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The Productive Researcher
Online course


Our half day courses are the most popular, but we can also provide most courses as 1 hour, 90 minute and 2 hour stand-alone courses, or connect these together into a series of sessions running over a few weeks or months. Set up a call to discuss how we can adapt this course to your needs.

Our online courses are just as interactive as any face-to-face training. They are specially designed so you get more engagement in ways that are not possible when everyone is in the same room together. Online courses are a great way to keep colleagues connected and inspired. 

Since it was introduced in 2013, this course has become the most widely used resource to train researchers in impact around the world, having been used by over 200 institutions in 55 countries to date. We regularly train across every Russell Group University and the majority of other research-active Universities in the U

Course description

Find out how you can become significantly more productive as a researcher in a fraction of your current working day. Rather than learning (yet more) time management techniques, you will learn new ways of thinking that will reframe your relationship with work.


The course is based on Prof Reed’s book, The Productive Researcher, in which he draws on interviews with some of the world’s highest performing researchers, the literature and his own experience to identify a small number of important insights that can transform how researchers work. The course is based on an unparalleled breadth of interdisciplinary evidence that speaks directly to researchers of all disciplines and career stages.


Prof Reed’s publication rate, grant income and levels of impact are unusual for someone who works 37 hours a week and never works weekends, especially given that he does this whilst running his spin-out company, Fast Track Impact. So what’s going on?

How does it work?


The course works by shifting you from focusing on tasks to focusing on priorities, linked to your values and identity. By working regularly on your most important priorities, even if only for a small proportion of the working day, you can become increasingly motivated to make time for these priorities, creating a powerful positive feedback loop. Rather than encouraging you to extract ever more productivity from your working life, the emphasis is on using your new-found productivity to get better work-life balance, and by resting well, working even more effectively. This course will make you more productive, more satisfied with what you produce, and enable you to be happy working less, and being more.


Key benefits:

  • Leave with practical tools you can use immediately to prioritise limited time to achieve more ambitious career goals

  • Gain a deeper understanding of the values that underpin your work, and the reasons why you feel time pressured

  • Identify priorities that are as much about being as they are about doing, and that are stretching, motivational, authentic, relational and tailored to your unique strengths and abilities

  • Turn these into an “experiment” to make practical changes that create a positive feedback loop between your priorities and your motivation, so you can become increasingly focussed and productive

  • Write a message to your future self and receive an email after a month from Prof Reed to remind you of the commitments you made during the course and offer help, increasing the likelihood of lasting change

  • You get a PDF and hard copy* of The Productive Researcher (2nd Edition), and Prof Reed answers all queries from participants within a week, to ensure you have support to change your impact culture for the better.

*Available when you book half a day's worth of courses or more

What does a typical day look like?

View course slides

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What do other researchers say about this course?

"[Doing the course online was] really useful and engaging.”


“Inspirational day”


"I learned a lot about good ways of doing online delivery and the functionality that Zoom has!"

“Very beneficial and eye opening.” - Lecturer


​“I now aspire more to be an inspiring researcher, and realise that productivity is both ‘doing’ and ‘being’.” - Post Doctoral Research Assistant


​“I liked that I am going away with a workable plan at the end of the day” - Professor


​“I like the structured approach, the build-up and especially the space and time to think. It has changed my approach to goal setting entirely. My whole work goal emerged entirely from the values I had identified in my personal life and I now have something to aim for that I really believe in – thank you!” - Professional Services


​“Food for thought or a great kick start to moving forward.” - Senior Lecturer


​“I’m switching from being task-orientated to being priority-orientated.” - Professor


​“It’s very helpful to be reminded why we wanted to become an academic in the first place, and to reconnect with values-based priorities when we are struggling to get daily routine work done. Thank you!” - Senior Lecturer


“Thinking about what is important compared to how I spend my time is very powerful” - PhD student


​“If I implement these techniques, I see a lot of untapped potential being unlocked, so this workshop is a real eye opener” - PhD student


​“Positive, useful, thought-provoking.” - Professor

​It made me really think about what sort of researcher I want to be. It has given me the time and space to think through ways I might start to achieve this, both in the short-term and in my longer career. It has given me hope that there is a way forward to get work-life balance and it has focussed me on a path to achieve it.” - Post-Doctoral Research Assistant


​"Really inspiring course. Motivated to become a better researcher and person after attending this course. Thanks Mark.” - PhD student


Book now


Half-day workshop £1500 +VAT for 30-40 participants

Includes 30 free hard copies of The Research Impact Handbook, worth £29.99 each.


90 minute workshops £750 +VAT for 30-40 participants

Includes PDF copies of The Productive Researcher book. You can add hard copies of the books for your participants at additional cost.


Read our Terms and Conditions.

We've trained >8000 researchers from >200 institutions in 55 countries:

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