If you master the art of presenting, conferences and symposia become places where you strengthen your position in academia and where you create new opportunities. This training deals with all ingredients of a good presentation: contents, structure, slides, stress, interaction with your audience, and answering questions.
NWO/ERC interview training
Did you receive the invitation to an interview at NWO or ERC? This means you are an excellent researcher with a brilliant proposal. As your competitors are. In this final stage of the procedure details really matter. A thorough preparation is of vital importance. We would love to help you with that.
Slides can make or brake a presentation. Well-designed slides help you to explain your ideas and create more impact. Unfortunately in many instances the opposite happens. Creating slides that work is not only about the functionalities of PowerPoint, but also about sharpening your ideas and translating them into visuals.
Being a little nervous is part of presenting. It is a natural stress reaction to an uncomfortable situation. However, sometimes stress levels increase to such an extend that clear thinking (or thinking at all) becomes impossible. This can hamper the convincing performance you would like to give. A black out on a conference can be a bad experience. During an interview it can ruin your chances. Fortunately, you can learn to deal with stage fright.
The poster session is a standard part of most academic conferences. Participation offers you the opportunity to showcase your research to a select, but highly relevant audience. However, it is important that your poster will be seen, read and remembered. To that end you need clear choices about what to add and what to leave out, an attractive design and appealing texts.
Networking in academia
As an academic researcher you will benefit from a strong network. When in need of (external) expertise, research partners, knowledge, when you want to disseminate your ideas, when you seek inspiration, or a shoulder to cry on, or when you want to take the next step in your career, you will reap the benefits of the time and energy you invested in making and maintaining contacts.
Communication styles, allergies and feedback
Communication with others is part of your job. On a given day you might encounter your boss, your intern, your roommate, the secretary of the institute, and your spouse. If you want to reach your career goals you are depending on how well you are able to receive or give feedback, make people do what you want them to do, and create a supporting environment. Knowledge on communication styles can help you with that.
Funding agencies, universities and researchers feel an increasing urgency to communicate with the broader public. Increasing your visibility on social media and via radio, television and written media can contribute to your success as a researcher. At the same time it takes a lot of time and it can be a risky enterprise. Know what you’re getting yourself into.
Blogging about your research
If you want to work on your visibility inside and outside academia, starting a blog proves to be the most accessible medium. You decide what you write and when you publish it. Within your own boundaries you can experiment with form and content. Blogging also can be a means of improving your ideas and writing skills. It will also help you to increase your network.
Pitching to a broad audience
Presenting your research to a laymen audience is quite different then presenting on a conference. Most likely your audience has no prior knowledge about your field or specialism, they are easily distracted, and sometimes they have a negative attitude towards academics. At the same time, presenting on a festival, a science café or in a class full of toddlers can be an amazing experience, that even has a positive influence on your research.