Leading through development
Grants and Awards | April 15, 2021

A recent recipient of the CBNS Career Development Award, CBNS postdoctorate researcher Dr Paulina Ramírez-García used the grant to complete the Leading Edge program for aspiring and early-career female leaders facilitated by Women & Leadership Australia.

“I decided to enrol in this program because I realised that group leaders face a difficult task: They must be able to engage with team members, maintain the productivity of the team and help team members to thrive while fulfilling all other responsibilities that come with the position. Scientists, in general, do not receive any type of training on how to lead a team and we devote most of our training to develop the skills to look for solutions or answers to scientific questions, execute complex laboratory techniques and analysis. Unfortunately, leadership skills are neither our expertise nor something we would normally think of when we want to expand our skills.”

Paulina said, “During my PhD and now as a postdoc, I have been able to appreciate the profound impact that a leader or supervisor can have on a career. That is why I decided to look for leadership training because I think it is as necessary as developing scientific skills. I found the Leading Edge program for aspiring and early career female leaders and thanks to CBNS, my supervisors and Women & Leadership Australia, I was able to enrol in the program. It was a 4-months online program designed to equip females with the knowledge and behavioural insights required for successful leadership.

Paulina found that the program helped her to gain insights on what is needed to become successful, but most importantly, an inspiring leader and made her change the way she sees science. She knows that publications, impact factors and authorships matter but now she knows that there are also more things to consider. “If we promote a caring culture in our laboratories, the benefits are countless, being increased productivity of the team just the tip of the iceberg.”