We think we have the latest methods, the most up to date innovations, the best manuals & quality controls, the most advanced IT system and the smartest diagnostic algorithms. No one else comes close to our lab. We must be the best!
We are ahead of the game?
We sometimes forget that whilst we are busy in our own little world looking after our patch, everyone else is doing the same for their respective laboratories or workplaces. It can therefore come as somewhat of a shock when suddenly it dawns on us that you may not be that advanced after all. You might be ahead in one area, but behind in others.
Do anything and everything you can to visit other labs and meet with colleagues who have different areas of expertise than yourself. Use any excuse you can! It’s not just useful, it is completely essential. See how others do things. Don’t be surprised to find that the issues that your lab face are uncannily similar to other laboratories, both locally and internationally.
The world of laboratory microbiology is currently moving at a frightening pace, certainly quicker than I can ever remember. Think about bacteriology automation, multiplex PCRs and the use of IT logic to develop testing algorithms for starters. No one individual can keep pace with everything.
Team work and information sharing is key in keeping up to speed.
Rest on your laurels and you are dead in the water in this profession.