Self-presentation, networking and small talk

Seminar PDF

Duration: 1 day

Course type: 10% theory, 90% practical examples

Trainer: Karin Bodewits or Philipp Gramlich

Number of participants: Max. 12


This seminar can be tailored to a gender-specific audience if desired


Do you find yourself at conferences drinking coffee alone or only with your own colleagues? Do you seem to miss every chance to network? Or do you have the feeling you can’t keep the conversation going or can’t even start it in the first place? No matter if you answer one of those questions with a clear “yes” or you simply have the feeling that you could perfect your self-presentation skills, then this seminar might be just right for you!


From the first impression you leave, the conversation that follows to a successful or friendly follow-up… we will cover it during this seminar.


This is an interactive course with role-playing, exercises and real-life examples. There is a special emphasis on communication, networking and body language and how to make your colleagues and superiors aware of your qualities.


Seminar contents


  • Tips & tricks
  • Expanding your network
  • Keeping your network
  • Networking for introverts
  • Social media

Small talk

  • Starting conversations, keeping them going and finding your exit
  • Small talk at conferences & meetings


  • You are a brand! Self-marketing
  • Your own behaviour at work
  • The message you should (not) bring across for success
  • Dress for success

Your personal pitch for:

  • Job interview
  • Trade- and job fairs
  • Conferences and meetings
  • After work

Body language

  • Clear communication without words
  • The first impression

This course can be combined with other seminars, e.g. Oral presentation and Poster presentation to give an integrated seminar “At the conference” of 2-3 days length.


Optional extra-content to this seminar:

Navigating social media as a scientist

(or why you should actually take time for this)


Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, by now, are no longer a new thing. Also for scientists, social media platforms have become an integral networking tool to connect globally, exchange research ideas and results and advance careers. But, what’s a proper way for scientists to make use of these platforms?

In this workshop part, you will gain a better understanding on the current state of digital science communication. In detail, you will learn how scientists may integrate social media into their activities — in a helpful and productive way. The workshop advocates a reflected media usage that keeps a close eye on how and when it is recommended for you to ‘go digital’.


In the two-hour workshop session you will:

– find professional assistance in clarifying your objectives for engaging with social media. Why should I consider social media usage? What are my goals?

– find help in figuring out which of the many media platforms is the right one for you.

– find out how social media may help you explore your career options (e.g. after a PhD or postdoc).

– take first steps towards brushing up your personal professional online profiles.

Peter Kronenberg is currently coordinating a research project at NaturalScience.Careers that seeks to better understand communication design processes at science conferences while studying for a Master’s degree in business management. Besides growing up as a ‘digital-native’, Peter’s fluency in digital media platforms, online marketing and web-promotion has been shaped by his engagement as a freelancer in various management and marketing projects, such as online promotion of Karin Bodewits’ novel You Must Be Very Intelligent: The PhD Delusion, or PR/social media work for Tranzit, a theatre/performance of zusammen leben e.V. (winner of the German integration price 2018).



Karin Bodewits ( or Philipp Gramlich ( )/ Tel: +49 (0)89 99 016 971