Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Home No 79: PI is a packrat and I’m worried about safety

Jun 20

No 79: PI is a packrat and I’m worried about safety

Posted by: admin in

Tagged in: Untagged 

Sponsored Message

No 79: PI is a packrat and I’m worried about safety.

Reader question: We don’t have much lab space, and one of my PI colleagues hasn’t cleaned his desk in months. I make jokes about it, and he jokes back — but he doesn’t understand that I think he needs to clean up his desk. I’m not really in a position to order him to do anything, so what can I do?

Expert comments: You need to have a collegial discussion, using rational persuasion with him. Focus your conversation on specifics of how your colleague’s behavior is impacting others or the lab’s performance.

Say something like, “Let’s make sure we don’t have any private or possibly sensitive data lying around.” For example, if you’re doing clinical trials, you want to safeguard people’s private personal data as much as possible. Try to be helpful and talk about your lab’s policies, such as when you can dispose of collected information.

Or you can contact the university safety officer who may offer suggestions to reorganize the space, move necessary items out of the lab, and possibly add storage space elsewhere. The inspection can prod some researchers to clean up, but others may address only the specific hazards.

Expert comments by Markus Schaufele, Assistant Director and Safety/Chemical Hygiene Officer in the Office for Research Safety at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill; and an anonymous Kentucky-based PI and management consultant.

Comments (0)

Write comment
smaller | bigger

Write the displayed characters