proposal, cover letter, social media or podcast you’ll have likely encountered difficulties being creative. One approach to overcoming this is to use oblique strategies.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/being-a-more-creative-grant-proposal-or-social-media-writer-2/
Six things that you might not know about applying for a job:
1. Selection bias is real – male names are better than female, common names are better than foreign names.
2. Photos aren’t necessary – and introduce more opportunity for discrimination.
3. Age is not needed either – more opportunity for discrimination.
4. Dates – especially for education – are not needed.
5. Bots scan your resumes – make sure OCR is on/present.
6. Bots scan your resumes – make sure yours has relevant keywords in it (search and highlight within job ads and PDs and check against your resume.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/six-things-you-might-not-know-about-applying-for-jobs-2/
You should be earning or learning – but not all learning has to be the same. They don’t need to be formal qualifications. Experience is a way of learning. Learning through doing is a way to learn. And, not everyone cares about that “certificate” either.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/you-dont-need-another-qualification-2/
There are many reasons to do a PhD. But few reasons to discontinue, intermit or leave a PhD (or academia). Beyond why you might leave, you should also consider what you should do on the way out. Here are some suggestions.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/should-i-finish-my-phd-and-other-questions-you-might-be-asking-yourself-2/
Every fortnight I host a free workshop on topics that PhD students, ECRs and academics might find useful. In the alternate weeks, I do this – an ask me anything event. Sometimes there’ll be a guest. Other times just me. And we’ll just chat. Ask a question. Try to answer it.
What have people asked (and had answered)?:
Dealing with sh1tty students
Dealing with sh1tty supervisors
Changing dissertation or thesis topics
Resumes or CVs – the short documents used as a major tool for job applications – are a common source of angst for job seekers. Even people with extensive careers. Even for people who’ve been through the application process many times. So, as a “newbie” to the process, it is normal and usual to be stressed about what to include.
Here are some things that might help you write your resume:
• Write for the reader
• PhDs count as experience
• No lists of articles, grants, and awards
• No referees
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/five-ways-to-improve-your-resume-2/
Routines and their negative counterparts – superstitions – are common in most forms of life and work. Routines help you by shifting our mental state into one of relaxed concentration. Superstitions can hold you back by making you believe success cannot happen with(out) them. Could you be making better use of routine in your research work or writing?
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/routine-or-superstition-2/
What does the data say about writing a resume? Lots of things. Including:
• Layout matters
• Highlight your achievements
• Experience before education
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/four-tips-for-writing-a-better-resume-2/
So often I hear, “What program should I use to write my thesis?” And, like photographers say the best camera is the one you have with you, the best program to write your thesis with is the one you have. Most people have MS Word. Yet, many overlook it for other programs (e.g. scrivener). Or worse, they persist with MS Word but don’t use all of the available functionality. I’ll go through some of the key functionality that will make writing your thesis in MS Word a breeze (well the Word processing bit – it can’t make the writing itself any easier).
In this AMA edition, Richard answers questions he received online. He covers topics about making PhD progress, the changing nature of your research questions whether you refer yourself as a PhD candidate or student on your resume, how batching your work (and pomodoros), and increasing your productivity.
Finally, he posted a question asking students to rate their PhD. With a rating in mind, what they think about? What they like to:
- Stay the same
- Do more of
Although most people will recommend that you write your thesis as you go. Although most people will discourage you from leaving writing until the end. The reality is, most people leave the majority of their writing to the end of their PhD. So, in this podcast, we’ll talk about and make a plan to get it all written in 15 weeks!
The problem most academics have working with industry is that they assume industry is like them. So here are 4 tips to help you work with industry:
(1) Remove your prejudice;
(2) Understand their motivations;
(3) Know their financial schedule; and
(4) Time is precious
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/four-tips-for-working-with-industry-as-an-academic-2/
What questions do you have about looking for work? I’ve listed a few here. But if you’ve got others I’d love to know. Maybe I can answer? Or the crowd that is social media can?
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/if-i-leave-academia-should-i-retrain-and-what-matters-to-industry/
Thinking about leaving academia? Here are 8 common questions and my answers. As with most things career related, there’s no right or wrong. There’s what you might like, and what you might not like. And, the only way you’ll know is by giving it a go. So, go on, give IT a go – whatever IT is for you.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/eight-questions-and-answers-on-leaving-academia/
Setting work boundaries is one of the most important things you’ll need to learn. It’ll be useful as a PhD student, and onto whatever academic or non-academic work you might pursue. But how do you do it? Here, I’ve set out some examples that might help you determine your boundaries, and how you implement them.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/setting-boundaries/
Setting boundaries is essential to overall life balance. And, as a PhD student you might know what you want, but struggle to implement it. So, here, I’ve put some advice that might help when trying to set and implement boundaries when there’s a power imbalance.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/dealing-with-power-imbalances-when-setting-boundaries/
Job losses, redundancies, and restructures are a part of modern business. Sometimes they are driven by internal factors, other times they are driven by external factors. For the most part we are just passengers on a ride managed by others. However, whether you are let go or left behind, these changes can give you opportunities to try new things and develop new skills. So, deal with the shock, then quickly get on with making the most of the opportunity.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/making-the-most-of-a-bad-situation-2/
If you want to be a successful academic, you’ll need to publish regularly. If you’re yet to write an article, or if you get anxious thinking about writing, then maybe give this a try. In this podcast, we’ll go through the book, what is covered and how you can make a plan to write a journal article in 12 weeks.
Project Management need not be complex. Nor does there need to be massive files, lots of paperwork and complex Gantt charts. In this podcast, I’ll go through a tool I use to manage projects – the One Pape Project Management (OPPM) tool.
Small gains in productivity can have a huge benefit long term. That’s the result of compounding. If you save a minute on a process that you do several times a day you might get 5 minutes extra per day or 30 hours in a year. So, making a small improvement to your social media game could give you back time.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/improving-your-social-media-strategy-2/
So much academic output is focused on the written word. Yet so little time is spent looking at how to do it. Further, once we do it, we never look at how we could improve the process – even if marginally. Through use of the concept of marginal gains, I thought you could improve your productivity by an article (or more) per year.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/making-marginal-gains-in-your-research-writing-2/
Marginal gains are small improvements that have the opportunity to compound. They were made famous by the British Cycling Team that competed (and won lots of gold medals) at the 2008 Olympics. But the idea has been around for much longer than that. In some respects it’s the automation and mechanisation of repetitive processes. And, in the hyper competitive world of academic grants, and publication marginal gains can be the difference between on-going success or a series of near misses.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/how-to-make-marginal-gains-in-your-research-2/
It is a long list...
1. Why (go back to) study?
2. How should I study?
3. How do I prefer to learn?
4. What do I want to do after I complete my study?
5. Am I ready for other peoples’ reaction?
6. What will I need to change to make this work?
7. What must stay the same (in order for this to work)?
8. What am I not giving up (no matter what)?
9. What will I gain?
10. What’s my plan?
11. Am I ready to do the work?
12. What is success for me?
13. What happens when I lose motivation?
14. What happens if it is not what I expected?
15. What are the power dynamics between me, and my teachers?
16. What are the power dynamics between me, and my fellow students?
17. Full-time or part-time?
18. Do I need to quit my job?
19. Who/how will I pay?
20. What’s my entry plan?
21. What’s my exit plan?
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/twenty-one-questions-to-ask-and-answer-before-you-do-a-phd/
A key part of academic life is reading – reading all of the necessary research literature. Now, you could never hope to read it all. But you could improve your reading through marginal gains. Making changes that result in small improvements that compound. Read daily. Queue your reading. Read on devices, not just computer or paper.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/how-to-read-more-articles-2/
Six tips to being a better PhD supervisor:
1. Do the training.
2. Know your students.
3. Respect their time.
4. Refer to others.
5. Model good behaviour.
6. Make progress visible.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/six-tips-to-become-a-better-phd-supervisor/
There are four PhD derailers. Avoid them where you can. But if you cannot avoid them, here are some ways through or around them.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/four-phd-derailers-and-their-solutions/
Being an academic and/or training to be one (e.g. PhD student) means that you view a lot of your skills and experiences in that light. However, if you ask others' for their ideas you'll find your skills are transferable. So, if you're an academic (hammer) you'll see everything as an academic skill (a nail). So, talk to other people (tools) about their experiences.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/when-youre-a-hammer-everything-looks-like-a-nail-2/
So much of what we do is up for review at the moment. And one of the biggest changes is an increased use of videoconferencing. It's been used across society from game shows, to press conferences to meetings. Now all of these are relatively "normal" uses of video. But, my challenge to you is to be open to more novel uses of video. For example, play dates, birthdays and meditation are all things I would immediately said "no" to but I was forced to try them. Now, I know they work. So - ask yourself - Will it Zoom?
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/will-it-zoom-2/
What’s a high-performing research team I hear you ask? I’d like to know too! But, until then we can look to examples like performing art or motorsport. We’ll look at how those teams operate and some of the lessons we can take into our research teams.
Do you manage research projects or do they manage you? If you’d like to have more clarity about what is happening when; who is responsible; reporting and milestone timing then this podcast is for you. Bring your questions, as I’m guaranteed to have answers. And you never know, some of my answers might even be good ones.
Being a researcher does not need to involve working at a university. Or even having a PhD. Many companies and organisations undertake research and their researchers come from all manner of backgrounds.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/what-does-it-take-to-become-a-researcher-2/
It is hard to know what impact COVID-19 will have on universities, and academic teaching. Of course you could read what others think, or watch video. But you could also do your own war-gaming or scenario planning. That's what I did. And that is what I run through quickly here.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/impact-of-covid-19-on-universities/
Academic work is often a sea of rejection, revision, and re-write. Thus, it can be hard to keep upbeat when it seems like everything and everyone is a critic.
The solution - The Legend File - a file or folder full of all of the nice things people have said about you or your work.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/the-legend-file-2/
PhDs take forever. Well, it seems that way. Data on completion times suggests 7 years is the average. Yet, (Australian) universities are pushing 3 years, perhaps with a 6 month extension. So, how do you stay focused? Or, more to the point, what are the kinds of things that distract you from making meaningful progress in your PhD and how can you avoid them? I’ll have (some) of the answers to those questions. I can’t have all of the answers, because you – the student or supervisor – also have a massive role to play.
Should researchers be on YouTube? Well, if you believe that the future of content is video then the answer must be yes! YouTube is the second most visited website in the world. Second only to Google search. Facebook is 3rd. Thus, if you want to influence on social media, you should at least be thinking about YouTube. In this FREE on-line workshop I’ll present current usage stats for the platform, the kinds of people using it, what they use it for and when. It’ll be all you need to know to start building your YouTube content strategy.
If tough conversations were easy, we’d all be having them, and they wouldn’t be called tough. They are tough for a reason or sometimes several reasons. However, there are things you can do to make them less tough. For example:
• Agree on a framework for discussion before you need to have the tough conversation.
• Know what you want to say and what the solution might be.
• Manage your emotions.
• Hear the other person.
• Agree on the next actions.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/nine-steps-to-having-difficult-conversations-with-your-supervisor/
I think researchers do not do enough to make the most of their invited, and peer reviewed presentations. Both oral, and posters. So, in this podcast, I give you 8 tips to help you get more engagement from your conference presentations.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/eight-things-to-do-to-leverage-your-next-conference-presentation/
With COVID causing chaos it can be hard to actually "develop" your career during this time. But, that does not mean you should stop thinking about it. So, instead of development I suggest "first aid" doing small things that will keep you "alive" so you can take advantage of opportunities that arise when we start working in spite of COVID.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/career-first-aid/
Sometimes, talking with your PhD students can be like trying to negotiate with a silverback gorilla. And, maybe in those times you’re better off taking the same response as we did with COVID19 and physically distance yourself. But, for the other times, when its going to be tough but not gorilla tough – what can you do to make it easier? Or how could you have a tough conversation and avoid gorillas? I’ll look at different approaches to talking to PhD students. We’ll look at things from their perspective and also discuss real world examples.
There's a lot of focus on academics having a range of social media channels - LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. But very little attention is paid to YouTube. Yet, YouTube is the second most viewed social media behind Facebook. And, depending on who you read - the future of content is video. So, get on YouTube.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/im-an-academic-researcher-should-i-have-a-youtube-account-2/
So, you've had a long layoff from work. Maybe it was because of COVID-19, maybe it was for another reason. Regardless of why, here are 12 things to check/do before you go back to the office, lab or classroom:
1. Look in the mirror.
2. Try your work clothes on.
3. Check it all fits and works together.
4. Get into a routine.
5. Be prepared to say no.
6. Be prepared to ask to do more work from home.
7. Confirm your commute.
8. Remember what you learnt from COVID-19.
9. Pay attention to your pets.
10. Pack your bag.
11. Don't expect to be productive immediately.
12. Thank researchers, schoolteachers, and health care workers.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/twelve-things-to-do-before-going-back-into-the-office-2/
COVID-19 is driving me a bit crazy. So I'm reaching out to you - my friends and followers on the internet- saying "let's meet". You set the agenda. But it could be anything. Work. Soccer. Beer brewing. Drums. Gardening. Cooking. Religion. Politics. Money. Mental Health.
Reply, DM, email, call or SMS. I'll sort the rest.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/covid-19-driving-me-crazy-so-meeting-with-subscribers-friends-and-followers/
COVID-19 is throwing everything into chaos. And, there are lots of articles and videos focused on being productive in spite of all that. I've written and published my share.
BUT - it is okay to have an off day, week or month. So, have empathy for yourself. Getting through is enough. You'll have time on the other side of this to get productive.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/have-empathy-for-yourself/
Three different strategies for career planning:
1)Ten year back casting - start ten years from now. Think about how you'd like that to look/be and then work backwards (hence back casting) from there to now.
2) Future skills - look a lists of skills of the future and build the needed skills.
3) What you love - make lists of what you love, what you are good at, what people will pay you to do and what you would happily do for money. The thing(s) on all four lists are good options for careers. If there's nothing on all four, then you'll need to adjust the lists. Or, you might need to adjust your goals around work.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/three-different-strategies-for-career-planning/
Working from home is a new challenge for many.
Seven things that I reckon help are:
(1) Set up ergonomically.
(2) Communicate your needs with your housemates.
(3) Keep good records so you can claim costs later.
(4) Take breaks.
(5) Dress the part.
(6) Schedule your workday.
(7) Keep your "work" space separate from your "home" space.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/seven-tips-for-working-from-home-2/
PhD students regularly stress of selecting the "right" topic. But it is not something that you can know when you start. The important thing is to recognise that each change you make to your original idea is likely to increase the time it takes to complete your PhD.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/how-will-i-know-if-my-phd-topic-is-a-good-one/
Networking is essential to career success. Yet, we often overlook the easy networking opportunities right in front of us - learning about and knowing the people you are studying with.
Watch the video and read the blog https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/are-you-really-networking/
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/are-you-really-networking-2/
Want to increase the citations of your work?
1. Long descriptive titles.
2. Promoting it on social media.
3. Let the authors you cite know about your work.
4. Write multi-author papers.
5. Repeat! Read more (https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/nine-ways-to-increase-awareness-and-citations-of-your-research-work/) or watch the video.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/four-tips-to-increase-citations-and-industry-uptake-of-your-work/
Accounting and managing in-kind contributions is one of the hardest things that a research centre manager has to do. There's no easy solution - but you could try regular updates in meetings.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/financial-management-accounting-for-in-kind/
We are told we need to be resilient and that we need to develop our resilience, but how?
Here I cover 6 strategies:
1. Catch your thoughts.
2. Analyse your thoughts.
3. Be mindful.
4. Be grateful.
5. Have a diverse life.
6. Know your values and live in alignment with them.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/six-ways-to-increase-your-resilience-2/
Building a website is easy - but there's lots that might confuse so... In six steps:
1. Choose a domain name (your name is easiest).
2. Register with an all-in-one provider (they'll register the name, host the website and provide a content management system).
3. Decide on what you will cover/focus on. Just research? Or teaching and other stuff as well?
4. Create the content.
5. Publish it!
6. Promote it (in your email signature, university web page, and on your business card).
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/six-steps-to-building-your-website-2/
There are lots of social media options available these days. The popular ones being Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Academics have tended to use Twitter, but I think LinkedIn is better in many situations.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/social-media-in-research-and-why-linkedin-is-best-2/
Sometimes your current role is not exactly what you want to do in life or at the moment. And, in those cases it may seem like there are not many options. But, in reality there are lots. Most don't require retraining. And most can be trialed via/within your current role.
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/five-streams-of-work-to-transition-into-2/
No matter how well your PhD progresses, no matter how good a relationship you (think you) have with your supervisor(s), at some point there’ll be a need for a tough conversation. It could be about publication authorship. It could be about experimental design. It could be about grant writing, or thesis submission or leaving academia. Whatever the topic, in this workshop, I’ll go through some strategies you can use to make these conversations easier. But, don’t be fooled, no matter what, they’ll never be easy.
For whatever reason, I feel like researchers jumped on Twitter like a shopper desperate for toilet paper during social distancing. But, if like me you’re still not sure what the fuss over twitter (or toilet paper) was about, or If you want to know about more about the platform this workshop is for you. I’ll present current usage stats for the platform, the kinds of people using it, what they use it for and when. It’ll be all you need to know to start building your Twitter content strategy. And yes, you can set up separate “work” and “personal” accounts.
Three tips for writing grants faster:
- Pre-write sections
- Plan writing the specific grant
- Re-apply if/when you are unsuccessful
Link to transcript: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/three-tips-for-writing-grants-faster/
Other than social media, conference presentations are likely the largest audience you can present your work to. And, let’s be honest, you could have had a barbecue during COVID19 with all of your research-related followers and not violated social distancing laws. So conferences are huge opportunities. But, so much of the focus is on the presentation and the data, when in actual fact you should be focused on getting connections. Connections that could be collaborators. Connections that could be employers. Connections that could be mentors. I’ll go through some simple things you can do as part of preparing your conference talk (and therefore included in it) that will help make each talk a positive milestone in your career.
For whatever reasons, I feel like researchers have steered away from Facebook as a research-communication medium. I’m not sure why. Maybe timing? Or how it grew? Regardless, I think it has HEAPS to offer. In fact, if you are thinking of promoting your research on a social media platform, Facebook should be at the top of your list. So, If you’re thinking of setting up a Facebook account (and I know you now are) this podcast is for you. I’ll present current usage stats for the platform, the kinds of people using it, what they use it for and when. It’ll be all you need to know to start building your Facebook content strategy. And yes, you can set up separate “work” and “personal” accounts.
At a careers session at Monash University, I got asked some really great questions. So, I thought I'd ask and answer them again here so everyone can benefit.
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/qa-from-bsc-students-2/
One of the most overlooked steps in the PhD process is topic selection. I’ll go through how potential applicants might choose a topic. Importantly, I’ll also look at factors that influence topic such as where you live, where you are willing to study and what your background is. If you’re thinking of doing a PhD attend. And, even if you have already chosen a topic attend – there’ll be stuff in here you can apply even if your enrolled.
If you’re thinking of setting up an Instagram account and what to use it to communicate your research, this podcast is for you. I’ll present current usage stats for the platform, the kinds of people using it, what they use it for, and when. It’ll be all you need to know to start building your Instagram content strategy. And yes, you can set up separate “work” and “personal” accounts.
So often I hear “What program should I use to write my thesis?”. And like photographers say, the best camera is the one you have with you, the best program to write your thesis with is the one you have. Most people have MS Word. Yet, many overlook it for other programs (e.g. Scrivener). Or worse, they persist with MS Word but don’t use all of the available functionality.
COVID19 has impacted us all in many ways. For some, it has meant a shift in research focus. Our workload has increased. Funding has increased. It’s a case of all hands on deck. However, for most work has shifted. So you might think it is time to find a new job, or perhaps you just want to ensure your CV is up-to-date. There are many types of CV – academic, industry, grant.
Four apps that I use to help me run my practice. Gmail (but maybe moving to Outlook). Hubspot for managing customers, clients and collaborators. ASANA to manage projects, and tasks. Evernote for taking notes and capturing business card details.
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/four-apps-that-i-use-2/
There are many skills that I developed during my PhD that have been useful beyond it. In this video I go through several, as well as suggest some things you could do to prepare for your life beyond your PhD or current role.
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/skills-for-beyond-my-phd-2/
Is a PhD dangerous outside academia? Potentially - we have problems for every solution. Not to mention an potentially over analytical and over critical mindset....
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/dangers-of-a-phd-outside-academia-2/
What do I do? I help people getting a PhD or those who already have a PhD answer the question "What next?".
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/i-answer-the-question-what-next-2/
Three grant writing tips: (1) know the policy context for the grant or proposal you are writing. (2) Prepare early. Know what you want to do before you write the application. Maintain an up-to-date version of this information. (3) Get a non-expert reviewer to review your grant. They'll find the areas of implied knowledge or jargon that others people won't understand.
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/three-grant-writing-tips-2/
If you really want to make something a success - e.g. moving from academia to industry - tell people your plans. It'll (1) make you accountable; and (2) help you get access to new opportunities from the people you tell and as you improve the way you express your message.
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/telling-people-about-your-plans/
How did I transition from academia to self-employed? In this video I cover the "insurance" I had, the people that supported me and the experiences that facilitated my success.
When I left academia, there were a few things that I felt really helped me. At the time they weren't things that are necessarily deliberate, but now, looking back, I can see their value.....
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/three-things-that-set-me-up-to-transition-out-of-academia-2/
How and why LinkedIn is such a powerful tool for establishing research collaborations with industry partners.
On the surface, it might not seem like a company such as the Royal District Nursing Service or what are now known as Bolton Clark might have much in common with say a mining company...
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/translation-and-funding-linkedin-2/
In this audio, I cover off five different points of failure within PhD programs and how you might address them.
In the work that I do, I'm often asked to help build PhD programs. As a result, I've done a fair bit of work research into published research or looking at the published research around what makes a good PhD program, and conversely what could cause a PhD program to fail......
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/five-points-of-phd-program-failure-2/
As a PhD student you should always be thinking about what next. In this video I cover four things that helped me beyond my PhD. For me they were:
1. The PhD itself. My line of work means I need to have empathy with researchers. My PhD helps me do that.
2. Mentors. From across the range of life and experiences. Family and friends (not in academia) were always helpful. As well as people at my part-time work place (department store).
3. A Job. Demonstrating that I was employable but also giving me selling skills (I had a role on the sales floor) as well as what it meant to work with "clients".
4. Networks. I kept (keep) in touch with people from various times in my life and various careers. Its super easy with social media. And it is those networks that help me when I am looking for opportunities (and of course I pay it forward).
So what are the some of the experiences that you can have or that you can focus on as perhaps a PhD student that might help you with your career beyond your PhD? For me, there were probably four things that I think we're really important.....
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/experiences-for-beyond-your-phd-2/
Short video about correct language to use for effective communication.
What language do you use to communicate your work. Is it complex? Is there jargon?....
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/correct-language-2/
On this 30 second audio, Richard give 2 tips on writing thesis faster.
Two things to help writing your thesis faster:
The first. Plan your thesis structure outline etc.....
Link to full transcript, you can find it here:
Four things that got me out of my academic career and onto the path of an entrepreneur. From mentors, to networks,, to work experience, to empathy with academics. Oh, not to mention a barking dog and car trying to start...
Four things that got me where I am today. I guess the first thing to really know is that my PhD gave me the experience doing research. The credibility with researchers to some extent. I know about the life of an academic.....
Link to full transcript, you can find it here:
One of the biggest problems in a PhD program is lack of students. More students means greater peer support. More students also means many events and activities are more cost effective (or less dollars per student).
Quick tip. If you're building a PhD program, don't be scared of having a large number of students......
Link to full transcript, you can find it here:
Knowing what you want to do - at any stage in life - is hard. In this video I talk about how I made the decision to switch from an academic career to a non-academic career. I also cover some of the things that made it possible/easier both as a PhD student, as well as earlier in life.
Suit coat or lab coat?
That was always going to be a big question for me. Looking back, I can see that from an early age I had been an entrepreneur. Bulk buying lollies and selling them at school, washing cars, mowing lawns, selling notes I took in class. I even ironed the cash I got (before it was plastic and melted which I learnt the hard way).......
Link to full transcript, you can find it here: https://www.drrichardhuysmans.com/suit-coat-or-lab-coat-2/
Sometimes working in an academic institution can feel like a tug-of-war. With competing priorities pulling in multiple different directions. However, there are a small number of cases when you can get priorities to align. One such case is the use of international university ranking schemes. I’ll recap how various schemes calculate their rankings and then take a look at the actions individual researchers can take to make the most of the situation.
University ranking schemes are like stars – there are lots around, but we really only pay attention to the ones that are the brightest. And like stars, there are small number of ranking schemes that have a disproportionally large impact on our lives. For example – did you know some governments base funding decisions on ranking schemes? Or that certain universities are precluded from support due to their international ranking? Or that Instagram influencers are encouraging their followers to look at ranking schemes as a way to select a university to attend?
Even though the Nobel Prizes cannot be awarded to teams; even though students cannot be supervised by researchers from multiple universities; even though systems prevent data sharing outside organisations; there’s an expectation that collaboration – across universities – happens. So, how do you go about these collaborations when so much of the system and process makes collaborations difficult?
It is one thing to find an industry partner – but how do you set up a successful partnership? How do you turn a good idea into something that works on paper and then works in real life? What parts are important to get right at the start, and what can be figured out as you go?
Industry partners are an essential part of academic research in the 21st century. If the moniker was “publish or perish” it is now “partner AND publish or perish”. But, where do you find these partners? Who are they? What if your research seems to not lend itself to industry partners?
Without doubt, academic researchers are experts in their field. But, in so many cases non-academics are selected as experts. Experts when it comes to talking to the media. Experts when it comes to acting on panels. Experts when it comes to consulting. So, if you’re interested in being positioned as an expert – how do you do it? How can you become a go to person in your area of expertise?
Academic research is still, fundamentally, about publishing good research and getting grants to fund good research. However, “publishing” is now a very broad term. And “grants” can come from almost anywhere.
If you’re not on social media, you are not translating your research – it is as simple as that. But, being on social media doesn’t mean you are translating your research. There are so many scenarios and alternatives within each option it can be paralysing to even make a start!
A mentor should be someone who can show you the way through things. They may not have THE answer, but they probably have AN answer. A bit like a Sherpa helps people up mountains. They cannot climb the mountain for you, but they can give you the best advice and support about how to climb.
The decision to become an academic researcher is often based on passion for science or research. And although leaving any profession is hard, the decision to leave academia is often a tough one. There are often conflicting emotions concerning staying or leaving. Not to mention the conversations with staff, students and colleagues. And sometimes it can feel like trying to leave a maze.
PhD graduates are clearly capable of doing many things beyond the running of an individual research project. However, that is not always obvious to their potential employers. Here, I look at how to track, record and build transferable skills developed in your PhD or research career, so they can be made "accessible" to your potential non-academic employers.
Virtual teams, or my preferred term – distributed teams – have come into prominence as a result of many governments implementing physical distancing measures to curb the transmission of COVID-19. However, virtual teams have been in operation for many years. Banks and utilities have had personnel placed across the globe for varying functions for the last decade. IT firms have used the value of differing time zones across the globe to enable projects to progress continuously over a 24 hour period.
Whether it is a global pandemic or broken machinery, there are times when doing experiments might not be possible. In this webinar, Richard go through some of the things you could do when collecting data is not possible. We also hear from participants – about their go to things to do when they cannot do their experiments.
It is no longer enough to offer “just a PhD program”. Universities and their faculties, colleges, schools and departments all need to prepare PhD graduates for the workforce. And not just the research or academic workforce, but the wider workforce. We know that 50% of PhD graduates will immediately go onto a non-academic career, and fewer than 10% will end up in academia long term. So, it is time we started preparing students for that reality.
According to research from the UK, 2/3 of final year PhD students are unclear on what they want to do after their PhD. And about 1/3 (30%) of PhD graduates would not do the their PhD again. I think the two are linked. That not know what you want to do next means you get a job that may or may not value your PhD.
Across all areas of training there are essentially five streams of work:
(1) Practitioner – doing the work you were trained to do.
(2) Researcher – investigating a topic of interest. As an academic you are simultaneously a Practitioner and a Researcher
(3) Educator – Training others based on your skills, experience and training.
(4) Management – Overseeing the work of others.
(5) Policy – Implementing and organising how work happens. Of course the streams aren’t mutually exclusive and they have different levels of experience and expertise within them.
Social media is a key part of your research communication arsenal. Facebook is the largest social network. It has more than 2.4 billion active users. But what does it mean to a researcher? How can you get access to a small slice of that attention? In this webinar Richard goes through some of the things to consider when using Facebook for your research and factors that might make Facebook more or less successful.
Getting funding as a researcher – let alone an early career researcher or PhD student – is increasingly difficult. And everyone is being encouraged to get an industry partner. But how do you know what they want? Especially for biomedical sciences where drug discovery takes YEARS and heaps of money? In this webinar I’ll look at how you can identify what you have to offer beyond the obvious “your research expertise”.
Increasingly academics and researchers more broadly are being asked to participate in social media. Sometimes it is about engagement, sometimes translation and other times simply to communicate. A good place for researchers to start is blogging. But what does that involve?
Strategy and planning are common outside research. Increasingly business-based approaches are being applied to research. Not just applied, but required. Take, for example, applications for new centres and institutes. Not to mention large national competitive grants. Smaller research groups are now also applying strategic planning approaches to facilitate progress.
Working through a series of facilitated workshops, I help researchers understand the strategic planning process and build an implementable plan for success.
Prolific writing is essential to success as an academic. And it is also likely necessary for success in any career beyond your PhD. In this webinar I go through some of the things you can do to improve your writing. I also look at some techniques you can use to get more written on a regular basis. And, like all webinars I run, there some chat about the challenges people face.
Social media is a key part of your research communication arsenal. Twitter is one of the largest social networks. It has more than 300 million active users. But what does it mean to a researcher? How can you get access to a small slice of that attention? In this webinar Richard goes through some of the things to consider when using Twitter for your research and factors that might make Twitter more or less successful.
There are many technology options for project management in research. In this webinar we take a quick look at some that are out there and why you might use one over another. We also look at some of the different project management approaches and their suitability to different technology platforms.
COVID-19 is causing many governments to enforce social isolation measures. Success as an academic or PhD might, at times require social isolation. However, it is not cool when everyone else is forced to be at home with us. So, how are you coping? What are you doing? What work are you able to focus on solely from home? How will it impact your PhD? What about your research?
In this community-led discussion a forum for these questions to be asked and answered.
Getting funding as a researcher – let alone an early career researcher or PhD student – is increasingly difficult. Particularly in the form of competitive grants. However, one source that remains somewhat untapped and under utilised is industry-funded research. In order to get access to industry funds, researchers need to find partners.
On this episode of TYP, Craig chats with Dr. Richard Huysmans about all things learning, upskilling, research, business development, career change, academia and the trauma of Craig’s first semester of University (at 36). The lads explore everything from getting back into study (as an adult) and navigating the terror and confusion of becoming a student (again), through to the many levels of learning from the ‘Google Classroom’ all the way up to gaining a PhD in something you’re passionate about. So inspired was Craig, that (with Richard’s guidance) he’s thinking about tackling a PhD in Philosophy (his passion), using his work as the basis for his thesis and area of research.
Dr. Richard Huysmans joined the show to discuss how to develop and nurture relationships with industry. These relationships will lead to more well-rounded mentoring for your students, more research collaboration opportunities and possible sponsorship of you work. How do you start? Ask your senior mentors to introduce you to their industry collaborators. Develop a LinkedIn profile where you talk about what you are passionate about in your research life. Avoid jargon on social media platforms if your intent is to connect with members of industry. Project the type of collaborator that you want to work with onto those platforms.
According to research from the UK, 2/3 of final year PhD students are unclear on what they want to do after their PhD. And about 1/3 (30%) of PhD graduates would not do the their PhD again. In this webinar we’ll take a look at the academic and non-academic job application process and some of the things you can do to increase your chances of success.
As a research strategist, Dr. Richard Huysmans is an expert in helping researchers get the best out of their training, their research and their career. He is focused on research translation and together with Jane Anderson, is the only consultant training researchers How to make their LinkedIn profile (research) translation ready, for greater research impact and industry engagement.
PhD students have some of the highest rates of mental fatigue of any part of the research system. Some studies even show PhD students as having the worst mental health of all professions and students. Why is this the case? And what can the sector do about it? We look at some of the data on mental health in research as well as tools, tips and techniques students, supervisors and colleagues can employ to be more resilient at work and in life.
CV writing is not something you need to do every day, not even every year. And some people might be lucky enough that they never need to write a CV. But, if you have to write one it can be tough to know what is in or what is out. Or, if you’re applying for jobs and getting little feedback it’s hard to know what’s wrong with your CV.
One of the best ways to translate your research into practice is to work directly with an industry partner. But one of the hardest things to do is find a partner interested in the work you do or the knowledge you have. We look at how a research might find potential industry partners.
We often talk about strategy and strategic planning? But what does it actually mean? This webinar gives a brief introduction to strategic planning, and covers one of its key components – environmental scanning.
We often talk about strategy and strategic planning? But what does it actually mean? In this webinar I’ll give a brief introduction to strategic planning and then cover one of its key components – SWOT analysis (also known as Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats).
Average completion times for a PhD vary, but most data suggests at least four years (full time) as an average. In some cases, the average completion time is more than seven years! So, how can we reduce that time. Short of doing more work or more hours (which I do not recommend), or being more organised what else can be done to reduce the time it takes to finish your PhD?
Increasingly researchers are expected to develop and manage their own personal brand. This can (and does) cover many aspects of online and offline life. Initially, it began with social media. But websites have decreased in price and increased in accessibility so it’s now reasonable – and easy – to have you own! But how do you do that? Where do you start? And hat is important?
LinkedIn is the only social media network dedicated to work-related activities. As such, it has a unique place for academics in connecting with industry. In this webinar I’ll go through why you might use LinkedIn and the things to do to get the most of out it as an academic.
Social media is a key part of your research communication arsenal. Instagram one of the fastest growing social networks in terms of percentage of people who use it in Australia. It has more than 1 billion active users. But what does it mean to a researcher? How can you get access to a small slice of that attention?