Here you'll find some surprising knowledge and inspiration...

...that was collected trough our Web Interview
How to delegate? Apply the "yes/no e-mail". A yes/no e-mail is not an e-mail that you send as a manager, it is an e-mail that your coworkers send to you. It saves a lot of time. I used to receive too many e-mails a day, at some times averaging 70 e-mails per day. The essence of these e-mails was often "Taco, what should I do?". Replying to these e-mails had become my main occupation. One day, I gathered the team and asked them to only write yes/no e-mails from that time on. They are e-mails that I can answer with a simple yes or no. No more "Taco, the copier is defect and I have to print about 50 manuals for tomorrow's training. What should I do?" But rather "Taco, the copier is defect. Because I have to print about 50 manuals for tomorrow's training, I suggest I'll drive to the copy shop and print them over there. It will cost a couple of hundred euros, but it will save the training. Do you agree?" This saved everybody a lot of time. Later, we realised that there was another, maybe even more important effect. The people with questions to me did not experience anymore the e-mail replies with answers to questions that they were not waiting for. Instead, they felt more responsible and in control. To delegate doesn't only mean to get rid of some tasks, but also to give responsibility to others!

Taco Oosterkamp, Author "Schaamteloos Delegeren" (delegeren.nl)


Research. To strive towards a better tomorrow, all in our own way, denting the surface that is our shared knowledge, is not so much an intellectual challenge as a mental one. It requires the ability to work under pressure, openness to collaboration, expressiveness and creative thinking. It demands independence, patience and responsibility. Above all, it is the effort we are willing to put into what we wish to improve and the time we so gladly devote to our goals, that define who we are and what we stand for. This devotion is the beauty of research.

Sven Vermeulen, PhD Student Business Informatics (Ghent University)


If I would recommend a single additional course to researchers, it would be PCM (Process Communication Modelling). This is about understanding different personalities to foster good collaboration.

Ward Reynaert, PhD Student Accounting (Ghent University)


People can exhaust themselves on two levels: physically and mentally. In order to recover from the one level, it is a good idea to perform tasks at the other level. If you were working all day at your desk, being busy with many tasks, you are mentally exhausted at the end of the day. It is best to do some physical exercise for relaxing. But also the opposite holds. Suppose you come home from a full day of construction work. You are probably physically exhausted. Solving some brain puzzles, will help your body to rest optimally. So, whenever you are physically or mentally exhausted, do some exercise of the opposite type before you go to bed and you will sleep very well. Good luck!

Luk Claes, System Administrator (Ghent University)


In education there are three levels of learning: knowledge, insight and attitude. Our education focuses too much on the former ones, whereas the latter deserves more attention. How can we teach our students to become independent, responsible, critical, professional and creative people?

I believe this is a matter of synchronising efforts between different lecturers to communicate the same requirements and to apply the didactic principle of consistently guarding the borders that we have set.

Independent problem solving, professional communication, critical (self-)evaluation are examples from attitudes that we - as teachers - complain about. At the same time, we often neglect to communicate our expectations, to agree on some rules that make sense both for us and for the students and to stick to these rules no matter what.

Jan Claes, Postdoc Business Informatics (Ghent University, www.janclaes.info)