We have read lots of different career advice books over the years and have narrowed them down to a few precious reads. Here is our list of recommended books for career advice, tailored especially for the engineering/technical type. Please note these books are not interchangeable with each other. Each and every book on the list adds something new to the career advice discussion.
Yes, the book is one arguably the most popular book in the Career Advice industry, but for good reason.
Bolles is a master at the job search. Whether you are a college student trying to get an internship or a recent grad looking for an entry-level position, the book has you covered. With very detailed descriptions and how-to’s, Bolles provides a go-to guide for those new and inexperienced to the world of job searching.
And the book is an overall approach to the job search. It contains a mix of personal evaluation, job search and networking strategies. By the end, you will know what jobs you will enjoy and how to apply.
And for this we couldn’t ignore it.
We also recommend you don’t buy the most recent version of the book (2013). Yes, there have been updates to keep it “current” but any editon after 2005 has the same general topics at a much lower price.
Just as the title suggests, Hoffman and Casnocha take a very entrepreneurial approach and apply it to the job search. But, it is more than just a book about the job search, it is a book about making you a better candidate. We all have experiences which are, in the large part, are handed to us. Yes, you do earn the chance to have these experiences, like an internship, but once we have it, cruse control kicks in and the fight to seek out experiences is lost. In essence, people don’t take full advantage of their positions and are in danger of having a lackluster resume. The book seeks to re-prioritize your outlook and help you seek out valuable experiences which set you apart from the crowd.
#3 Get The Job You Want, Even When No One’s Hiring by Ford R. Myers
Born out of the Great Recession, this book is the gorilla guide to getting a job. All the strategies are hard work but get great results. No fluff, just a how-to guide on effectively and efficiently getting a job.
Sugar coating is not a strategy of Myers and you will not find that in the book. At times it will seem a bit abrasive and some of the tactics are a bit “in your face.” But, don’t second guess them too much, these tactics have been proven and will get results.
Great guide for the hard worker not afraid to try unorthodox tactics.
#4 Interview for Success by Ronald and Caryl Krannich
The book is loaded with examples of interview questions and the perfect response. No frills and no fluff, just how engineers like it.
As a bonus, this book also talks about offers and salary negotiation. So, the knowledge in the book will help you not only during your job search but also when you are further down your career path.
#5 Stuff You Don’t Learn in Engineering School by Carl Selinger
Now you have your job, but how can you get the most out of it. How can you continue to learn, improve, and optimize the work experience? Selinger’s book is the answer.
Although the style and voice of the book is very dry, there are lots of lessons to be learned. And none of these “real world” skills were taught to you during Thermo or any other class. An excellent read and highly recommended by our staff.