Read Paul's Blog below and find the orginal post on LinkedIN.

Paul McCormick, Managing Director at AECOM, one of the world’s largest providers of professional, technical and management support services for transportation, facilities, environment, energy, water and government, shared his "Tips for Success" for young apprentice and Trainees in Civil Engineering.  We felt, these were too good not to share and Paul agreed.  Special Thanks to Paul for allowing us to re-post this on his behalf.  

Apprentices & Trainee Engineers Top Tips for Success

For my second blog/post to all my connections around the world on LinkedIn, I thought it would be apt, on the eve of National Apprentice Week #NAW2015 in the UK, to share what I consider to be the essential ingredients of a successful career for young Apprentices or Trainee Civil Engineers.

As some of you know I started as a Trainee …lets just say a long long time ago!

Myself as Trainee Civil Engineering Technician

The essential development of a strong career from such a young age remains the same today as it did all those years ago. And these days I’m proud to be driving the increased numbers and commitment to #Apprenticeships in AECOM in the UK&I. In fact, several of the executive leaders in AECOM have developed their careers via this long, tortuous, but equally rewarding route.

So my top tips for a busy young professional to achieve success are:

  1. Ensure you work for a company that is prepared to invest in your career by not just funding a day release program but also committing company time and energy in nurturing your career in the workplace.
  2. Work hard at your studies. There will be times when part-time studying all becomes too much; but take a rest and come back to challenges. Make time to perform at your studies and remember you are there for the long game as many of you will need to do 6-12 years of part-time studies to become professionally qualified. The really good employers will be there with you for this long game too and often will be prepared to fund you all the way to higher degrees if you display the right attributes.
  3. Work hard at work. This should go without saying. You need to be visible in the office and be seen as a reliable, can-do, hard-working and helpful individual. It will take time to develop this “presence”, but in the first five years just try to excel at everything you do, and be the person that always helps others to meet their deadlines.
  4. Start building a good CV of projects you’ve worked on and keep this live for years to come. You will need this in 10-15 years’ time when you go for professional recognition/exams (eg. PE/CEng/IEng status).
  5. Emulate elements of people that you admire (professionally that is) from the office or on projects you work on. From the cheerful caretaker to the grumpy but decisive boss…..there are good elements in most people that will help you develop your own unique persona.
  6. Avoid the deflators or negative people. They detract from your energy and won’t be part of your successful career. Develop yourself as a people focused positive person.
  7. Never change jobs, companies or career direction for money. Only opportunities to enhance your career. Imagine yourself in 30-40 years as the best expert in what you want to be; then step back and plan career moves to get you there. Each career move needs to be planned and part of this “life map”, but don’t panic if you fall off the “map”; just climb back on and re-plan a new route to success.
  8. Have Fun. An often overlooked element of work. With most of our careers expected to last 30-40 years you need to try and ensure that you really do enjoy going to work; balancing this with making time for families and friends. Yes there will be low days and I’ve had my share, learn to love what you do and have fun.
  9. Work for a good boss. This is tricky at the start of your career but as your experience develops you will be the one in demand. You can then select to work for the best bosses and greatest companies aligned to your personal vision and goals.
  10. Develop yourself as a “Brand”. In decades to come when you are not a trainee you will want people to see you with a strong profile. Use Social Media (LinkedIn/Twitter etc) in conjunction with traditional media to improve your personal brand recognition.
  11. Develop strong personal ethics. Leaders who stand the test of time have one underlying trait of strong ethics and always do what is right for themselves, their companies and society. Never stoop below your ethical, professional or safety standards……….life is too short.

I love my job and I hope many of you develop strong careers over the next few decades and I will be following you in the media........ I wish you every success in building an outstanding career. #GetInGoFar


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