In Book 5 of IEEE-USA’s Women in Engineering eBook Series–Finding Self and Growth, author Melissa Lau’s story isn’t about grand inventions that will bring about the next Industrial Revolution. It doesn’t even have a science award for your usual World-Saving Development, or Life-Changing Design. Rather her story points to the little triumphs in an engineer’s life that make the journey worth the time, the effort and the wanderings that get you there. Even without fanfare or prestige, the author says an ordinary life can be just as remarkable.
With intelligence, insight and humor, IEEE Member Lau (an integrated circuits packaging engineer with Broadcom Corporation, in San Jose), writes about her experiences and growth as a technical professional in Book 5 of the Women in Engineering eBook series. For instance, when Lau was a fledgling engineer, one misstep in the lab almost became what she calls her “million-dollar oopsie.” Fortunately, Lau’s mentor and other colleagues helped her to save the day—along with the costly circuit board she had been testing…
Lau believes success is one of those nebulous words that everyone thinks they comprehend—but thinks most don’t even begin to grasp the nuances of its meaning. Contrary to popular thought, she says, one cannot measure success solely by the numbers on a paycheck; the title on a business card; or the inevitable question, often following every introduction—“What do you do for a living?”
The author learned early on (circa elementary school) that when working to attain perfection, the results are often completely out of our control. Long story short: the school disqualified her from participating in an advanced class—not because of merit, but simply because it had way too many students. “Clearly, to define success using factors outside my control wouldn’t just be haphazard, Lau says, “it would also be setting myself up for failure by definition.” Further, she concludes, “A foolproof definition of success is invulnerable to outsourcing, a weak economy, and changing industry dynamics.”
So what is it?
At least at this point in Lau’s life, success is the constant achieving and appropriate modification of hopes and dreams—in accordance with a consistently expanding perspective of the world and of one’s self.
Download your March free eBook to learn how she does it.
From 1 March through 15 April, IEEE members can get their free eBook by going to: https://ieeeusa.org/shop/careers/ebook-women-in-engineering-book-5-finding-self-and-growth/. Log in with your IEEE Account, add the book to your cart, and use promo code MARFREE18 at checkout.
For Your Listening Pleasure: New! Free Audio Book from IEEE-USA Offers Tips for Staying Sharp Outside Your Company
Have you ever considered how working on a committee or working group in your city or town could help you advance your career, while also contributing to your community? Serving as a volunteer on your local board of education, historical society, or in other civic programs is just one of many proven strategies that engineers, and really—all employees—can use to enhance their non-technical skills for career success, according to author Harry T. Roman.
At this time of rapid change and shifting corporate strategies, complacency can easily threaten an engineering career. Global competitiveness is unforgiving; and if not sharpened regularly, an engineer’s skills can obsolesce quickly. A robust engineering career is all about continuing education. Never forget that during your “sharpening” process, the soft skills are just as important as the hard skills…and that goes for the people you lead and manage. In today’s world, staying sharp outside your company is just as important as staying sharp inside your company.
Download your new free audio book from IEEE-USA at: https://ieeeusa.org/shop/careers/ebook-staying-sharp-volume-2-tips-for-staying-sharp-outside-your-company/
The companion eBook is also available for $7.99 for members, $9.99 for non-members.
CALL FOR AUTHORS
IEEE-USA E-BOOKS seeks authors to write an individual e-book, or a series, on career guidance and development topics. If you have an idea you think will benefit members in a particular area of expertise, please email your proposal to IEEE-USA Publishing Manager Georgia C. Stelluto at email@example.com.
Georgia C. Stelluto is IEEE-USA’s publishing manager; manager and editor of IEEE-USA eBOOKS; editor of IEEE-USA Conference Brief; and InFocus department editor for IEEE-USA InSight.