• Question: Are there any problems that come with being a scientist? Like commutes, colleagues, etc?

    Asked by anon-318198 on 1 Apr 2022.
    • Photo: David Jackson

      David Jackson answered on 15 Mar 2022:

      In general you have to willing to move, certainly within the UK but even abroad to get the job you want. Like any job you have great colleagues and some, well, less great even awful colleagues. The other problem is shouting at the news that they have got the science wrong.

    • Photo: Veselina Georgieva

      Veselina Georgieva answered on 15 Mar 2022:

      You will always have problems, the important is to be a good person and think about solving your problems without losing collaboration and your personality.

    • Photo: Mahoulo Ahouansou

      Mahoulo Ahouansou answered on 15 Mar 2022:

      As a chemist, sometime your experiment might take longer. But it all come down to your time management. As for the commutes, it depends on if you like to live close to your workplace etc. For colleagues, we are human being so you will get along more with some people and less with other as long as you are respectful of everyone you will still enjoy your job.

    • Photo: Ian McKinley

      Ian McKinley answered on 15 Mar 2022:

      Not for me. I moved from Scotland to England to Switzerland because of my job – and it was all great. I suppose a problem is that I am terrible at languages and now live in an area where they speak German. Luckily my wife is a brilliant linguist – so that really wasn’t so bad. I also work quite a bit in Japan, but my colleagues there are all very friendly – and speak good English!

    • Photo: Mark Ridgill

      Mark Ridgill answered on 16 Mar 2022:

      Being a scientist has all the problems of a normal job – I don’t think there’s anything specific to being a scientist.

    • Photo: Graeme Barker

      Graeme Barker answered on 16 Mar 2022:

      In general, it’s a very good job to have with few major problems. You do tend to have to move around a lot though, especially when starting your career – this can be hard if you have a family!

    • Photo: Sophie Strickfuss

      Sophie Strickfuss answered on 16 Mar 2022:

      Being a scientist comes with the same problems as any other jobs, but it also brings a lot of satisfaction, which is why it many people choose STEM for their career.

      Outside of work, scientists often get a bad press, and I have occasionally been challenged by people to explain something they believe scientists caused, like climate change or pollution! That’s why I believe outreach is so important to highlight the good and important work scientists do.

    • Photo: Andrew Parrott

      Andrew Parrott answered on 16 Mar 2022:

      Just like any job you may have to deal with commutes or less than ideal colleagues (although I have to say that is rare). The more specialised you become the more likely you have to move to get the job you want as they will be few and far between. It used to be expected that you had to move around for a research career but I think that is less of an expectation now. I would say the main difference is perhaps the short term nature of the start of the career compared to jobs requiring similar qualifications – quiet often you will be given contracts of only a few months at the start of your career which can be challenging if you need security to support a family etc.

    • Photo: Amit Vernekar

      Amit Vernekar answered on 18 Mar 2022:

      There will be a number of problems, but learning to handle situations in a better way is a key to success.

    • Photo: Mohanad Aldib

      Mohanad Aldib answered on 18 Mar 2022:

      Commute could be a problem, especially if your already had settled and established a family in an area which does not offer so many opportunities in your field.
      The culture of the workplace is another challenge. As scientists come from all over the world to live and work in the UK, it is really important to look for a company where diversity is valued and people are respected no matter where they are from.

    • Photo: Ioanna Maria Pateli

      Ioanna Maria Pateli answered on 21 Mar 2022:

      I guess one problem but also exciting thing that I can think of is that you change quite a lot of universities especially in the start of your career. So, the fact that you have to move your stuff along with finding accommodation and in general adjust to a new city and group is quite challenging sometimes.