An engineer’s typical day starts with catching up with onsite projects and reviewing emails. Obviously, engineering issues are a priority. Project and engineering meetings take place throughout the day. Usually, the topics of discussion are logistic, cost, and design aspects of major projects.
Engineers also work on project documents such as financial forecasts, scope of works, and project schedules. Moreover, they review or create detailed drawings. They go to construction sites, evaluate commissioning duties, and help with any problems that arise.
Any successful engineer will tell you it’s difficult to strike a balance between practical experience and theoretical knowledge. Yet, it’s definitely an effort worth making because there is no other way to guarantee your decisions are correctly engineered, cost-effective, and practical.
Often, opinions regarding a project will differ even among engineers, not to mention differences between engineers, field technicians, and managers. Contrary to popular belief, engineers need very good communication skills because every project is a team effort.
In addition, engineers need to spend a lot of time on engineering reports and documentation. Issues of accountability and traceability are critical in order to ensure engineering due diligence.
Rarely are two engineering projects the same. Moreover, engineers who work on national projects get to travel across the country and work with all kinds of people. As they are involved in projects with different regulations, they can learn from designers, technicians, and other engineers with different backgrounds. They are always onsite for meetings and training, enriching their practical, hands-on experience.
What Skills do Successful Engineers Have?
One of the most important required skills in engineering is teamwork – the ability to work together with others towards a common objective. In terms of personal qualities, an engineer needs to be considerate and take other points of view into account. Moreover, they must be willing to travel and be on location during engineering and construction projects. Finally, they must take responsibility for any and all tasks assigned to them.
An engineer should be positive, dynamic, and enthusiastic about problem-solving. They must be able to work following stringent guidelines, especially when looking for solutions to engineering problems. Last but not least, they must possess the ability to admit and learn from their mistakes.