Academic leadership – going beyond scientific excellence
Academic researchers are under constant pressure to deliver scientific results and get grants approved for funding. While most academic centers have extensive training with regard to the scientific process such as PhD programs, postgraduate courses and lectures in place, one tends to ignore formal training of scientists regarding academic leadership. At CMM we have decided to change this situation.
Since 2006 we offer a formalized one-year onsite leadership program geared specifically towards scientists in the biomedical field. The background is the observation that the research conducted in the area of molecular medicine is increasingly global and translational, involving large teams of scientists from different fields and levels. The goals of our program are to facilitate interaction between different disciplines and cultures, to create new networks within CMM and to develop collaborative as well as individual leadership skills. It is our long-term ambition that this program will strengthen the role of CMM as an incubator for tomorrow’s leaders in biomedicine. To achieve these goals we have created a novel program. 10-12 participants per year are selected following an application procedure. The selection is based not only on scientific merit. We also look at the motivation to participate, and try to achieve a range of academic levels (from post doctoral to full professor) and experience among participants. We also aim to include individuals that are located on different floors of the foundation building and encourage clinical scientists that often have their primary appointment outside the CMM.
The program starts yearly in early September and extends over approximately 9 months. It encompasses individual training sessions with a coach as well as group sessions every three weeks, with homework in-between. At the outset, participants are challenged with defining their yearly goals at the personal level, be they social, educational or obviously scientific. They are also presented with tasks assigned by the management and the Board of CMM. These tasks are designed to improve the quality of CMM as a research structure and the participants are also invited to propose new ideas in this area. Group sessions every three weeks consist of work-shops and follow-up of the CMM-tasks. In addition, group work-shops are boosted by discussion seminars held with high-ranking speakers from academia, industry and philanthropic organizations. These seminars provide models of success in leadership, and inspire to use those models for training of relevant personal leadership skills. In all, participants are expected to spend around 100 hours during nine months on the program.
The individual component of the CMM Leadership Program derives from a management development program from Leadership Management International (LMI), called Effective Personal Leadership. Individual and group coaching is delivered by Aleksander Marlevi, an LMI licensed management coach from Next Peak.
As leaders and creators of this program we would like to share our experience with other centers to evolve the program and ultimately be part of a process that goes beyond a single program. If interested, please contact Martin Schalling, Aleksander Marlevi or Anna Persson (contact information to the right)