How Being Different Can Be Good For Your Engineering Career

It pays to stand out from the rest.

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In our ever growing world with a population that just keeps on growing, being different from the rest can be a game changer, especially in your career. Sure, it’s risky, and there’s no telling whether what you want to do could fail or not. But think of all of the new exciting startups that popped out within the past few years. Think of all the new innovative devices they have created that no one has ever thought of before. Think about how they started out filling that one unique niche that hasn’t really been explored before, and how they rose to success because of it.

Source: Vertical Response

So, how do you be different? How can you put in to your advantage? Well, here’s where to start:


First, think about what will make you different. Basically, what niche are you filling? Think about how ARC Hub PNH created the first ever 3D printing business in Cambodia. Think about the SALt LED lamp that was created to provide light to areas of the Philippines without electricity. Think long and hard about what category you want to fill that you know millions of people need. Think about a big problem that no one has found a solution to yet. Once you’ve found that and know you’re capable enough of creating that solution, then that is your category.

Your foundation is a three legged stool

You need to create a good foundation for yourself. That would include designing a great company, product, and category, all before moving forward to the next step.

POVs are everything

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Source: Giphy

Reevaluate and reflect on a new point of view. Explore why your company or firm exists and what you want to do for the world. Then, put yourself in the shoes of your target market. What features would your audience want from your product? How well will it fit into their niche? Simply changing your perspective can be extremely eye opening and beneficial.

Condition the market

Source: Odyssey

Remember, because you’re different, nobody is prepared for you. The market isn’t ready for you. You can’t just charge in head first and expect people to flock towards you. You have to prepare them first. Help your audience see the problem you define. Show them that you are the solution. Allow them time to think and say “hey, maybe I really did need this after all.”

Remember, no one knew they wanted an iPhone until Apple showed them.

Create an ecosystem

This goes more into the business aspect of things. For your product to be successful, your company needs to be organized and have a stable source of resources. So choose your coworkers, find your suppliers, manufacturers, developers, partners, etc. And make sure they’re the best ones for your needs, and stick to them.

Prepare for your lightning strike

Source: Tenor

Now that you’ve prepared the market for you, it’s time to plan out and pick the date of your “lightning strike”. This is where you shall establish yourself as the first of your category, the “king”, and use the shock value to gain attention and momentum. After that, it is time to mobilize and bring your product out to the market.

Establish yourself, then expand

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Once you‘ve finally established yourself in your category, have a stable market, and have some extra funds to spare, it is time to expand your category. Think about how Amazon didn’t say they would become the most powerful online retailer- they started out by selling books and ebooks. After they’ve been well in that category, they slowly but surely expanded to other areas of retail, until they’ve become the online marketplace giant that we know today.



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Cielo Santos

Engineer. Writer. Artist. Gamer. Musician. She dreams of building a time machine and help kittens take over the world. Is secretly the pink power ranger in real life.


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