Welcome to Action #7, Develop The “3C” Skills…Caring, Communications and Career. So are you wondering what I mean by the “3C” Skills?
Probably the easiest and simplest answer is to put them under the big umbrella of soft skills, or the slightly smaller umbrella of people skills.
There’s no question about the first C…Caring. It’s a people skill.
Employers today are looking for team players. They want engineers who not only know how to get along with others, but who want to get along with others.
Caring is a vital thing to understand and deliver as an engineer.
It also won’t hurt for you to add a special kind of caring called humility to the mix, especially if you’re fresh out of college.
Just as my manager in 1979 told me during my first internship, communication skills are paramount in the engineering world.
With his comment in mind, let me challenge you with some questions…
- Can you write, and I don’t mean a tweet or a text? I mean can you write a thorough and succinct project report?
- How are you at email?
- Can you connect honestly and authentically, face to face with another human being?
- Can you listen and give others your full attention?
- Can you inform, but also wow a group, with a presentation?
- Do you know how to facilitate an effective meeting?
Well, you should know that corporate America runs on conversations, relationships, commitments, collaboration and follow-through.
Work gets done in organizations by way of requests and promises. It’s that simple.
Here’s the thing…
You can be the smartest guy, or woman, in the room, but if you can’t effectively communicate what you know, and what you’re willing to do, then you’re of little value to an organization.
Finally, let’s talk about career skills.
What’s your knowledge and understanding of such things as career development and management, resume design, interviewing techniques, and the overall hiring and job transition process?
In the old, old days, engineers like my dad would typically stay at the same company for 30-40 years.
But the idea of working for one employer your whole life went out the window years ago when the wave of pink slips started in the late 80’s.
Personal Career Management is Different Now
I’m sure you already know that today you can expect to switch jobs numerous times over the course of your career.
Given the likelihood of this, it’s critical that you know how to manage the ins and outs of your own career.
But to do this effectively, you first need to understand the career development puzzle, the pieces, the nuances, and how it all fits together.
Don’t Wait, Now Is the Time
College is the perfect time to begin reflecting on how good you are at all of the 3C Skills…Caring, Communications and Career.
Maybe more importantly, college is the perfect time to start ramping up your skills in all three of these critical areas.
If desired, you can view this entire post in the YouTube video below:
Question: How strong are your “3C” skills? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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A SUCCESS MANIFESTO FOR 21st CENTURY ENGINEERING STUDENTS