Engineering is a popular career, and for good reason. It’s stable and well-paid, and there are numerous different areas of focus. But you might feel stuck if you don’t create a long-term career plan. If you’re ready for a high-end engineering career, here are some steps you can take to make your dreams a reality.
Define Your Goals
The first step is to decide what you want out of your career. Do you want a corner office? A future consulting business? Or maybe you want to become the go-to technical person in your firm. Figuring out your long-term goals is essential to building the right career ladder.
Determine Your Track
Your career track will become apparent after you have defined your goals. If you’re more interested in remaining hands-on, you’ll probably follow an individual contributor track. This gives you progressively more responsibility for each project without jumping to management. It can also be a strong pathway for a future consulting career.
If you want to focus more on people than projects, you’ll want to follow a management track. As you move up the ranks, you’ll be less hands-on with each project and more responsible for ensuring all the moving pieces (people, products, and processes) work together.
Note Specific Job Titles
The final step in laying the groundwork for a high-end engineering career is finding out what job titles are part of the track you want. For example, if you’re pursuing an individual contributor track, you might start as a junior engineer and then work up to a senior engineering position. Some companies also offer jobs such as principal engineers over senior engineers.
If you’re interested in a management career, your job titles will probably start with something like team lead and gradually progress through several manager roles. Eventually, you could reach a position such as vice president of engineering.
It’s important to note that your decisions now are not irreversible. If you start down one track and then decide you would rather switch, it’s almost always possible. The experience you have gained will still serve you well. But it only makes sense to go ahead and choose a direction to start, as this gives you plenty of time to maximize your high-end engineering career.
PEAK Technical Consulting has created connections with employers nationwide, where you can find projects and roles to make the most of your abilities and advance your career. Since 1968, PEAK has helped engineering professionals find jobs with flexibility, challenges, and rewards. We are committed to giving you the resources and support you need to build the career of your dreams.
Contact a PEAK recruitment expert today if you are looking for employers and opportunities that will take your engineering career to the next level and help you achieve your goals.