By Brian Frascella, Contributing Writer
Brian Frascella is a product engineer at Moog Inc., an MBA candidate at the University at Buffalo and A contributor to the Careers and Education in Engineering blog on designnews.com. Design News has invited Brian to occasionally share his thoughts on his transition from college to the world of work. In today’s post, Brian offers advice on how to get noticed (in a good way) as a young engineer.
What? Just because Letterman has one, I can’t?
10 Take all of the jokes about how young you are in stride. - The people who start them are the ones that are jealous. If someone is poking fun, it means they respect you enough to do so.
9 Be a sponge. - There will most likely be decades of experience around you, so take advantage of it. Besides, if engineering school taught you anything, it was how to learn.
8 Be confident, yet modest. - This isn’t Hollywood. Nobody likes a young gun who tries to run the show.
7 Remember names and stories. - If you meet someone, learn something about them. This practice will pay dividends down the road.
6 Develop a good relationship with your boss. - Understand his or her goals. Your boss should be your biggest advocate, and you should be his or hers. Do you make it possible for your boss to be honest with you?
5 Befriend the individuals who touch the product. - If you make these colleagues your best friend, your managers will marvel at how effective you are.
4 Look the part. - Not like you were just voted off the island.
3 Immediately admit wrong-doing. - You will make a mistake. Apologize, and ask what you can do to make things right. Then, get past it.
2 Use your unique skills. - Draw on all the things that have helped you get to where you are in your career so far. Your colleagues, especially the more experienced ones, have an entirely different set of experiences. Don’t try to copy them, complement them.
1 Be a worker, not an idea dispenser. - Everybody has opinions and ideas. For some, that is as their primary job. Do the difficult work to make sure that projects continue to progress. It will not go unnoticed.
Brian graduated from Binghamton University with a BSME; he’s en route to receiving his MBA from the University at Buffalo in 2011. Despite entering engineering school with the hopes of someday designing skis, his interests later steered him toward the realm of control electronics. Brian has worked with the Moog Industrial Group in East Aurora, N.Y., in its Electric Flight Simulation product line since 2007 as a Product Engineer.