ERIC Number: EJ1003436
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Apr-29
Self-Sabotage in the Academic Career
Sternberg, Robert J.
Chronicle of Higher Education, Apr 2013
Pogo recognized long ago that we often are our own worst enemies. Sure, he was a cartoon character, but he had a point--especially in higher education, where self-sabotage seems to be a standard characteristic of academic careers. In the author's 30 years as a professor, five years as a dean, and three years as a provost, he has observed many academics harm their own careers, often without realizing it. Here are 15 ways in which one can be most self-destructive: (1) One doesn't seek out multiple mentors; (2) One doesn't seek out external evaluations; (3) One is either perfectionist or perfunctory in putting his/her work into print; (4) Did one hold on to revisions too long? Or rush them out?; (5) One pays too much attention to personal relationships--or too little; (6) One fails to understand the cultural norms of one's institution; (7) One isn't well known outside one's institution; (8) One lacks resilience in the face of failure; (9) One has been involved in one too many intradepartmental squabbles; (10) One is too selfish or too selfless; (11) One got stuck on one's dissertation paradigm; (12) One collaborates too much with colleagues from graduate school or postdoctoral years; (13) One fails to have a coherent research program; (14) One is guilty of any form of academic dishonesty; and (15) One hasn't figured out who he/she is.
Descriptors: College Faculty, Self Destructive Behavior, Career Development, Mentors, Faculty Evaluation, Faculty Publishing, Interpersonal Relationship, School Culture, Reputation, Resilience (Psychology), Conflict, Cheating, Self Concept, Research Projects
Chronicle of Higher Education. 1255 23rd Street NW Suite 700, Washington, DC 20037. Tel: 800-728-2803; Tel: 202-466-1000; Fax: 202-452-1033; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://chronicle.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A