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Dr. Emily Scales Shares her Thoughts on Work-Life Balance in the MSL Career

Dr. Emily Scales Shares her Thoughts on Work-Life Balance in the MSL Career

Why is balancing family life and the MSL role an important topic, regardless of gender?

The MSL role can be overwhelming and time consuming; with the technology of today, we are accessible 24/7.  The job will take every minute you put into it and still want for more.  The boundaries between work and life will blur. There is no complete separation, but there must be balance.  Balance in this sense does not necessarily mean ‘an even distribution,’ however.  The balance must work for you, your employer, and your family – wherever that balance falls in the end.

How do you balance MSL leadership with raising a child?

My child is my priority and sometimes that means having to go to work rather than spend the day with her.  It is not always easy; and I have made many mistakes!  But, it is important to me to show my daughter a woman can be a successful professional and still show up for piano recitals, class field trips, occasionally even be the class room mother.  She makes me a better leader. I am more patient, more innovative, and more forgiving.  I am learning every day, but my balance is often through constant motion.

Whilst working from home, what are some ways or techniques you utilize to ensure the separation of work and personal space?

First and foremost, I strongly recommend a separate and defined work space.  The best scenario would be a separate room/office, however, a small portion of a room can suffice.  There are several techniques I’ve used over the years – some have worked out quite well, others, not so much.  Come to the workshop; I might even share my most epic failures…

What advice can you give to MSL mothers regarding the extensive travel associated with the MSL career?

Stop feeling guilty!  Both men and women travel for work, but women are more often harboring the feeling of guilt.  I did.  While at work I felt I should be home with my child.  When home spending time with my child, I felt I wasn’t putting enough effort in at work.  Find the balance, make it work for you, and trust it is the right thing.  Beyond that, be organized and plan ahead is my best advice.

Copyright 2013-2018 The Medical Science Liaison Society. All rights reserved. The information contained in this article may not be published, broadcast or otherwise distributed without prior written authorization. The MSL Society is a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization dedicated to advancing the global MSL career.

 

Dr. Elizabeth Kupferer Speaks on the Challenges Women Face in the MSL Profession

Dr. Elizabeth Kupferer Speaks on the Challenges Women Face in the MSL Profession

What are the main challenges facing women in the MSL profession?

With regard to the MSL profession, for the most part the gender playing field is fairly even. But one of the most challenging for all MSLs is the travel involved and it’s impact on work life balance. There are some great sessions at the summit where you will hear from extraordinary women who have been very successful in navigating through these challenges.

How can the MSL Society Women Summit help raise awareness for female career progression?

The MSL Society Women’s Summit highlights and gives voice to successful women along the MSL career path and beyond. The Summit will provide a networking opportunity with a diverse group of women from experienced MSLs that have navigated through an MSL career path to Novices to the MSL role, yet bring a wealth of other experiences with them.

Who are you looking forward to most during the summit?

I am really looking forward to hearing Dr. Brandi Howard discuss her transition from Big Pharma to Biotech. Dr. Howard’s career path is truly inspiring as she has traversed from an entry level MSL to a Global VP. She is a personal dynamo and I believe everyone will truly enjoy her hearing from her.

As an experienced MSL Leader, what advice can you give to female MSLs to accelerate in their careers?

First and foremost is to really stay in the trenches early on and learn the role. It takes a few years to really understand the role and become a great MSL. Other than that, throughout your career, efficiency, persistence and networking always pay off.

Copyright 2013-2018 The Medical Science Liaison Society. All rights reserved. The information contained in this article may not be published, broadcast or otherwise distributed without prior written authorization. The MSL Society is a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization dedicated to advancing the global MSL career.