How to Deal With Challenging People In Your Lab (and Beyond)

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This is the Happy Scientist Podcast.

Each episode is designed to make you more focused,

more productive, and more satisfied in the lab.

You can find us

slash happy scientist.

Your hosts are Kenneth Vo, founder

of the Executive coaching firm, Vera Claritas, and Dr.

Nick Oswald, PhD, bioscientist and Founder Bite-size bio.

Hello, this is Nick Oswald welcoming you

to this bite-size bio webinar, which today is a live episode

of the Happy Scientist Podcast.

If you want to become a happier, healthier,

and more productive scientist, you are in the right place.

With me, as always, is the bite-sized bio teams, Mr.

mgi, Mr. Kenneth Vo.

In these sessions, we'll hear from Ken mostly on principles

that will help shape you for a happier

and more successful career.

And along the way, I'll pitch in

with points from my personal experience as a scientist

and from working with Ken.

If you have any questions along the way,

put them into the questions box on the right hand side

of your screen, and I will put them to Ken today.

We will be discussing how to earn respect in your lab

and in your field.

Over to you, Ken.

Alright, how to earn respect.

This, this kind

of plays off something we've talked about before.

That is a, is a huge issue in the scientific community that,

of imposter syndrome, where you feel like I,

I'm not respectable.

What can I do? Well, that this is a beautiful way

to solve imposter syndrome.

I don't care if you've been an imposter in the past, as

of today, from this point forward,

you're gonna earn, respect, earn.

So you don't have to worry about being an imposter anymore.

You're earning it.

And there's a couple different places to earn it.

You know, as we mentioned here in the title,

just earning respect right in your own lab

with the people you work with every day is important.

But also gaining respect in the wider scientific community,

in the wider world, in your field, so

that when people see your name, uh, you know, on the,

on the speaker list, they go, oh,

I want to hear from this person.

'cause they know what they're talking about.

So that's what we're gonna jump into today.

Now, I really, really, really wanted

to have Areha Franklin singing respect to y'all right now,

but we just couldn't work it out technically.

Nick suggested that I sing it for you.

I suggested that Nick sing it for you.

But, uh, we both kind of opted out on that.

So you'll have to just in your own head,

hear Aretha singing respect.

But now that you've done that, let's talk about

how you're gonna earn respect.

And we're gonna start with the notion

of be preemptively respectful yourself.

Your respect is not earned at the cost of other people.

You don't, you don't have to take it from anybody else.

If there are other respectable people around you,

and hopefully there are, it's not gonna make it hard

for you to be respectable.

So start off by just being a good respecter yourself.

And that is, you know, you, you can offer to offer to help.

You can be, um,

a collaborator in both in effort and in thinking.

You can be an, you can be a collaborative leader.

That's, again, this is all part

of you being respectful to others.

Now, this means too that, um, you,

you may have to think about how you delegate things and,

and how you treat coworkers and all this.

And, and making sure that you have assembled a team

of people that, that you find reliable

and are amen, that you're amenable to working with.

Um, so, so this way the work

that's being done by your group

that's being done in your name

automatically helps you.

You, you'll be more respectful as a result of the work

that's done by your team.

But that's only gonna happen if you're treating the people

on your team with respect.

People that, that are,

and when I say on your team, they,

they may just be fellow teammates

who may not be in charge of the team.

But again, if you treat these others with respect, their

reaction is going to be to be positive to you too.

So, you know, that's, that's important to do,

to treat others with respect first.

That's the starting point,

to developing your own respectability.

Another thing you can think about is

nurturing the profess professional development of others.

You know, you may have newer people

or younger people on your team, can you help them?

Can you help them become respectable?

You know, and, and sometimes that's just a matter of you

kind of being their promoter.

Um, you know, and I say promoter, I mean like in a, in a,

um, you know, uh, the way you'd promote a,

a music actor or a, or a an actor say.

The, the point is, is that you're saying, Hey,

we really wanna have Bob or Sally on our team.

'cause you know, they do good work

and you know, they, they did great work on this in the past,

and I'm sure they're gonna be a great additional here.

Um, it, it allows for you then to provide some mentorship.

It allows for you to, to, to offer, uh,

recommendations of others.

And these are, again, these are respectful acts on your part

if you bother to do these kind of things for other people,

if you help them advance in their own career too.

Um, again, it's, it's a, it's a way of providing respect

to others and you not create an environment

where it's normal to show respect to others.

And in fact, it might appear to be abnormal, to treat you

with disrespect.

So it, it, it can solve a lot of problems in advance.

Another thing you can do is, is when it comes

to showing respect to others, is going back to the past.

It's not just about helping them move forward,

but are you, do you show gratitude

for the work they've they've done

that's benefited you in the past?

And unless they benefited you,

it might be they benefited you personally,

but it might be they benefited your operation,

they benefited your, your field

or your, your, your area of interest in research.

Um, it,

all these things are worth showing gratitude for.

And when I say show it, it means you, somebody else has

to notice that you're grateful.

It can't just be a nice warm feeling you have inside,

although that's a good place to start,

but you need to express it.

You gotta put it out there. Let people know that you're

grateful for the contribution that they're making,

and they will tend toward showing their gratitude

for the contributions that you make.

So it, some

of this may be kinda like brain training for yourself.

If, if you're natural leaning is to be negative, um,

to look for problems, um, no, I'm not.

And I'm not calling that out as being bad.

Understand what I'm saying? Negative is not the same as bad.

And maybe you are the, maybe you're the person in the group

that does look for problems

and somebody needs, needs to do that.

But is that all you do?

You, you're gonna find that it's a lot easier to,

to show respect to others and to be grateful to others.

If you're not in that mode 24 7,

every once in a while you get

to be happy, go ahead and do it.

And you can determine to be happy.

Um, that's not something that's like, well, I have

to have the data to prove that I should be happy first.

No, you don't. No, you don't.

You can be happy in your work environment right now.

And part of what'll help that is if you make it a more

pleasant environment for others,

well then they're gonna tend

to make it a more pleasant environment for you.

And it just becomes a, an upward cycle that, that,

that gets better and better.

Of course, one of the, one of the things too about this is

if you're gonna show respect to others, it's gotta be real.

You, it's gotta be genuine.

Don't, don't, don't try

to demonstrate respect that you don't actually feel

if you've got somebody on your team that is just, um,

just messes up on a regular basis

and you're praising them for how steadfast

and reli they are, well that's, that's disingenuous

and it will show, it'll come through that way

and it doesn't work.

But if you bother to look at, well,

where can I praise this person?

Where can I, you know, they, they always, they,

they always show up for work.

You know, they, they, they're always willing to,

you know, do the cleanup.

They're, if you can find something genuine, something real

that you can say, you know what, that's a good thing.

We do need, we do need somebody

that'll take notes in a meeting.

You know, and then they always are willing to do it.

That, that's great.

Now, if you have somebody that's like, there's nothing,

nothing respectful about anything they do ever,

why are they in your lab?

Why are they on your team? You know, you, you ought

to look at that and see

if there's something you can do about that.

But it may be that they just need some help,

they need some mentoring

and is, it's a good thing if you can

offer that and help them.

So, uh, there was this quote from Maya Angelou

that I thought was, was really interesting,

and it talks about how others react to you.

She said, people will forget what you said.

People will forget what you did.

But people will never forget how you made them feel.

If you made them feel like they were respected.

If you bothered to find something about them

that you could respect, that's gonna stick

with 'em for a long time.

And it, it may really turn things around.

If you've had somebody that's a problem person for you,

and you thought, well, I'm never gonna get respect outta

this person, so why should I bother to respect them?

Well, the reason you should bother is

because it can turn things around.

So it's, it's worth taking that step.

So, okay, enough about respecting others.

Let's get down to you being respected.

So the first thing you have to do if you wanna be respected,

is you have to be respectable personally.

I mean, that may sound obvious, but sometimes we miss that.

We so want the result that we forget that we play a part in

that, because the idea

of others respecting you, well, that's up to them.

You know, they, they have to choose to respect me, right?

But you can influence that.

And one of the ways you influence it is

by having confidence.

If you are confident, others will pick up on that.

It's contagious. And they'll start to believe you.

They will start to believe in your power.

And others will notice that they believe in your power

and it'll show up.

And if, if your objective is not to take control

of everybody, but your objective is to be to be respectable,

well, it's gonna be that much easier if you want,

if you're constantly rolling over people, you know, it's,

it's one thing to be confident,

it's another thing to be arrogant.

So I'm talking about just genuine confidence

that there's a basis for this.

Arrogance is what people do

to hide their lack of confidence.

So, you know, stick to being confident, you know,

and think about, you know, think

before you speak so that you can speak with authority.

When you do speak, think about the other

ways that we communicate.

It's not always about language.

Sometimes it's about, it's about our body language.

So it's about the environment we're in.

It's about our attitude

or, you know, are we always acting rushed?

Are we always acting stressed?

Those things take away from a demonstration of confidence.

But if you demonstrate you're confident and it's,

and it's validly so that you're confident,

'cause you actually do know what you're doing,

and by the way, you probably do so,

catch yourself a little slack.

Um, but once you, once you do have something figured out,

you wanna let the world know that,

that you have it figured out.

Another thing you can do

to improve your respectability is to communicate well.

So one of the, one

of the big things about communicating well is the part

that a lot of folks believe out.

That is you have to stop talking and start listening.

It's like, although communication was about me getting

something across, yes,

but it, it's communication is an interaction.

So you have to, you have to listen to the,

to the people you're speaking to also.

You gotta get feedback from them.

You gotta, you gotta find out, did I actually,

did my point actually land?

Did I get it across? And you can tell that by listening.

So sometimes,

and in, you know, in the scientific setting,

this is an important thing that has to happen.

Sometimes someone has an opposing view, well, that's great.

Let's examine opposing views.

Let's examine your view, let's examine their view.

Let's, let's put it all out there in the light.

And if you're willing to have your views be challenged,

again, that's gonna increase your respectability.

If you're willing to look at flaws in your views

and to improve them

and to, to reshape things, that, that, again,

improves your personal respectability.

Another thing you could do if you wish

to be respectable is manage your time.

Well, now that seems a little outside of things

'cause it doesn't really have to do

with the specific things you're doing.

But do you get things done?

Do you deliver on your commitments?

Um, and if you do that,

how do you communicate it?

Do you communicate it by being this smug person who's always

sitting there in a conference room first

before everybody else gets there

and just looking around like, well, nice

of you all to show up.

You know? So you lose the benefit of the fact

that you respected their time by being there early, by

taking something away from them, for instance, in

that, in that setting.

But, you know, be prepared

for the things that you're there to do.

Show respect for other people's time.

They'll show respect for your time.

And there's other, you know, other settings

where you're engaged with people

that are, that are on a schedule.

You know, sometimes it's about meetings at work,

but maybe you're, maybe you're meeting with, with clients

or sponsors or, or others outside of the work environment.

Again, do you, do you show respect for other people in,

in how you manage your time there?

And when you have deadlines, do you deliver on 'em?

And do you communicate on you about your deadlines?

That, especially if they're at risk, if,

if a deadline might be missed, it's way better for people

to be told that upfront.

The earlier they know, the softer the blow will be.

And again, you're helping your own respectability there.

If you hide it, hide it, hide it,

and then at the last second, like,

oh, we're not gonna make it.

No, that hurts your respectability,

your personal respectability.

And then it's hard

to demand respectability when you're not

personally respectable.

Another thing you can find, again, this comes back around

to communication, it's follow up with people.

Make sure you, you keep engaged with them when, when

that happens again, they're far more likely to respect you.

That you're, they, they don't feel left out

and they don't feel like you're hiding.

Um, all those things improve your reputation

and improving your reputation helps you be more respectable.

And again, it could be,

it could be simple things like responding to emails

or returning phone calls.

Um, all these things are available to you.

Nobody else controls any of this part.

It's, when it comes to you being personally respectable,

it's absolutely up to you.

It's, and it's not to say

that other people might not occasionally attack your

respectability, but for the most part, that's,

they got other fish to fry.

They don't have time to, most people don't have time

to just be tearing down other people.

So chances are,

if you show an interest in being personally respectable,

most people aren't gonna be shooting at that.

And if they are, they're gonna hurt their own credibility.

So this, when you've demonstrated enough

and somebody says, well, I don't know about Bob.

He never shows up for meetings on time.

And other people are like, what are you talking about?

He goes, he's always there. He is always prepared.

He, he always gets back there.

But there, you know, that'll actually help reinforce your

respectability when if others bring it into question.

If you've established enough of it already, then

every test strengthens it.

Alright, we're gonna go back to a well musical,

uh, reference here.

This here is Dave Gold from Foo Fighters rockstar.

You may have remembered him.

Uh, at one point he, he actually broke his leg at a show

and he came back out and finished the show.

And then the next show, you know, they had

to cancel a couple of shows

'cause you know, you had a broken leg.

But when he, he came back just a couple shows later

on a throne with a cast on his leg

singing and playing guitar.

I mean, wow, in his world,

his respectability took a leap.

He was like a super musician for,

for all this stuff that he did.

He had every reason to just say, well,

you know, I can't do it.

Broken leg, gotta heal up, see you all in a couple months.

And he could have done that, but he didn't do that.

And the respectability he gained was,

was amazing in his field.

So the same thing is, can be true for you

if you wanna get lab specific about your respectability.

I I wanna be respected specifically here, not just,

yeah, I mean, there's, I mean,

there's certainly nothing wrong with it.

The fact that you are just respected as a decent human being

or in things that are not related to your lab.

You're respected as a, as a partner or as a father

or a mother, or as a brother or a sister, or, you know, or,

or some something you do as an avocation, that's all fine.

But here in the lab,

how do you specifically get respected in your lab?

Well, the first thing is to be open to learning.

That is know what you don't know.

And this is not the same

as feeling like feeling like an imposter.

It's either stuff I, uh,

that everybody thinks I'm an expert in, and I'm not.

That's not what I mean. I mean, when you

actually put your hand up and go, this,

this is new information to me, I wanna know more.

Now, if you, if you're newer in the lab, you're younger, uh,

you may wanna key on the fact that, look,

I'm, I'm looking to grow.

I, i I need the inputs.

If you're somebody with more experience, it's,

it shows curiosity

and your part's like, oh,

that's something I didn't know about

or something I'd like to hear more about.

So the, it starts with, you have to be open to it.

Are you open to learning more or are you so busy projecting?

Well, I'm, I'm the expert here

and everybody should check with me

to find out if their ideas

that whole have any merit or hold any water.

You know, that's, that's not gonna help you

when you, when you can show that moment of, oh,

that's new, that's interesting.

That doesn't take away from you,

that doesn't hurt your reputation at all.

It shows that, that you're nimble minded, that you're,

that you're willing to collaborate with others who have,

who have ideas that are new to you.

So you wanna, you wanna keep doing that.

And in fact, you may want to get more,

more specific about this in that make it a part

of your own routine.

You know, like maybe once a quarter, you know,

a couple times a year, stop and do a self-assessment.

Like what, what are areas of weakness for me?

What are areas where I could improve my, my understanding,

my knowledge, my experience,

and, you know, be brutally honest with yourself.

Now, you can also do this kind of assessment, not just

with yourself specifically,

but with others, say in your own lab, what are areas where,

where we need to bolster things?

Where, where do we need somebody

to become the expert on this particular area?

And again, you're creating a, a,

a collaborative respectability now,

and you don't have to necessarily earn it all personally.

Sometimes it's just too much to do it all yourself.

So if you can,

if you can help your group be more respectable, it,

it will again, reflect on you.

So don't, don't worry about, uh, about competing

so much with your, with your direct colleagues.

I mean, and I realize there's,

there is sometimes some amount of,

of legitimate competition.

Like there's only gonna be one opening for something

and only one person's gonna get it.

Okay? That happens. But,

but for the most part, working together with people,

boosting them in their career will help you too.

And if you have the reputation for being somebody

that's open to learning, other people

will start to cotton onto that.

They'll, they'll wanna be that way too,

and they'll wanna be that way with you and all of that.

It, it helps convince them of your value in the lab.

You're gonna help them in their career.

You're gonna help their just day-to-day work. Be easier.

You're gonna be someone they can rely on, someone

that they could go to, uh, if, if need be in certain areas.

Another thing you can do personally in,

in your own lab is find a mentor is there's somebody there

that really is at the top, top of the game,

at least in your area.

And, and it doesn't have to be that the best in the world,

but other, the best in your lab.

Well, great. Can, can you get some insight from these folks?

And, but you know, people do like to be asked

for their opinions and,

and even some people who are gruff might appear like, oh,

they, they're not gonna like it if I ask for their help.

Yeah, you know what? They probably will,

and they may not always show it.

And you know, that may just have to do with the fact, hey,

they're busy or, you know,

they've got other stresses going on.

But if you can find a way to say to somebody, Hey, listen,

when you have a moment, I could really use

some pointers on this.

Um, that that can go a long way.

And, and again, the fact that you're humble enough to ask

for assistance is, is something

that boosts your own respectability.

And people will respect you, will respect you

for pointing out that you don't know something.

And they'll respect you more if they,

if you point out they could help you

with this thing you don't know about, you know, you, you're,

you're getting an opportunity

to get respect directly from an individual.

And, and in case of somebody who's a worthy mentor,

probably somebody who's, who's respect is quite valuable.

So why not? Another way

to look at this is in a broader sense is can you build,

build a team in your lab?

Can, can you really get that teamwork going?

'cause now it's not a matter of somebody being the mentor,

but it's a matter of we all, we're all working together,

we all have parts to play and I couldn't do my part.

Well, if you weren't doing your part,

and you know, that's, that again, is good for everybody.

And it, it creates an environment of,

of mutual respectability.

I remember watching a,

a scene from the movie 2001 Space Odyssey

when they were on the moon.

And so these are all, you know,

highly educated people, highly respectable people, the fact

that they've managed to rise to that level.

And some of them are in positions of, of authority, some

or have political power, uh,

but a lot of them are, were scientists on the ground.

And in some cases they were scientists

that were literally physically on the ground.

They had to do the physical part of the work.

And so in this one scene where they're traveling to out into

what, uh, this archeological dig they've done on the moon

and the political guys there, he's, he's in charge.

And then there's a couple other guys, and,

and you could tell just to look at these guys,

these guys were captains of the football teams.

They, you know, they're astronauts, you know,

and they were showing so much respect to

the political leader that the doctor in, you know, the,

the professor, I wonder, whatever you wanna call him, the,

the PhD in charge of all this.

And they, they specifically said to him, well, you know,

well, he said to them, we're, we're really happy that, that,

that you're taking this so seriously

and that you've, you know, it was something they needed

to keep secret and that you've, you know,

you've kept it secret and da da da.

And they're like, well, you know, we,

we know you guys are working hard on this

and you told us to do it, so we did it.

You know, um, that kind of mutual respect

among a very strong team of strong people, everybody on

that team was strong.

Everybody on that team was a leader.

But that came because they showed respect to each other,

and they earned respect from each other.

So that, that brings up the idea of paying attention

to the group that you're in.

How are they doing? How's the morale in the group?

If you notice there's problems, there's weights on people.

If you're checking in with people, if you're asking

for feedback, you can see those things.

If you are in a position of authority, perhaps you can,

you can help massage the environment.

But even if you're not, even if you're just an individual

that is showing individual interest in someone else, um,

that's on your team to help improve the morale, that's,

again, that is something people will respect.

And you'll find

that respect starts coming in the back door on this stuff.

You're not, you're not looking for the respect,

you're not trying to manufacture respect out of nothing,

and you're not, you're not trying

to manipulate people into it,

but you're just being the kind of person

that they just will naturally respect,

even if they don't want to, even if they're somebody

that feels competitive

or, um, has self-esteem issues

of their own imposter syndrome of their own,

they won't be able to stop themselves from showing

you respect.

Fir then more importantly, first for having that respect,

then it'll start to show.

Now, um, all this being said,

you can give yourself away totally

where there's just nothing left for yourself.

So you still have to create boundaries here.

There's a, you still gotta protect your yourself

and your own interests.

It's not your first thing to think about.

But at the end of the day, it's worth making sure that

I still wanna, I still want

to be noticed for the work I've done.

I still need to communicate

that I am a valuable part of this team.

And, you know, it's fine. Take care of yourself too.

Respect yourself. When you respect yourself, you'll find

that others will also tend to respect you.

Okay, let's get outside of your lab.

Now, it's a matter of the bigger world.

Um, and depending on the kind of science you're doing,

you know, your world may be small or, you know, intimate.

There are only so many people doing what you do.

Or it could be big, you could, it could be very broad.

So when you're in that kind of environment,

sometimes you have to look at things

that you might think are just superficial.

Um, do I look the part, you know, am I

what people are expecting to see?

And I'm not saying that you have to play it a certain way,

you know, it's, it's not always about, well,

they expect the white lab coat

and they expect the, the glasses

and they, you know, whatever they expect.

Um, because, you know, maybe,

maybe you're rocking the mad scientist approach.

That's up to you. You know, pick, pick your lane though,

and go ahead and broadcast it.

And you broadcast it by, by how you appear.

And I don't just mean like clothes and, um,

and things like that, but just like, what,

what presence do you wanna have?

And it's also not a bad idea

to recognize their prejudices out there.

And, you know, we,

we live in a somewhat male dominated world.

Maybe women do have to work a little harder at harder.

Um, but that's, that's just how it is.

Or if you're younger or if you look younger,

you may have to overcome that.

Well, that's just how it is. Now.

We can complain about the structure of society and,

and, uh, you know, be all indignant about it.

But the fact is, we have to start from where we are.

So if things look a certain way,

if society looks a certain way, we start from there.

What am I gonna do about it based on that

doesn't mean you have to like it,

it doesn't mean you have to approve of it.

Doesn't mean you don't wanna change it,

or you are, doesn't mean you're not actively working at

changing it, but you start from where you are.

So know your audience

and know what they're, they're gonna expect.

Take them to the next step.

It's up to you to, to,

to create the image that you want to create.

And I will grant you that some images are

riskier than others, but those riskier images may

have high payoffs too.

So if you're willing to sign up for that

and you're willing to take the lumps

that come with it, fine.

But if you just wanna be, look, I'm,

I'm just gonna be regular, reliable.

I don't wanna stand out in a negative way in any way,

fine, you can do that too.

It's, you know, it's up to you.

You take the, you make the choice of

how you want your profession to unfold

and how you want to be seen in the world.

Now, I personally am a big fan of taking risks,

but, uh, you know, you gotta assess your own, you know, uh,

risk tolerance level.

You know, we've, we've done some other talks on, you're on,

uh, happy scientist about, about what risk means and,

and how you should react to it.

I mean, don't burn yourself out.

Don't, don't burn it all out on one ideas.

Always have something in reserve.

You know, we, we've seen people that have taken, taken

scientific positions that are way out of the mainstream.

And some of those folks end up developing reputation

as a crackpot.

But this side of that, they may develop a reputation

as an innovative thinker.

They may develop a reputation

as a someone who's really creative in the field

and being open to, to, uh, an idea

that is not the established norm isn't necessarily a bad

thing, especially in science.

Um, it's, it's worth examination. Sometimes.

It's, and it comes down to too, like,

I'm not saying this is the way it is,

but it's worth looking at that

and seeing what, what is there to be learned that that kind

of thinking is desperately needed in,

in the world in general, but in science specifically.

So you can be a part of that.

So that's

what it's like getting respectability out

there in the rest of the world.

And it may go beyond your field, it may go, you know, does,

does your field touch the public?

Do you, do you wanna have a presence in that way?

Do you wanna be someone who's being, you know,

interviewed on, on CNN or Fox News?

I don't know. That's up to you. If that's a kind

of role you wanna, you wanna have in the world,

and you can, you can impact your respectability there

by part of it is how you show up, what, what you choose

to have the world see about you.

Part of it is taking risks, um, but calculated risks.

Risks that are worthwhile. All right.

So what do you think, Nick?

Well, that was a lot. Yeah.

Uh, I mean, I think it's quite interesting what you say.

It's a lot of this sounds like, uh, common sense,

but I, I think that is really good to dive into

and give people, uh, you know,

or like together have a, just a, just think about,

uh, about what, how important respectability

as you're calling it is and, uh, and how to cultivate it.

Um, in my mind, if I'm looking back, then it would be a bit

of a, you know, a you'd be thinking, I want

to be more respectable, and it can be a bit needy.

You know, it's, oh, I want these people to respect me.

What can I do? Uh, and but in reality,

and along with what you're saying there,

there's no scramble.

You don't have to be needy about that.

You just have to take a stand

and decide how you're gonna be.

And the steps that you laid out there were, um, you know,

just, I really love that idea.

You just, you know, it starts with just being confident.

It's like that if you're gonna love someone else, you have

to love yourself first thing.

It's, yeah. Stand up and just be the person you want to be.

And even if you don't feel it, it doesn't matter.

It, it's, you fake it until you make it. Yeah.

Um, and it'll come there.

Um, and I just wrote down some, uh, you know, that

about you, you wrote about, uh, then, so

that's being respectable, that,

but then actively respecting others, um, you know, going out

and, uh, creating that reciprocal thing

where people will remember you

because you, I mean, I, it's really diff it's, it's,

it's difficult because if you say, yeah,

you respect other people so

they'll remember you, it's not like that.

That sounds manipulative.

Um, but what we're doing here is just creating

and setting out the env how we want the environment to be.

We be that, and then, then it starts to become that.

Um, and, uh, you know, I wrote sit down some words,

confidence, integrity, reliability, consistency,

connection, openness.

Those are some of the sort of, uh, words that came

through when you were talking there.

That's, that's ways to be

standing in respectability

or in an environment

where you're gonna cultivate respectability for yourself.

Um, it's worth looking around at what you do, how you act,

how other people perceive you.

Um, a personal anecdote about that, uh, I, um,

um, all my life I've notoriously been kind of, uh,

late for things, not kind of late

for things, late for things.

And, um, and I look around

and go, well, yeah, is this how I want to be?

This is what I've done in the last year.

And, you know, it's like five,

five minutes later or something.

Um, do I want to do, I want that to be what people think

of me first.

You know, think of first when they think of me

or even second, no, I don't.

So is there something I can do about that?

Yes, I can just stop being late or, uh,

and you know, that sort of thing is just training,

training yourself into actually respecting

yourself and others more really.

Mm-Hmm. And, um, and,

and then you get, you know, it's, you retain the balance.

I find that, I wouldn't say

that I'm perfect at not being late for things,

but I'm better than I used to be.

I'm working on it, and I agree, yeah,

he has done better folks.

I mean, uh, but what it does I notice is it put,

knocks me off balance less

because if I late, then I'm off balance.

Uh, and, um, and then I'm trying to make up for it.

And you know, that you, everyone will have their own

sort of, uh, characteristic like that mine has been light,

yours might be, it might be something else,

but, um, everyone will have their own.

Uh, but it's, do an audit of yourself

and where are you not being respectable to yourself

or respectful to yourself or to others.

Um, and that's starts to create that itinerary of the,

to-do list of what you can do to, to increase this for you.

So you don't go out and get respect.

You just attract respect. Right.

Um, and one other thing that occurred to me as well, I I,

I like that you touched on image,

and it's not that you have to look a certain way,

but there is the whole area of personal brand.

Um, and so, and there's the whole option as a scientist

to take it to another level where, uh,

I know plenty, there are plenty examples out there, um, of

scientists who have taken an active

participation in some sort of platform like LinkedIn

or Bite-sized bio for that matter

or somewhere else to, to stand and,

and give in that way, you know, to project, uh, uh,

a confidence to project a knowhow, to project

ane an openness and connectness

and, um, some of those people is really opened doors for.

And so, um, that's what, it's not, it's not a, a must have,

but it's an option that is an easier these days, I think,

um, than it ever was to, you know, you can just take,

make the decision that you are gonna start putting out there

what, you know, and, um,

and cultivating that kind of tribe or audience or

however it's called in various ways of thinking about it.

But I think that that's a whole other discussion,

but I think it adds on quite nicely to this, uh, idea of,

of respectability and, and cultivating that for yourself.

Sure. So I, I, I really wanna, again,

call out the difference between being respectable

and being respected.

Um, if your focus is only on being respected,

you're just not gonna get there.

You gotta take personal responsibility

for being respectable.

That's, that's the starting point for everything.

And then it goes from there. If you're not respectable,

you're not gonna get respect.

That's just how it is.

Yeah. There's so many of the things

that we talk about on here are they end up being virtuous

circles, and this is the same.

And it's so easy to look on the other side

of the circle going, respect me and yes, and,

and ask for that and realize,

but then realize that where you need to start is the part

that you can do, which is be respectable

and do things to respect other people.

And then it start, the wheel starts

turning and it'll come back to you. So Right.

And there are environments

where a position deserves respect for whoever occupies it.

You know, you respect the head of the lab just

because they're in that role,

but it's way easier for that person

to be respected if they're also personally respectable.

So if you're only relying on, well, I have the sheepskin,

or I have the job title, you're gonna have an uphill battle.

Yeah. I, I would say that that's, uh, uh,

it's probably not particular particular to science,

but it, it's, yeah.

Um, but that's a, a, a real pitfall is to, to think

that because you've earned respect from, uh, a, a position

or a publication or, or you know, or whatever, a Nobel prize

or whatever, uh, that you, that you then don't have

to be respectable or respectful for other to other people,

and you kind of cash it in and just let it all go.

That's, that's a real, uh, slippery slope.

And it's, it's quite common.

It's, I was gonna say it's common in science,

but it's probably common in every, every, um, field human

Endeavor. Yeah.

It's quite noticeable in science

because you get, science is unusually set up for fiefdoms,

um, because you know, you're, you know, effectively a

private, you know, you, once you get funding, you're,

it's your own little fiefdom in, in a way.

It's quite closeted. Um,

and there's a relatively high, um,

from what I've, my personal experience, relatively high

incidents of people taking that respect

and kind of cashing it in

and, uh, not maintaining the humility that's required

for, you know, to keep that respectfulness going.

Well, yeah. It's, do you wanna, do you wanna be respected

for the rest of your life or you just wanna be

respected in this moment?

Yeah, I mean, you can, you can

burn whatever capital you've got

and then, then what happens later?

So, you know, it's, it's better

to be more long term when it comes to,

to respectability. Alright.

That's Alright.

Was that your, was that your

Yep. That, that covers

it for me too.

Cool. Alright, well thank you to everyone, um, for, uh,

tuning in to this Happy Scientist live.

Um, we've reached the end into the day

and thanks Ken for some great wisdom.

Uh, and thank you for everyone listening in, whether

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