Collaboration and leadership

Working effectively with others, taking and initiating action and building positive relationships are key skills that support success in doctoral study and career progression. Even established professionals benefit from developing in these areas, whether the results are broader professional networks, increased effectiveness within diverse teams or establishing yourself as a trusted leader in any situation.

It is made up of four categories:

  • Interpersonal communication
  • Leadership
  • Teamwork
  • Networking

Interpersonal communication

Interpersonal communication is a foundational skill. Done well, it can help you excel in making and maintaining authentic relationships with others. The ability to connect in this way is invaluable, enabling you to establish and maintain trust, collaborate successfully, lead effectively, and manage conflicts and negotiations for good outcomes.

Examples and resources

Courses, workshops and events: Three Minute Thesis; SGS Research Showcase; Doctoral Morning Tea. Working with unconscious bias.

Actions and experiences: Participate in or lead group discussion; Practice active listening; Join a club or society; Mentor or train others; Listen to and learn from good communicators; Work with a peer or co-worker to solve a problem or challenge; Learn about cultural communication differences.

Links to other resources:


As a leader, you may be spearheading your field of research, trailblazing new ventures or progressing in your established career. The influence, inspiration and efficiency good leaders achieve are built on foundational leadership skills that can be refined and adapted as you move through your doctoral studies and career.

Examples and resources

Courses, workshops and events: Academic Career Advancement Programme (ACAP); Campus Life leadership programme

Actions and experiences: Lead a community initiative; Take a leadership role for a student group; Take on complex work project; Facilitate a panel or round-table discussion; Mentor others; Undertake tutoring work; Show initiative and be solution-focused.

Links to other resources:


In this global marketplace, you are likely to find yourself working in teams that span cultures and continents. Working effectively in diverse teams means appreciating and holding space for ideas different to your own. This enables you to thrive in collaborative environments, increase your outputs, inspire innovation and increase your ability to achieve results.

Examples and resources

Courses, workshops and events: Velocity, Summer Lab.

Actions and experiences: Form a research collaboration; Co-author an article; Join a student club or group; Collaborate on a venture or project; Take part in group activities and challenges.

Links to other resources:


Building positive strategic relationships can give you access to information, ideas and opportunities, as well as the chance to build lasting and mutually beneficial personal and professional relationships. These relationships can enrich your life and work, challenge you to stay on top of industry trends, increase your visibility and help you build a trusted reputation.

Examples and resources

Courses, workshops and events: Doctoral Morning Tea; Lunch and Learn; ResBaz; SGS Research Showcase; Velocity; Summer Lab; Three Minute Thesis.

Actions and experiences: Make a strategic networking plan for your next conference or industry event; Meet peers both in and outside of your subject area; Attend the SGS Research Showcase; Introduce yourself to others with an open mind; Follow up on informal connections; Attend faculty events; Network online; Attend faculty/discipline symposia or industry events.

Links to other resources:

Finding courses, workshops and events

There are a number of places outside of Wahapū that you can browse to find development activities, for example: