Friday, February 24
CS13 Career and Personal Development Fri, Feb 24, 3:45 PM - 5:15 PM
River Terrace 2

Soft Skills for Succeeding Outside of Academia (303318)

*Diahanna L Post, Nielsen 

Keywords: leadership, development, organizations

Statisticians and researchers within organizations (business, non-profit, government) are often frustrated by the fact that their analyses are not used often enough in organizational decisions. How can you ensure that data-driven recommendations get the proper attention and influence? This presentation is geared both toward newly-hired statisticians as well as those who have been in an organization for some time and are wondering how to proceed to the next level. For career development, I will focus on two key soft skills I have found essential to succeeding in my career in business and government: networking and stakeholder management. Networking refers to establishing both strategic and operational networks within the organization that can help you get things done day to day (operational) and also help you see the big picture and decide where you should focus your efforts (strategic). Stakeholder management refers to the need to understand the motives of the various people who have an influence on whether your recommendations will be accepted, and deciding how to engage them to be most effective. For those who are moving into management, I will discuss effective strategies for developing and coaching people, especially highly technical teams. I will draw on the academic and business literature to lay out core principles in these areas, such as the need for establishing both strategic and operational networks. I will supplement this with real-life examples drawn from my professional and teaching experience.