Oct 5 – 8, 2015
Bahrenfeld Campus ( DESY)
Europe/Berlin timezone

Skills workshops

Please note: The number of places for the soft skills workshops is limited, and registered members of the PIER Helmholtz Graduate School have privileged access. The allocation of the available places follows the "first come, first served" principle. Your registration for the skills workshops therefore is pending until the final confirmation from the organisers, which will be e-mailed to you after the end of the registration deadline in early September.

Workshop 1. Leadership Skills
Research science, by its very nature, is a collaborative venture. Being able to lead a team, motivate people and negotiate positive outcomes are skills essential in order to progress from a PhD level. Having a PhD means that you are going to be in a leadership position soon.

The scientific environment, in both academia and industry, creates its own particular set of challenges, as the teams are made up of highly intelligent, independent and innovative men and women. In such an environment, excellent leadership, motivational and negotiation skills are essential in order to ensure full use of all available talents and so achieve the appropriate success.

This workshop will cover how to motivate and persuade people, when it is appropriate to use authority, negotiating win-win outcomes, creating a “can-do” attitude and environment and dealing with conflict as well as conflicting motivations and goals.Participants will learn how to provide strong leadership and strong arguments when necessary and so forge efficient and productive teams - essential for success in today’s competitive research environment. The workshop draws on the personal experience of all participants as well as that of the trainer, thereby ensuring that the training is specific for and relevant to the participants’ individual needs. The workshop will be a structured discussion forum to facilitate ideas and develop strategies.

The workshop will be VERY interactive. Expect to be asked lots of questions, expect to be challenged, expect to participate!

Trainer: Rob Thompson. His workshops provide scientists with the necessary soft skills to deliver hard results. More info at

Workshop 2. Presentation Skills
Where should I stand? How can I project my voice? Am I communicating my message in the best possible way? These are common concerns when giving presentations or talks in any field.

This workshop will focus on strengthening vocal power and physical presence through exercises on projection, enunciation, variation, and breath control. Relaxation techniques, physical grounding, posture awareness and gestures will also be practiced. Students will leave with a tool box of exercises and clear goals for continued improvement.

Trainer: Elena Kaufman. She holds an MA in Drama (Toronto), an MSt in Creative Writing (Oxford) and is a member of the Hamburg Players theatre improvisation troupe.