How to Improve Lab Management
Leads to certification

How to Improve Lab Management

Managing a lab involves a wide range of decisions, many of which have significant impact on the people and mission of the lab. The first two courses of this track focus on the process of making difficult decisions, and how to introduce data-driven decision-making processes into the lab. Data-driven decisions are more objective and easier to communicate. Some of these decisions revolve around the appropriate changes required for the lab to thrive. The Change Management course will help lab managers embrace an effective change process and address questions about convincing people to accept the change, and how to sustain important changes for the lab. Other decisions involve other people, so learning to negotiate more effectively in the Negotiating Win/Win course will help lab managers improve their comfort and skill in negotiating and teach them the value of win/win outcomes. Finally, lab managers need to learn how to bring new ideas into the lab and gain support from people over whom they have no authority. The Networking and Influence course will teach improved networking skills and how to win allies and supporters through influence.

Curriculum content

  • Change is required for all labs. Some changes are easy and some are hard. It is natural for people to be hesitant and resistant to change. Lab managers can learn effective change management techniques that will create a compelling vision of the future, create a plan to achieve it, execute the plan to realize the benefits, and sustain the change into the future. Nurturing a culture of change and continuous improvement will make future changes easier and more effective.
    • Lesson Change Management

  • Lab managers must make a wide variety of decisions. Some decisions are easy, but some decisions can be very difficult. Making difficult decisions requires a disciplined approach, benefits greatly from using the data available, and can be more effective when tackled as a team. This course is intended to provide a series of tips and advice to demonstrate an approach to making decisions, especially difficult ones. It will include some examples that show how the lab manager can approach these difficult decisions and include a few activities to help build skill and practice these approaches.
  • Networking is the ability to cultivate a wide range of people that you can help, and who will help you. Networking is not a luxury—it is a vital skill for lab managers to develop and use. Influence is the ability to get work done through people over whom you have no authority. It is driven by trust and dependability. Influence is also a vital skill required to get work done across teams and organizations.
  • Lab managers need to make a wide variety of decisions. Many of these decisions can be significantly improved by following a data-driven decision-making process. Using data in decisions will help make better decisions, be more objective, and enable more clear communication about the decisions.
  • Lab managers need to make a wide range of decisions on many different topics. Some of these decisions will need to be negotiated with staff, customers, and vendors. To build strong, long-term relationships, both sides will need to seek to understand the real needs of the other and negotiate for a win/win outcome.