In this episode, we talk to Nathaniel (Nat) Forgotson, Vice President, and Program Manager at Science Systems and Applications, Inc about effective public communication skills for engineers, and how he used wrestling to train students on public speaking skills.
In this episode, we talk to Felipe Ochoa, Ph.D., M.Sc., M.Eng., B.Sc., a geotechnical engineer who is passionate about geology and geosciences and his career as an assistant professor. We discuss his passion for geology and some of the great projects he has been involved in. He also talks about how having — and beating — cancer affected his personal and professional lives, and provides a very interesting perspective on how he views work-life balance.
Here Are Some of the Questions We Ask Felipe:
- How has mentoring young students enriched your career?
- How did cancer affect your engineering career, and what have you learned from it?
- What does geology entail? Please talk about one or two projects you worked on that stood out to you, and how they benefited your engineering career.
- What about the research that you do — what does that entail?
- How do you manage work-life balance, and how important is it for engineers to maintain a healthy work-life balance?
Here Are Some of the Key Points Discussed In This Episode:
No, really, I’m asking. I’m on the fence on this one.
I understand there are many jobs that can’t be done from home. One of them being civil engineer. I used to be a microscopist. I can’t imagine even asking for “work from home day”’ in that job. But there are definite aspects of being an engineer that can be done from home. And I would strongly argue that they can be done better that way. Having a day at home once a week, without interruption, to get some planning done, catch up on paperwork, write reports, or design in peace would certainly be useful. On the flip side, what about all the potential interruptions?
In this episode, we talk to William A. Modrall, PE, a senior geotechnical project engineer from Wood, who recently hiked the Continental Divide Trail between the borders of Mexico and Canada about his experience during this hike, and how it benefited his geotechnical engineering career.
Here Are Some of the Questions We Ask William:
This is a guest blog by Bryan Christiansen
Finding an equilibrium between our professional and personal lives is a vital ingredient for boosting productivity and improving our physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Behind the elegant facilities and seamless production processes are maintenance engineers who guarantee the reliable and safe operation of equipment. They perform their duties under strict regulations and deadlines.
I ask myself: Are maintenance engineers happy? How do they balance the high levels of stress, frequent burnouts, and personal satisfaction? Here are some of the things that affect the work-life equilibrium and practical solutions to them.
1. Highly Demanding Responsibilities
In this episode, I answer critical career questions from engineers about career planning, licensing, work-life balance, credentials, finding a job, working remotely, and more, and also talk about happiness in your career.
These questions are from a Q&A session where I answered career questions for engineers. During these sessions, I take career questions from engineers on any challenging situation they are dealing with, career planning questions they might have, goal setting, or any other engineering-related questions. If you are interested in joining me on these calls, please check out the link in the show notes of this episode.
“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” ~ Alice Walker
Here Are Some of the Career Questions and Answers in This Episode:
I recently received my mechanical P.E. license. However, having spent most of my career as a quality engineer, how should I make the most of it?
Having a healthy work-life balance is a difficult challenge even in the best of times, but it is becoming more and more necessary during these times of economic stagnation and uncertainty. That is why, in this week’s episode of The Civil Engineering Podcast, Ken Mika, P.E. M.ASCE, a project engineer and office leader for Geosyntec’s Green Bay, Wisconsin office will provide some great work-life balance strategies that you can use to help you along the way.
Here Are Some of the Questions I Ask Ken:
This is a guest blog by Trilby Lawless, BigTime Software
Over the last 10 years, remote work has grown in popularity by 91%. Even though the current pandemic has given businesses no other option but to move to remote work, many have seen it as a silver lining. The benefits for employees are clear: flexible work structures, improvement to work-life balance, job satisfaction, and productivity.
But as leaders and managers, you may think: It’s great for individuals, but how do I make it great for the business?
After all, you need to keep goals and projects moving forward, but managing teams and your firm’s operations simply looks different outside of the office. A new set of challenges can arise.
The good news is that with the right tools in place, it is now easier than ever to make this happen and to make it happen efficiently. In this post, we’ll explore the three most common challenges of managing a remote or hybrid office for engineering firms, and the strategies you need to navigate them successfully.
The goal is to have a new management outlook for remote work, so your firm can find its groove outside of the office and empower your team to be productive and grow.
Let’s get into it.
Challenge 1: Lacking an Operational Process That Fosters Communication and Insight Into Progress and Staff Utilization
In episode 129 of The Civil Engineering Podcast, our fourth episode in our Women in Civil Engineering series, I talk to two female civil engineering presidents from different cities in Texas. They are Julia Harrod, P.E., F.NSPE who is the President of MWM DesignGroup and Bonnie Moss, P.E. who is the President of MBCO Engineering. We talk about the steps they took to become successful civil engineering presidents and they also provide some great advice on how you can become a productive and successful civil engineering professional in your field.
Here Are Some of the Questions I Ask These Two Civil Engineering Presidents:
- What are the ups and downs of being a business owner?
- Tell us about the philosophy of work/life balance.
- How do you prioritize your tasks for the day?
- How did you obtain the necessary financial experience and skills to run a company?
- What is it like to be a civil engineer in Texas?
- Tell us about the hiring process you follow.
- Did you always want to be the president of a firm?
Here Are Some Key Points Discussed in This Episode:
This is a guest blog by Jim Hughes
The number of engineers launching their own startup companies is increasing. More and more engineers are pursuing new entrepreneurial ventures with the dream of becoming their own boss, launching their own product or services, and making a dent in their industries. This has highlighted something that is critical to startup success: employee management, which is a huge challenge.
Employee management covers best practices to retain the top talent who will help you achieve your goals. As a founder, you know that a big part of your success (or failure) is your people. So, as you work your way towards establishing an engineering startup, it is important to equip yourself with knowledge in employee management.