In this episode, we talk to Sol Rosenbaum, P.E., CEM, an energy engineer and founder of The Engineering Mentor, about the importance of mentorship and networking in your engineering career and explain how it can benefit your engineering career.
This is a guest blog by Carl Friesen
How can one speech transform your life? If you’re the one giving it, on the right topic, and to the right audience, it can. That’s what it was for me. In 1999, I jumped out of the best job I’d ever had to fulfill my goal of having my own business before I turned 40. Now my attention turned to building a base of clients for my business. I liked the idea of public speaking, as I’d heard it’s a great way to build personal rapport with people who might become my clients.
As a marketing professional seeking to work with engineering firms, I knew that my best audience would be marketing staff. So, I found an organization of marketing people and booked myself as a speaker. Doing that speech involved flying halfway across Canada, from Toronto to Vancouver.
I picked a topic for my speech to serve two purposes. One was meeting the informational needs of my audience — how they could build the professional profile of their firm’s members. The other purpose was to show that I was someone who could get results for them, without it being a sales pitch.
At the end of the speech, two people from different firms came up and introduced themselves. They both became clients. One was a firm that I’d never heard of before, but it turned out to be a global environmental and geotechnical firm that has been my core client ever since. Many of the people I’ve worked with at this firm continued to work with me when they left for other jobs, so my business grows.
That’s why I say that one speech in Vancouver transformed my life.
Five Key Steps for Success as a Speaker
This is a guest blog by Nader Mowlaee
Like all other career professionals, engineers should constantly be evolving in order to move forward in their careers and reach the ultimate goals they are pursuing. There are however some aspects of career advancement that typically happen outside of normal working hours, and the standard education and training path, such as personal development efforts focused on personal brands. This might include picking up a new book to read, taking an online 3D design course, or starting a coding Bootcamp.
Personal brands related actions are different because they enable you to communicate and promote who you are and what you’re destined to do. Such actions allow you to build an online presence, showcase your engineering design portfolio, or even influence other professionals in your field to follow your lead.
Most engineers feel uncomfortable when attempting to build their personal brands. So in this article, I’ll share three simple but important personal branding actions that you can take to enhance your short-term job search results and long-term career aspirations. These three steps will help you in both finding engineering jobs and ultimately finding yourself in a career that matches both your unique skill set and your personality.
Here are three actions related to personal brands that may be helpful in your engineering job search or career journey overall. [Read more…] about 3 Actions Engineering Professionals Can Take to Build Their Personal Brands
In this episode, I answer some questions from our listeners and subscribers about building communication skills, improving public speaking, and strategies for overcoming being overqualified for a position you want.
Here is the summary of the questions and answers discussed on how to improve communication skills and deal with being labeled as overqualified:
Expect Murphy’s Law to Apply to all Engineering Presentations You Give is a guest post by Shoots Veis, P.E.
I’ve had the honor of speaking to thousands of engineers across the world over the years, which has helped me to understand why public speaking is so important to any professional. It gives you the ability to reach and impact a lot of people.
That being said, there’s been a few times, where I showed up to speak and everything went wrong, and I had to adjust. This happens more often than not and that’s why I am really excited to share the following story with you from our guest author for this week Shoots Veis, P.E, author of Public Speaking for Engineers, about engineering presentations. Enjoy it…
Don’t Ignore Opportunities to Celebrate Engineering is a guest post by
Shoots Veis, P.E.
It was Engineers Week and I attended a nice banquet to celebrate. The evening commenced with drinks and socializing among local engineers and their guests, followed by a decent dinner. The program began mid-meal, with the emcees telling jokes and getting the proceedings underway. First up, scholarships were given to local high school seniors intending to study engineering. The outreach events from the past year were then highlighted and a new batch of Professional Engineers were given plaques after reciting the Engineers’ Creed. A heartfelt moment was shared when a new member of the Engineering Hall of Fame was introduced and reflected on his career.
The evening went along fruitfully until the Project of the Year awards. All the goodwill and energy in the room built up over the evening was quickly drained from the room with back-to-back dreadful speeches by engineers receiving Project of the Year awards. It was like an iron curtain dropped to halt all of the evening’s enjoyment. The first engineer/speaker received the small project award. He was unprepared to speak about the project, rambled off subject, and could not make himself heard. It was dreadful.
Speech Preparation is a guest post by Shoots Veis, P.E.
I’m always excited when I get to deliver a speech, so I sent in an application to speak at a conference of operators on one of my favorite subjects. I had spent two months with speech preparation and would be able to deliver it a couple of times for practice, between the acceptance at the conference and the day I would speak. My proposal was accepted and I celebrate each time I get to convey the message, because I want my audience to walk away with a heightened appreciation for infrastructure.
Developing the presentation was not a burden because I believe in the issue and expended the effort necessary to develop a good speech. I focused on defining the scope and objectives to fit them into a 30 to 45-minute time frame. I found just the right story to open the speech and used graphical slides to reinforce each point. I practiced several times before my first delivery and made small adjustments to the presentation after each delivery. I have given the speech many times and it has never failed to be a hit.
Five Benefits of Public Speaking is a guest post by Shoots Veis, P.E.
Engineering is a tough job that is dedicated to completing complicated designs that solve complex problems. Solving those problems is not up to the engineer alone, but requires a team effort of partners to secure financing, address the social and environmental impacts, determine the best design options and construction techniques and tackle a host of issues that arise during a project. That means engineers must communicate with others to get their work done and sometimes that means giving a speech to an audience who needs to know what you know. One of the benefits of public speaking related to standing in front of an audience is that it lets your team’s engineering design (and you) stand out in a world that is crowded with experts.
Here are five specific benefits of public speaking for engineering professionals:
This is a guest post by Shoots Veis, P.E.
Engineers use a variety of tools to complete their daily tasks. The list may include a calculator, a computer with the right software, and a book of engineering standards. These tools support the practice of engineering and make for a more productive engineer. They assist the engineer, but they do not replace the practice of engineering.
The same principle applies to an effective presentation. Visual aids, including the set of slides that are shown during the speech, should be a tool to assist with communication, not a crutch for the speaker to lean on because they didn’t prepare. Too many speakers believe creating a slide deck is all there is to public speaking. Instead of properly preparing and delivering a good speech, they rely on poorly designed visual aids to do the work for them.
In this episode, I talk about Lu Ding, PE, PTOE, an Engineer who overcame her fear of public speaking in one year. I specifically discuss her ECSx talk at the Engineering Career Summit in New Orleans this past May. You will also here Lu’s talk in this episode and you can watch it at the bottom of this post.
Engineering Success quotes: