Four Ways to Climb the Ladder in Your Engineering Career

If you want to climb the career ladder and get ahead, there are many ways to do so. Regardless of whether you have recently started out in the engineering business or you have been in the business for years, it is never too early or too late to try to advance in your career. While having more experience will get you noticed, there are several other factors which will contribute to you getting a managerial position. Building upon your skill set, you can begin to get noticed by your organization. If you are looking to climb the career ladder, read on for some useful advice.

Improve Your People Skills

To be in a managerial position, you must have the correct people skills to get ahead. Unfortunately, managers need more than just knowledge and expertise in their field; they also need to be able to influence others to work and understand the skill mix of their team. This means that if you want to become a manager, you need to look at how you interact with others and determine your own strengths and weaknesses. This includes skills such as time management and delegation, as well as emotional intelligence. Of course, your engineering ability will come into play, but strong communication skills can go a long way in advancing your engineering career.

Showing you can get on with people from all walks of life and different professionals will show to your organization that you have the people skills necessary for a management position. There are many ways in which to refine these skills, including online courses or setting yourself goals. Understanding what emotional intelligence is and how you can achieve emotional intelligence is also very important when looking to reach the higher ranks in an organization. This also means having the confidence to be able to tell colleagues when they are making mistakes, even if they are also your friends. While having a good relationship with your colleagues is ideal, you must also have the ability to lead them if you decide to advance in your career.

Gain Another Qualification

Gaining a master’s degree in any career field can give you that extra edge when looking to boost your career, and this is no different in the engineering field. There are many different master’s degrees in engineering, with an engineering management masters being one of the most popular and well sought-after degrees out there. If you wish to distinguish yourself and stand out from the crowd, a master’s in engineering management provides you with the leadership and communication skills needed to manage in such as diverse professional team.

Luckily these degrees can betaken online, meaning you can study while working. For those who are worried about studying due to lost income, an online degree is the perfect way to still gain a qualification without having to take time out of work. It may be that if you speak to your company, they will offer you some work time in which to complete this degree.What’s more, letting your organization know that you are choosing to study for a master’s will show intuition and may lead to a promotion once you have finished your degree. With engineering being such a competitive field, an extra qualification can help you stand out from the crowd, especially when applying for new job opportunities.


Don’t forget to take every opportunity possible to network. This means attending conferences and seminars and utilizing websites such as LinkedIn. Speaking to colleagues and other workers may mean that you find out about an opportunity you may not have been aware of otherwise. There are also many engineering industry groups which allow you to network and provide information on any conferences or events that are happening near you.

By getting to know people in the field, you will not only raise your profile, you may also be approached by companies. If you choose to gain another qualification, ensure that you look for a university that has good connections too. Many online universities have great networking options, and this provides you with yet another way to get ahead in your career. If you want to find the best guest speakers as well as the engineering events that are coming up this year, then check out

Be Bold and Seek Out Opportunities

Sometimes in your career, it is a case of ‘if you don’t ask, you don’t get’. Asking for new opportunities such as being sent on a course that you have found, or asking to work as part of a project team can be enough to let your organization know that you are ready to excel in your career. Many engineers have not gotten where they are today without seeking out their own opportunities and using their own intuition to get ahead. If there is a project that you really want to work on, even if this is simply watching from the sidelines to gain invaluable skills, just ask.

Never be afraid to ask for an opportunity that could advance you in your engineering career, the worst thing that could happen is that your boss says no. Showing this commitment and courage is exactly the skill set and ambition that companies strive for and even if your opportunity is denied, your name will certainly stick in their head afterwards. This is your career, so take the bull by the horns and ask- being proactive is the best way to begin to climb up the career ladder.

One of the best ways to advance your career in engineering is to gain an advanced degree, as this shows companies that you are willing to go out and study to gain better skills, and these degrees are made to give you the knowledge and experience to jump into a managerial role. You should also look at seeking opportunities and asking for them. Networking is always important in engineering and refining your people skills enables you to develop the skills needed to become a manager. Doing this can help you to get ahead in your role and earn more too.

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