Your Keys to Career Success


Success in the workplace requires a combination of skills, competencies, and experience. When recruiting talented engineers, employers assess your potential by reviewing your documents and interactions via interviews and events. Based on research by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), ECS spotlights 8 Keys to Career Success. Does your resume reflect some of these competencies? When interviewing, are you able to confidently show your abilities related to critical thinking, communication, leadership, etc.? Let’s take a look at the 8 Keys below.

Career & Self Development: Identify, articulate, and proactively develop knowledge and experiences that promote continuous personal growth and professional success.

  • Most people are used to articulating their strengths during an interview, but your career development capabilities extend beyond that interaction. Attend skill-building workshops and reflect on your goals to ensure consistent professional growth.

Communication: Articulate thoughts and ideas effectively in written and oral forms to a variety of audiences.

  • Both your interview and resume are prime examples of your oral and written communication skills—that’s why refining your confidence with both is so important. Volunteer for class presentations, schedule a mock interview, and have several people review your resume to avoid any errors.

Critical Thinking: Analyze issues, make decisions, and overcome problems by interpreting facts and exercising reason.

  • Critical thinking skills are put to the test every day during your engineering coursework. The tough part often lies in explaining your decision-making process. Practice the behavioral interviewing STAR method.

Equity & Inclusion: Equitably engage and include diverse individual, community, and global viewpoints, and actively take part in anti-racist practices that challenge systems of racism.

Leadership: Use empathy to guide others, recognize strengths, and achieve common goals.

  • Leadership isn’t only found in a title. The skills of a leader require care to build, whether that be through volunteering, part-time work, or community involvement. Consider where you have used your emotional intelligence to guide others towards a shared goal.

Professionalism: Demonstrate personal accountability, integrity, and ethical behavior with the larger community in mind.

  • Consider the impact your actions have on the people around you and take accountability for yourself. This means owning up to your mistakes and taking the appropriate steps to work towards recovery.

Teamwork: Build and maintain collaborative relationships to work effectively with others towards common goals while appreciating diverse viewpoints and shared responsibility.

  • Who doesn’t love a class project? These are the experiences where your patience, leadership, delegation, and conflict resolution skills are often put to the test. Reflect on your experiences within a team, the role you took on, and how you navigated it—this is sure to come up during interviews!

Technology: Leverage digital technologies ethically and efficiently to solve problems and complete tasks.

  • Sure, you may have a tablet, phone, and laptop at your fingertips at all times—but, do you know how to use the technology on hand most effectively? Employers are looking for candidates to implement their critical thinking skills when determining when, how, and what technologies to use in a given situation.

“Action is the fundamental key to all success.” – Pablo Picasso