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Video clip: Alison did training courses in time management, running research groups, managing budgets, dealing with conflicts and handling stress. She also went on a Springboard course.

I didn’t even give a talk in my PhD, let alone supervise anybody. So I came out with no useful training in any of those skills and one of the things that I did was, I took all the training the University offered. So I did training in time management, running research groups, managing budgets, dealing with conflicts, handling stress and I think for me it made me feel then that I actually had some strategies in place and it made me feel qualified…

Yes.

...to do some of these things and I think there’s this feeling that often women will look at a job and if they can’t do ninety per cent they won’t even contemplate applying and even then they worry incessantly about the ten per cent whereas I think, I think men are more willing to give it a go.

I went on the Springboard course while we had that project grant and this is the women’s development course that we can do through the University. And what it really gave me was the chance to sit down and think about who I was because having had a young family, and they were three and five at the time, I think you lose track of who you are because you’re one thing at work and you’re mummy at home and it just gave me a day where I could sit down and think, ‘What do I want and who am I?’

Mm.

And it also made me think about who are the people that mattered, how could I make sure that I could do what I wanted and be creative at work but also still give enough to the children that…

Mm.

…there’s no point having them if you don’t want to spend time with them.

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