ABC’s After Landing Your First Engineering Job

Congratulations! You finished your engineering program and are finally making a self-sustaining income with your new position. Do you shut off all of your networking connections, kill the electronic websites like LinkedIn, Monster, Career Builders, etc., absolutely not!

First-time professional jobs have risks associated with them just like you will experience at higher level positions in the future. Possibly more since you have no prior experience ‘under fire’ for any length of time with a previous employer in a similar situation.

You need to know that the job is a good fit for you, and the company will be evaluating if you are a good fit for them. Though many companies have abandoned an ‘official’ 90-day probation period for various reasons, the ‘implied 90-day ‘evaluation’ is alive and well and harder to litigate, which is why it is no longer in writing. Supervisors and senior level executives don’t want to pay an employee that may be marginal for any length of time, so be ready to get tested sooner than later.

What else could happen in the first 3-6 months? A companywide restructuring due to unforeseen economic conditions may create significant layoffs. Or the supervisor who hired you is transferred to another position, and now there is immediate tension with you and your new supervisor. Maybe the group dynamics are bad, and you don’t feel like you will get a fair shake with your peers. Sales have slumped for far too long and layoffs are imminent, your company is acquired, and restructuring begins from the duplication of jobs.  And so it continues, who stays and who goes?

None of the above situations was due to your actual performance perception, or lack thereof. That is why you need a professional presence with the right websites and continue to update your career in case something out of your control happens. There is also the real consideration you can’t grow at the rate you want to with your present company, so you need to become visible by the companies that are hiring. Growing your contacts and networking for many months could help you find the next opportunity you are looking for sooner than later.

Also, once you are working who will you turn to for confidential guidance and coaching to assist you grow your career? If you reveal your ‘weaknesses or needs’ to your supervisor, will they help you overcome them or use them against you? Supervisors are expected to guide your training function, but as I have learned throughout my career, you are the only person that can be in charge and seek the help you need from various resources. Supervisors come in various types, but only a small percentage take the time to help you grow and make a written plan to get you there. The obligatory meeting once a year during the review cycle rarely brings up the topics you  previously discussed to move you forward. That annual meeting is neither a plan nor a career guide you can count on for your first or future promotions.

This is the basis of why I have added my formal Coaching Business to Dan Pastrick & Associates. Our efforts are directed at ‘Coaching for Results’ programs with you in mind. I have partnered with J Salimbene Enterprise which allows Jill to cover Medical Device sales coaching needs, while I work with engineers primarily in the Medical Device space. We both have extensive hands-on experience from junior through senior level positions, which helped us create three and six-month programs with personal coaching sessions by phone three times a month. If you are interested in learning more, click this link and complete the online form to receive a free coaching session. Type in ‘Promo Code 62217’ after your name with an email address and as much information on the form you can complete for a more effective free session. Hoping to hear from you soon!


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