Jacqueline Resnick

Give Yourself Two Meetings

Posted on February 14, 2006

Discover what should happen in your team's first few meetings from Jacqueline Resnick (bio).


Q: What is the first thing to think about when creating a research team?
A: When you start thinking about team building, you have to really think about it as taking a question from an idea. You're on a quest, and you can't put these teams together and make them function unless they feel curiosity and passion about the presented idea. Ultimately, if they are not passionate about it, it's not going to go any place. Showing them that what you're presenting to them or with them builds on what they're doing is how you really start to begin to build a team.
Q: What needs to happen in a research team's early meetings?
A: After you've gotten together people from a variety of backgrounds who have similar interests, you need to get them to sit down and brainstorm together around an idea. On a practical basis, when I'm doing that, I give myself two meetings. If at the end of two meetings, you don't have some leadership that surfaces, you just don't continue because people don't want to sit around forever in search of a project.

The first meeting is a good brainstorming meeting, and the second meeting is when you deal with all the administrative kinds of issues. For that second meeting, people get emailed ahead of time so that everyone knows the plan and the goals. We are all together, and we have talked about the ideas. We know where we're heading, so what are the administrative issues we are going to have to handle? We identify them right then and there.

Everybody, whether they drop out or stay in, gets a summary of what was discussed at that first and second meeting along with a list of people to contact if they have questions later. You can have the best science in the world, but it's going to fail if the communication is poor.



Based on a presentation at NCRSA, March 2005, Greensboro, NC.


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