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YES gave me the confidence to understand the value of my skills

Recommended to take part in YES by her peers from The Central England NERC Training Alliance (CENTA), and never to shrink away from a challenge, Amelia Bulcock talks about her personal experience including:

  • teamwork;
  • the skills gained; 
  • enhancing her CV; and 
  • future career paths.
The four of us were friends before the YES competition and when working on your PhD is often done in isolation we saw YES as a great way for us to collaborate and improve our CVs at the same time.

Listen, understand and respect

Although Amelia has worked with others as part of her PhD fieldwork she said

 Learning to come together to achieve the same outcome was a new experience because you predominantly work as individuals and make all the crucial decisions. We soon learnt that to achieve our YES goal we needed to be able to adapt our skills to work together, taking the time to listen, understand and respect everyone’s ideas and approach to the task at hand. We’re still friends post YES!!

As well as learning, new skills Amelia soon realised that many of her existing skills could be used.

 YES gave me the confidence to understand the value and flexibility of my existing skills and that I could adapt and utilise them on tasks I was working on at that time.

The team soon realised that the relaxed manner in which they normally communicated was fine when sharing a lab but for YES they needed to adapt their communication styles dependent in who their audience was. Amelia reflected 

 We were engaging with experts so needed to ensure we were using the right kind of language and approach to successfully portray our ideas.

Diverse range of skills

Working with the Vitae research planner framework throughout her PhD Amelia works to develop and learn as many skills as possible to help her with her career path. 

The framework is such an important part of what we do, if we didn’t have this we would only do training in what we enjoy rather developing a diverse range of skills. I can definitely tick off a lot more segments since taking part in YES!

ECRs experience many aspects of commercialisation by taking part in YES including intellectual property; financial and project management; presenting their research with impact to diverse audiences; and as previously mentioned teamwork. When asked about other skills Amelia commented 

 Time management was a massive skill that we had to develop because we went from having three years to do a PhD to having three days! It made you realise that you had to be effective with your time to ensure you met the deadlines given.

Career path

Amelia is still studying for her PhD and as of yet hasn’t decided on a particular career path but after participating in YES now feels that her skill base has been widened to enable her to consider a variety of positions whether it be in academia or industry. 

 Participating in YES has enhanced my CV, the training and development throughout the three days is so different to anything else and has really helped me to understand areas of business I hadn’t previously experienced.

Go for it!

YES, is currently looking for teams for this year’s competition, so we asked Amelia for her advice 

Go for it!! Be prepared to work hard. It is a pressurised environment which can make teamwork difficult, but as long as you go in adapt and listen then you will be fine.

Sign up today at PLUS find out how YES has helped others develop their career paths. 

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