In this article, we will explore an adaptation of Stephen Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People specifically tailored for engineering graduates. From being proactive in finding efficient ways to complete tasks to prioritizing safety, these habits provide valuable insights for success in the engineering field. Whether it’s seeking to understand technical questions or sharpening one’s knowledge, these habits can help engineering graduates excel in their careers. Plus, we’ll even share a bonus tip on dealing with slow or buggy software. So, let’s dive in and discover how these habits can benefit you as an engineering graduate
Habit 1: Be proactive
Take Responsibility. There is often a more efficient way to complete the task but be careful to balance experimenting with productive work. When trialling a new method, start with small batch iterations and refine the process before upscaling. For a small project, innovation time might be unjustified. For a large project, innovation might make it quicker for the next person.
Habit 2: Begin with the end in mind
Sometimes the end can mean losing work to a dodgy macro or corrupt file. Save multiple versions so that you can easily roll-back a file.
– Problem solving – how will your ‘solutions’ affect other departments or future work?
– Career pathways – Don’t lose sight of your personal goals.
Habit 3: Put first things first
Safety is the #1 priority. As an engineer, you look out for everyone. Safety, safety, safety.
Habit 4: Think win-win
Read the room before starting a revolution. You will see greater acceptance of your ideas if your peers have been involved from the beginning. Time saved for you, and morale boost for them. Try and present things in an interesting way and keep meetings short.
Habit 5: Seek first to understand, then to be understood
Ask technical questions early in the project, or as soon as they arise. If you can show that you understand that facts and fundamentals, then you’ve already won half the battle.
Habit 6: Synergize
If your mate is working hard and you aren’t, offer a hand. Socialising with colleagues outside of work will make office communication less intimidating. When your peers find the courage to speak up, you damn well listen.
Habit 7: Sharpen the saw
Knowledge is an easy advantage to gain. Read books, attend training, review previous projects at every opportunity. Eventually it will rub off on you.
If software is slow or buggy, try a different version. Some features have gotten worse with updates.