How to be the best engineer in the world is a serious undertaking. Graduating engineering school is undoubtedly a gratifying achievement that only those who have experienced the complexity of its curriculum will understand. It isn’t the end of it, however.
Even if you landed a promising job with an engineering firm, it is an incredibly competitive field and quite subject to layoffs if there is an economic crisis. But you can prepare yourself to strengthen your career and make sure you stand out from your peers. See below a few tips to improve yourself as an engineer.
First of all, learning the core business strategy of your company is crucial. This is, nevertheless, beyond what you learn in engineering school. You will have to learn more about marketing, sales, business development and customer service in order to be prepared for a high-ranking job at your firm or anywhere else.
As in any business, your focus should be on your customer. On every aspect of your job, you should be asking yourself how exactly does this impact the client and what can you do to solve your customer issues or questions. You’ll need to be attentive to detail and always be updated with the latest industry and market analysis, and of course, know what the competition is doing.
A general rule for anyone wanting to climb the career ladder, is to always be learning something. So, if you’ve just graduated, you can be looking at an MBA, learning a new language, developing your programming skills, or just teaching yourself to improve as a leader through coaching and effective communication.
Remember: Your hard skills, like your degree and other qualifications, will fill out the basic pre-requisites for your line of work. The soft skills, on the other hand, will ensure your career progress or break it, if not properly developed. The former pays off with hard initial work, but the latter pays off even more, with constant improvement. It is essential to maintain a good work-life balance.
As a general engineering rule, you should embrace change. With the current political, social, environmental and economical changes, the industry is always evolving and adapting itself. There will be many jobs in the next decade that don’t even exist yet. What won’t change, however, is the problem-solving, methodology and teamwork required to any engineering project. As this field becomes closer to Information Technology and similar areas as time passes, you should expect to see things change on a whim that everyone once thought there was only one way to do it.
You will need to stay flexible with an open mind in order to see the opportunities engineering will bring you. Keep in mind that you can become skilled at a specific work or field in a short period of time but achieving your goals takes time and persistence. Becoming successful should be viewed as training for a marathon, not a sprint race. It isn’t worth to become successful if you are not healthy or happy with yourself. Always set your priorities straight and follow achievable goals. Work hard, but work smart. There you have it, a few ways on how to be the best engineer possible, do some more research and hopefully you will achieve your dreams!