Engineering design and project management go hand in hand, so it’s easy to assume that good design engineers make good project managers. While this may make sense, the truth is not as simple as it seems.
Why Good Design Engineers May Make Good Project Managers
Design engineers are equipped with many qualities we associate with great project managers, for example:
- Solid technical background.
- Good decision-making abilities.
- Able to prioritize.
- Team players
However, as we will see below, effective project management requires an extra gear that not all design engineers do not have naturally.
The Pitfalls That Design Engineers Face as Project Managers
While design engineers possess many valuable skills that can be transferred to project management, not everything is smooth sailing during this transition.
These are some of the common pitfalls that design engineers face when they assume the role of project managers:
- A tendency to concentrate on the fields they are knowledgeable about, delegating the rest.
- Their attention to detail may turn them into micromanagers, stifling the progress of their projects.
- May need to work on their team-management skills.
In short, design engineers may have a head start as design managers due to their unique set of skills. However, if they want to take on a managerial role, they must be prepared to address the potential pitfalls outlined above.
Ideally, a company that wants to assign a managerial role to a design engineer should make everything within its power to smooth the transition. This includes mentoring, constant feedback, and education that helps engineers acquire the skills they need to succeed as project managers.
Learn More About Engineering Design
This discipline is an exciting field with myriad real-world applications. Below are some previous posts you can read to learn more about this fascinating topic.
- 3 Reasons to choose a career in engineering design
- How is engineering design different from other types of design?
- A basic glossary of engineering design: part 1and part 2
- Engineering design for children: 5 useful benefits
- What is the engineering design process?
- The amazing history behind Roman bridges
Darnell Technical Services is an engineering design firm with extensive experience in a vast array of projects.
Our headquarters are located in Santa Ana, California, and we have an office in Las Vegas, Nevada. Contact us today by telephone (714-285-0082 (CA), 702-945-2899 (NV)) or through our social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to learn more about all the technical instruments and materials we put at your disposal.