150: How to Continue to Grow Your Career as an Engineer [Podcast]

How to Continue to Grow Your Career as an Engineer

You should want to grow your career. Right? It just makes sense?

But wanting to grow your career is not enough – you have to work at it.

Once we start our engineering career (or any career for that matter), we get busy. Work and life take over, and we are so tied up in just keeping up that we forget we need to keep growing. 

Last week we hit on the subject of WHY you need to grow your career.  

This week we want to dive into some of the HOWs.

How do you grow your career continually and intentionally?

How to Continue to Grow Your Career as an Engineer (Podcast Outline)

  1. Develop a Mindset of Growth
    • Enjoy the game of growth – always explore.
    • Be curious.
    • Be OK with change – it is going to change anyway.
    • Do not be afraid of breaking things.
  2. Learn from successful people/companies
    • Pay attention to the competition.
    • Pay attention to innovations – LinkedIn videos, conferences, things you hear that you might discount as being irrelevant.
    • Think strategically. 
    • “Skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.” (Wayne Gretzky credited quote).
  3. But practically, how?
    • Weekly thinking time – stop for one hour and think.
      • Quote from Zuma Founder Alex Garden as written in Measure What Matters  “…early in your career … you’re graded on the volume and quality of your work. … Now you’re no longer paid for the amount of work you do; you’re paid for the quality of decisions you make.”
      • SO STOP. 
      • Do this.
        • Getaway for 1 hour.
        • Pad of paper.
        • Just think about what you are doing.
        • Think about where it is going.
        • Be quiet and think. No real agenda write down notes and thoughts.
        • Last 15 minutes wrap up – anything you need to do? 
    • Establish quarterly reviews.
      • Set goals – Rocks, Objectives, and Key Results (OKR), otherwise  – at a time to reflect.
      • Do not be scared of spending hours or all day here. Worth it!
      • Do this.
        • Weekly thinking time -but spend more time.
        • Review what you have read lately. What stood out that you might have forgotten.
        • Review your big goals – where are you. Evaluate.
        • Create some ROCKS or OKR for next quarter (keep to less than 10!).
        • Close up the time.
          • Create a reading list for the next quarter.
          • Where do you need to be – conferences, groups, workshops.
          • What do you need to work on and learn? Where can you learn it? 
            • Udemy
            • Books
            • Courses
    • Annual reviews
      • Rethink EVERYTHING. 
        • Goals.
        • Where you want to live?
        • What conversations you had are playing back in your mind?
        • What do you want for the next five years to look like?
      • TWO DAYS IS FINE HERE. 
      • Think company retreats to rethink.
      • Involve your spouse!
      • Create next quarters goals or rocks.

Click here to listen now.


Shout Out

Overwhelmed, by Dale Callihan
RBAuk

★★★★★

“I really enjoyed listening to Dale’s take on this subject, and I think it is a very serious and important one in our culture today. In our society today, being overwhelmed, which can bring on anxiety to maybe depression, is a serious subject. People need to learn to be more introspective about themselves and learn how to help themselves handle it rather than paying psychiatrists or turning to pills to get out of those states of mind. As Dale points out, venting can be a short term solution, but one must be careful who they vent on – do you really know them. That’s why Dale mentioned venting to the dog or borrow one if you do not have one. It can get the best of you, with emotionalism followed by more emotionalism like a dog chasing its tail or like the definition of insanity. A good friend of mine is a psychiatrist, and being a financial advisor I told him 7 years ago that he was going to see his business breaking out of the walls because of the direction our economy was headed. Well, that’s exactly what has happened as his business with the other doctors has tripled, and they needed to move locations. We must learn to say no to committing ourselves to everything, therefore, trying to put some barriers on getting too strung out and losing whatever balance we had in our lives. Loved this subject because if you look at the big picture, from coast to coast, so many people get emotionally disturbed by the littlest things to the biggest. Our country is too polarized in too many ways already. I believe as people have harder times coping, it will add to their own problems getting worse and the nation’s too.”

 

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