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Science Leadership: Redesign Your Job, Part 2
Learn how to produce a goal-based work plan to keep your job aligned with your most current interests and goals.
“New responsibility creep” can drain the satisfaction science jobs provide. In Part 1 of this two-part blog, we described the tools for redesigning jobs. In Part 2, we show how to use the tools to produce a focused one-page document that keeps your job up to date with your most current interests and goals.
Using the Goal-Based Work Plan
The goal-based work plan builds on the foundations (passions, purpose, aptitudes, and pay) and uses the tools (formal and informal roles, independent studies, and mentors) introduced in the previous blog post to produce a brief (one-page) yet comprehensive document. Completing the document increases scientists’ clarity about their passions, purposes, interests, and goals. The completed document provides a useful tool for scientists to plan and negotiate job changes with management.
The goal-based work plan creates the structure useful for action planning. It includes:
Completing this form, most people list the tasks quickly and easily, but have to think more about the outcomes (and especially the outcomes for the communications tasks) and struggle most to clarify priorities allocating the 100% among all the tasks.
To illustrate how the form advances job redesign, we illustrate two versions of it for James, a statistician working in a mid-sized biotech company. Figure 1 is his first draft, Figure 2 is his revised version.
James’ Reflections and Job Redesign
James liked the clarity his first draft goal-based work plan provided in describing what he thought his job really was. Reflecting on his passions, purpose, aptitudes and pay, the draft helped him understand his frustration with his job. He revised the first draft:
Pleased and energized by his revisions, James discussed his Revised Draft with his lab’s projects, statistics and human resource managers. Each had questions about but overall positive reactions to the plan. Over the course of a few weeks, James was able to implement most of the plan and see the results in his everyday work.
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