The Right Career Path for Engineers
Whether you’re a student, an engineering graduate, or just feel like a career change, knowing which career path will suit you can be a very difficult decision indeed.
This can be harder when we have parents or people around us who place certain expectations upon us.
Not everyone is lucky enough to be born knowing they want to be a doctor, or pianist.
And it is increasingly difficult to find a career that you are both passionate about and pays the bills.
The first thing engineers have to evaluate is the external pressures you might be facing.
For example, your parents may expect you to follow on with the family business, or perhaps they would like you to have a stable and financially rewarding job.
Being able to decide for yourself is very important when it comes to choosing the right career for engineers.
You don’t want to find yourself twenty years into a career you don’t like but are afraid to leave.
Evaluate your skills and abilities
Knowledge is power.
Engineers must create a list of their skills, and create another of your passions.
Seeing your skills and passions written out in front of you may make it clearer for you to see the potential overlaps and jobs that may fit well with you.
It may also be a good idea to brainstorm jobs that require skills that you know you have and methodically go through and see where you may be a good fit.
Ask lots of questions
It is critical to be analytical and insightful when it comes to engineers career choices.
Instead of basing it purely on emotion or gut-feeling, try to break it down into rational and logical questions.
Decide what is important to you- whether that is job security, financial compensation, flexibility, creativity, and then ask yourself what you really excel at. Npt just what you enjoy doing, but what you can do day after day without experiencing fatigue or burnout.
Of course, it is normal to be in a job that isn’t everything you had dreamed of, particularly as you are making your way up the career ladder and just starting out.
Don’t just follow your passion
It is crucial that you are honest with yourself. If you want to become a pilot but are colour blind, this isn’t exactly realistic.
Of course, following your dreams is crucial to your overall happiness.
If you want to learn more about how you can become a pilot in the USA then do your research about the requirements. Satisfaction with your career is also about how suited you are to it.
The day to day tasks of a job may not be what you expected. Even in your ‘dream’ job, the reality may be very different from what you expected.
Try to get work experience
If you are struggling to find full-time employment consider getting paid or unpaid work experience in an industry that you would like to try out.
Instead of compromising yourself by working in a new industry and then realising that you are not suited to it, try a couple of weeks or months work experience.
This is often in the form of internships, and sometimes unpaid, however work experience gives you the opportunity to get hands-on experience which you can then use as a way to climb the career ladder, or decide if it isn’t for you.
There are many ways you can find your perfect fit, by interning, volunteering, shadowing people, or simply speaking with people in a particular industry and asking about their personal experience in their job role.
Decide what is truly important to you
What makes you truly happy in life?
If it is money, then you probably won’t find that in an artistic industry, and you may be better looking in tech driven industries.
Similarly if you are looking to help people, then you may need to look in a service-based industry or a charitable organisation.
You may also find that you thrive when you deal with people face-to-face, or prefer being behind a desk. No one person is the same, and even within industries there are many different kinds of roles to suit each individual. It’s just a case of finding which one works for you.
Plan plan and plan
Nobody ever said that finding your dream career was going to be easy.
You have to put in the hard work, and plan ahead in order to get to where you want to be. We are engineers after all and we love to plan.
This is your life after all, and no-one is going to want you to succeed as much as you do.