As a member of Imperial, you can access and use LinkedIn learning, the online platform that provides high-quality training videos covering a multitude of subjects, from software to specific skills. You can find more information on how to register here: LinkedIn Learning.

The PFDC will signpost videos or courses that you might find useful in your current and future career, with a focus on a different theme each month.

Months

May - Communication

paper speech bubble

May - Communication

Communication is a skill that is fundamental to any career path. The way you communicate will change depending on your role, the person you are communicating with, your needs and your communication media.
Here are some reflections on how to be a better listener, aligning your communication intention with the impact you want to have, and some good practice on how to better communicate through different channels.
You can also access the links here: Listening and communicatingAlign intention and impactListening actively

June - Leadership

paper boatsJune - Leadership

Regardless of your career path, you will need to develop leadership skills. You might not become a group leader or a team manager and have a more informal leadership role, but developing these skills will support you in your career ambitions.

One of the key skills of an effective leader is building relationships, as these form the basis of your connections across your workplace, in a formal or informal leading position. It is also important to understand your leadership style, how you come across to your team and some other top leadership characteristics. Find out how to use your personality to lead your team to success through self-awareness and reflection.

July - Networking

People standing on glass floorJuly - Networking

Networking is the basis of many collaborations, new projects or even new job opportunities, but different people respond to different styles of networking, and in the current situation this might be challenging due to the lack of face-to-face events.

Follow up with your existing contacts, making it a regular habit. You can also use different social media to make new contacts. And remember: if you do get the chance to go somewhere for a brief period of time, then take advantage of this by keeping all the connections you made in that new place.

September - Time management

clock close upSeptember - Time management

As the new academic year resumes you might have additional responsibilities taking up time. As an early career researcher time is one of your most precious commodities so you should be keeping a good balance between Work and Home time. 

In your work, some things might feel difficult to prioritise so you can strive to make the distinction between urgent and important. When you are allocating time for your tasks are these slots clear or are you in danger of multitasking? Remember: Saying no, negotiating, delegating, optimising your systems and avoiding perfectionism are great strategies to control your time  – but are you using these effectively?

October - Strengthening your mental health during times of change

people stretchingOctober - Strengthening your mental health during times of change 

Mental and physical wellbeing are interlinked, and they can work synergistically. In times of uncertainty, it is essential to prioritise and protect your mental wellbeing so that you can build resilience and adapt to the pressures of changing times.

 As an early career researcher adapting to - and creating - new routines in our ‘new normal’; it can be tempting to work more and move less. However, your mental health and productivity can be improved through regular exercise – to help relieve stress, improve memory, sleep better, and boost your overall mood. 

Ultimately, strengthening your mental wellbeing will help you prepare for what could happen, but adapt to whatever that happens.

November - Develop Your Career Plan: Reflect – Research - Review

blackboard and writing in chalkNovember - Develop Your Career Plan: Reflect – Research - Review

Setting time apart to develop your career plan can be challenging, especially when you are balancing teaching, supervision, and research responsibilities. Time does fly and if you allow it, your career can be relegated to the bottom of your list of priorities.  

As an early career researcher, it is essential that you set time apart on a fortnight or monthly basis to evaluate your options, seek out opportunities; fuel your creativity; reflect on what success means to you; and set/review long term goals that are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound).

Ultimately, your career plan will help you reflect on where you are now and where you want to be in 1, 2- or 5-years’ time.

December - Emotional intelligence

emotional intelligenceEmotional intelligence (or EQ) is the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, while communicating effectively and being empathetic with others.

In essence, your emotional intelligence determines how you interact with others – and although it is different from your personality type it allows you to understand how to you express yourself positively when communicating with others.  In addition to your skills, developing your emotional intelligence will allow you to stand out among your peers, and gain tools to build collaborative relationships.

Finally, your continued growth in terms of your EQ, will help you navigate conflict or other challenging situations by learning a simple process to take control of your thoughts, feelings and emotions, defuse conflict and overcome challenging situations.

January - Uncover your Strength

strengthAs a Researcher, it is important to spend time on things that make you unique - your strengths, which includes your gifts, loves and skills – and then work out how to grow them.

A good growth strategy for your strengths, would be to identify what you do best through self-discovery, and then spend more time developing those strengths - with focus on how to  grow them.

Combining your natural gifts (effortless abilities), loves (passion/fun activities), and skills (knowledge and capabilities acquired over time) will help you effectively market yourself and develop a successful career based on your strengths.