Interested in our workshops?
Please note that due to increasing interest, our workshops typically need to be booked four to six months in advance. Book early to guarantee that you will get the dates you want.
Nearly all of our workshops are offered 'on site' at client organizations for their employees and staff. If you are interested in hosting one or more of our workshops at your organization please contact us here.
A limited number of our workshops are offered on an 'open registration' basis. Included in this group is the annual Cold Spring Harbor workshop on Leadership in Bioscience. Other open enrollment workshops such as these held in the Fall of 2016, will be listed in our "News" tab as they are announced.
What do scientists who take our workshops say?
Out of 100 scientists who took our "Negotiation" workshop (Workshop 1) recently, 98 said that the skills they learned will be "very" or "extremely" useful in their daily work; 94 of 100 said that they would "recommend" or"strongly recommend" that their co-workers take the workshop.
Out of 100 scientists who took the "Leading scientific team and project meetings"workshop (Workshop 2) recently, 99 said that the skills learned in the workshop wold be "very" or "extremely" useful in their jobs; 98 out of 100 said that they would be "very" or "extremely" likely to recommend the workshop to their co-workers.
About our workshops
All of our workshops are based upon Dr. Cohen’s popular book “Lab Dynamics: Management and Leadership Skills for Scientists.” These are not "generic" workshops - they are specifically designed for working scientists, managers and leaders by a scientist. The case studies and examples used in the workshops are taken from the world of science and address situations and interactions that scientists face every day. Using a pragmatic, solution focused approach, the workshops show scientists how to become more effective in their jobs.
All of our workshops can be modified or customized to meet specific client needs. Past customizations have included a focus on scientists in the pharmaceutical industry and on scientists in academic or governmental research institutes. Workshops can also be targeted to scientists at different stages of advancement, e.g. graduate students, post-docs, faculty, team leaders, project managers and senior leadership.
1. Difficult conversations in the research workplace: Fundamentals of negotiation
Also called: NEGOTIATION AND CONFLICT RESOLUTION FOR SCIENTISTS
Full day workshop
A workshop for scientists, researchers and research managers
This is our core workshop and is usually considered to be a pre-requisite for all of our other workshops.
Is learning negotiation important? Here is a quote from a Sigma Xi study of post-doc productivity (sample size was 8500):
"Training in negotiation skills is associated with a 19% increase in the rate of paper submissions. Negotiation skills may help postdocs to obtain resources needed for their research, as 50% of those reporting negotiation skills training are completely satisfied with the funds available for research and travel, compared
with 39% of those without such training."
So much of what takes place every day in the lab or in science team meetings involves resolving differences of opinion or accommodating multiple viewpoints in complex scientific discussions. Often such discussions engender strong emotions, leading the participants to engage in counterproductive behaviors. At times the scientific discussion can get derailed by emotion laden interchanges, and projects can be hampered or even halted.
2. Leading Scientific team and project Meetings
A workshop for science and research managers, team leaders and executives
Half-day ( e.g. 8:30 AM- noon) or half-day "plus" (8:30 AM - 2:30 PM) depending on content
When team or project meetings are run well they can be an invaluable tool for communicating information and making decisions in the science workplace. When run poorly they can be a source of frustration. In this solution-focused half day workshop you will learn and practice the key elements of running productive and interactive team or project meetings in the science workplace.
3. Hiring and retaining your science team: Interviewing, selecting and orienting scientists, technical staff and managers.
One of the most challenging aspects of running a lab or department is the hiring of new post-docs, professional staff and technical personnel. So many times this is a process that is guided mostly by our “gut” feeling of who is the right candidate. And so many times we end up regretting decisions made in this way. Since hiring decisions have such a profound effect on productivity and scientific advancement, it makes sense that we should use discipline and methodology to guide our intuition.
In this half-day workshop, you will learn how to organize the selection and hiring process so that you get the data you need to make an informed hiring decision. You will learn why over reliance on selecting for technical skills and qualifications can lead you to make poor hiring decisions. You will learn and practice using a simple question-based approach to assessing a candidate’s all-important “personal characteristics,” such as their ability to hear and use feedback, their ability to manage setbacks and adversity, and their ability to manage disagreements and conflict. You will receive instruction on and practice in how to conduct candidate phone screens, and face-to-face interviews; and on how to ‘listen between the lines’ during phone reference checks so that you can accurately evaluate both technical skills and personal characteristics. Finally, you will learn how to make sure you retain good people once you hire them.
In combination with our popular half-day workshop “Managing your science team: Feedback, goal setting and performance review for scientists” these workshops provide a comprehensive one-day “boot camp” for scientists at all levels of advancement on how to attract, motivate and retain the best scientific staff possible.
4. MANAGING YOUR SCIENCE TEAM: SETTING GOALS, GIVING FEEDBACK AND EVALUATING SCIENTISTS
A workshop for science and research managers, team leaders and executives
Setting goals and giving feedback can be powerful tools for keeping scientists focused and motivated. Scientists at all levels want and need to hear how they’re doing from their mentors, managers or leaders. In this highly interactive half day workshop you will learn and practice how to set meaningful goals for scientists, how to give effective and useful feedback and how to conduct performance reviews that help keep projects and people on track.
4A. Mentoring and managing: Setting goals, giving feedback and creating individual development plans for scientists-in-training.
A half-day workshop for science managers and supervisors
Funding agencies are increasingly requiring that scientists in management or leadership positions receive training in mentoring graduate students, postdocs and other types of trainees. Like being a good manager, being a good mentor requires time and effort on the part of scientists in management positions. But the payoff is significant – well mentored trainees are motivated and productive and can contribute significantly to the productivity of a research group. This workshop is adapted from our Workshop 4 (Managing your science team) and expands upon it by introducing tools that are critical for creating and maintaining good mentoring relationships. The workshop uses team-based discussion, group exercises and role playing to enable participants to practice behaviors associated with excellent mentoring.
5. A day OF LAB DYNAMICS
A one-day workshop in essential skills for science managers and leaders
Full day workshop
This is a highly interactive two-part day long workshop based upon Dr Cohen’s popular book “Lab Dynamics: Management and Leadership Skills for Scientists.” The morning session consists of a condensed version of our full day Workshop 1, "Difficult conversations in the research workplace: Fundamentals of negotiation" and the afternoon session is either Workshop 2, "Leading scientific team and project meetings" or Workshop 3, "Managing your science team:Setting goals, giving feedback and evaluating scientists." This is not a generic workshop – it is specifically focused on interactions which scientists have every day — discussing data, negotiating budgets or project plans, receiving and giving scientific criticism and dealing with interpersonal conflicts in the lab.
6. Leading Pharmaceutical Project Teams
Half-day "plus" workshop (8:30 AM- 2:30 PM)
A workshop for science and research managers, team leaders and executives in the pharmaceutical industry
Project teams are powerful tools for accomplishing tasks requiring interdisciplinary input. Yet they are also a source of frustration when not managed properly. It is becoming increasingly clear that managing a project in a matrix-based organization requires more than just project management skills, it requires a high degree of emotional intelligence. This is a solution-focused “half day plus” workshop that expands upon the workshop "Leading Science Meetings."
7. Speaking of science: presenting your science and yourself. Speaking and presentation skills for scientists
A workshop for scientists
Half day workshop.
Speaking to an audience about your research or your lab is about more than the slides you show and the data you present. It is also, and at times, primarily, about how you come across to the audience—do you seem nervous or relaxed, are you looking at your audience or at your notes? How you come across can be just as important as what you say.
8. The front lines of science: Management and leadership challenges in the science workplace. A peer learning workshop
Basic or introductory management workshops are just the ticket for early or mid-career scientists. More senior people benefit from peer learning where experiences and insights can be shared and brought to bear on common problems and challenges. Looking for a new learning experience for your seasoned scientific team leaders and managers? Look no further.
9: Best Foot Forward, Part 1: Interviewing Skills for Postdocs
Half day workshop
Whether you are looking for a position in academia or at a biotech company, at some point in the process you’re going to be sitting across from someone asking you questions about yourself and your work. How you answer those questions and how you come across during the interview process will have as much and likely more influence on the hiring decision than your research or publication history. Going into a job interview believing that your resume and publications speak for themselves is a recipe for disappointment.
10. Best Foot Forward Part 2: How to give a great job talk
Half day workshop
Do you know the crucial difference between a job talk and a research seminar? And even if you do know the difference will your job talk be a help or a hinderance to your candidacy?
Giving a job talk is about far more than the slides you show and the data you present. Many scientists mistakenly believe that all they need to do is present stellar research results to clinch a job offer. In doing so they forget the cardinal rule of recruiting— people hire people, not research projects. How you present yourself and your information is every bit as important, and sometimes more important, than what you’re presenting. If you fail to come across as collegial, responsive to questions and interested in what others in the department or company are up to you may as well not give a talk at all.
11. management skills for scientists: OUR MOST POPULAR TWO-DAY "crash course" for scientists and science leaders.
Two Day Workshop (consecutive days or separated in time)
This is a two day workshop incorporating the most popular elements of workshops 1, 2, 3 and 4 above. This series provides a comprehensive experiential learning experience for scientists, and existing or emerging managers and leaders.
Morning: Workshop 1. Difficult conversations in the research workplace: Fundamentals of negotiation
Afternoon: Workshop 2. Leading scientific team and project meetings
Morning: Hiring and retaining your science team: Interviewing, selecting and orienting scientists, technical staff and managers.
Afternoon: Managing your science team: Setting goals, giving feedback and evaluating scientists.
12. Leadership For Scientists
A workshop for scientists making the transition into management or leadership positions
This is a highly interactive two and a half to three day workshop in which participants learn and develop the skills to lead and interact effectively with others in the scientific workplace. This workshop is modeled after the Cold Spring Harbor Leadership in Bioscience workshop that Dr Cohen has run since 2011. These workshops are highly interactive, utilizing role playing, and team exercises. The workshop focuses on techniques, situations and challenges that relate specifically to leading and managing in the scientific workplace. It is appropriate for scientists in both the academic and private sectors.
13. Just for Postdocs: The skills you need to jump start your career in science.
This is a three day comprehensive sequence to prepare your postdocs for making the transition to a successful career in academia or industry. The sequence consists of six highly interactive half day workshops that will give postdocs the skills they need to get the job they want and to become productive scientists, managers and leaders.
What workshop participants say
Interested in any of our workshops? Get in touch to learn more or to sign up.