In this episode of The Engineering Career Coach Podcast, I am going to give you ten of the scariest things you should do in your engineering career and explain why you should do them. Most successful engineers agree that taking risks and doing things that were uncomfortable in their careers were the things that have helped them most in their careers. I will list 10 possible risks and challenge you to take on one of them, or even one of your own, immediately in your career.
Here are 10 of the Scariest Things You Should Do in Your Engineering Career:
1. Take a Risk at Work
- Think about actions you can take for your organization that can drum up more business and/or improves their bottom line. Consider writing a business plan for such activities. It’s risky because you will need to tell your boss about your idea and follow through and take action on it, but if it pays off, it will be a big risk for you and it might be a risk worth taking.
2. Change Your Living Conditions
- You might need to downsize or up-size the place you live in. Sometimes just changing our living conditions can impact the way we work in our careers. This is because you are in a different setting or atmosphere that might impact you positively.
3. Live More Simply
- Think about some of the things are that you can cut out of your life or even your career that aren’t adding value and just causing you to have more stress.
4. Get a New Certification and Tell Your Boss That You Are Going to Get It
- If you tell people about your intentions of getting a certification, it will motivate you to put the pressure on yourself and to get it done.
5. Sign up to Volunteer for a Society Activity/Event Etc.
- Take the next step in your career and get involved in a professional association or even a board or committee in an association. Commit to it, put your name on it and do it. This will help you to build your skills as an engineer.
6. Volunteer to Write a Series of Articles for Your Company’s Website
- Creating content is a great way of getting your mind going and thinking of different things. It can also help you to build your expertise and to get you known within your industry.
7. Commit to Doing Something Physical like Running a Marathon
- When you push yourself physically, it will help you mentally in your career. Stretching yourself physically also keeps you excited and engaged in life on a regular basis.
8. Ask for a Raise
- If you think you are worth more than you are getting paid for, then come up with a plan on how you can show your supervisor that you are worth more than you are getting paid and ask if they would make an appropriate adjustment based upon the value you provide.
9. Do Something Epic for Your Industry
- Do something out of the ordinary that can drive value to you and your firm and even your industry.
10. Switch Jobs or Careers
- This might be one of the scariest things to do in your engineering career, but if you feel you would like to make a career switch, don’t let anything stand in your way. Do whatever you need to do to make this happen.
The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers. – M. Scott Peck
Resources and links mentioned in this session include:
What is the scariest thing you have ever done in your engineering career?
We would love to hear any questions you might have or stories you might share about the scariest things you have done in your engineering career.
Please leave your comments, feedback or questions in the section below.
To your success,
Anthony Fasano, PE, LEED AP
Engineering Management Institute
Author of Engineer Your Own Success