Seven steps to lab harmony

Seven steps to lab harmony By Kerry Grens Related Articles Feature: Dealing with Conflict The Perils of Authorship Ease conflict: read an example of a real lab's laws 1. Be aware "I think the single most important thing a lab director can do is be cognizant of these issues," says Carl Cohen, president of Science Management Associates. Ignoring c

kerry grens
Kerry Grens

Kerry served as The Scientist’s news director until 2021. Before joining The Scientist in 2013, she was a stringer for Reuters Health, the senior health and science reporter at...

View full profile.


Learn about our editorial policies.

Feb 1, 2007

Seven steps to lab harmony


By Kerry Grens


1. Be aware

"I think the single most important thing a lab director can do is be cognizant of these issues," says Carl Cohen, president of Science Management Associates. Ignoring conflict in the lab can allow situations to spiral out of control. Stay in tune with the interpersonal dynamics and recognize when you are needed to step in.


2. Confront conflict

When it's time to step in, be direct and honest. "If you've got something constructively critical to tell somebody, tell them directly, clearly: This is not acceptable. Tell them you're happy to work with them to change, and here are suggestions for change," says Ed O'Neil at the University of California, San Francisco. Do not embarrass or humiliate anyone by reprimanding...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to digital editions of The Scientist, as well as TS Digest, feature stories, more than 35 years of archives, and much more!
Already a member?