Research is a very daunting process, beginning with formulating an answerable hypothesis, designing the study, and performing the study within the ethical boundary and submitting it before the deadline. The entire structured process will mould the researcher to be a competent and analytical person. There are many vital attributes that shape up a researcher. All these attributes can be broadly classified into these domains: personal development, inter-relationship, resilience.
Personal development – the ability to develop personal traits to suit the current academic demands. This includes skills to speak and think clearly, able to engage in an intellectual conversation and expand an idea in a concise and straightforward manner. In fact, ability to put our thoughts in a succinct and comprehensive words is an asset.
Inter-relationship – The skill to build a solid and mutual trust based relationship with the people especially with the supervisors and fellow colleagues. This includes the negotiation, presentation, persuasion, concentration and listening skills.
Resilience – It is defined as an ability to bounce back from failure and able to find for opportunities during difficult times. It consists of personal reflections (reflective thinking and writing).
Communication skills is important to ensure a good and sustainable team based performance. We are living in the era that we are inter-dependent especially when we have enterprising ideas. We need to collaborate with other key players to implement our ideas. We need to brush up the pitching and negotiation skills. These soft skills if are nurtured and practised regularly will help us to climb up the career ladder. Resilience is another important and broad topic. There are many aspects that dent our resilience including failure, politics, on overload of expectations and commitments that will help to build confidence, short deadlines and peer group comparison. We need to recognise our existing resilience mechanisms and make use of them. And if we do not have any, we need to build the strategies which encompasses on how we deal with our work, stress and family commitments. We will discuss more on this topic in our next blog.
These characters are the vital and form the basis of entrepreneurship. Thus, a research student has the capacity to transfer his generic skills and knowledge to be an entrepreneur. Once the research degree is completed, the researcher has a vast opportunities lay out in front of him. He can join academic field, contribute to the industries, or build his own start-up. In an ideal situation, the entire process of research should have prepared the researcher to be a job creator instead of a job seeker. And founding a start-up is not difficult nowadays as long as we are keen to embrace innovation and able to deliver our best in the start-up. Besides that, the value of independence and perseverance that are nurtured during the research journey would be an invaluable asset in spearheading the start-up.