5 Common Personality Traits of a Successful Engineer

5 Common Personality Traits of a Successful Engineer

If you’ve considered pursuing a career in engineering but aren’t sure whether you’d enjoy it or be a good fit, this article is for you.

One of the best ways to figure out if a certain job would suit you is to get to know a few people who already have that job and see if you find something that you share in common.

Engineers share some personality traits that make them good at their job. Just like most writers are introverts and most politicians are extroverts, there are key markers that most engineers can have in common.

Obviously, not every engineer is going to have the exact same personality but to succeed as an engineer there are a few skills and characteristics that a person must have.

Here are five of them:

1. Detail Oriented

When working on a project, it takes intense attention to detail for an engineer to make sure every piece of the puzzle fits.

Whether it is trying to find a solution to a problem or ensure that no data is overlooked, engineers have a job that must be precise.

Without this precision, when their project gets handed off to be used in the real world, they risk the failure of the project entirely.

Closely interlinked with this personality trait is the ability to concentrate intently on any aspect of their project.

Engineers are orderly and organized in both their professional and personal life. They often feel uneasy in a chaotic situation or space. You’ll find that their offices and homes are very neat and clean.

2. Naturally Curious

Engineers like to find out how things work. If you’ve been one of those kids that always wanted to take things apart to try and figure out how to put them back together, you’d be a great engineer.

Not only do engineers want to know how things work, but they are always dreaming up different ways to improve things. When they purchase products, many times they are dissatisfied because they could have built it better.

Engineers are willing to try to create the same product several different ways and test the integrity of each to find the best possible path.

3. They Think Outside the Box

It takes a lot of creative and critical thinking skills to be an engineer. They must be able to look at one problem from multiple angles and find the best solution.

Engineers have brilliant minds that aren’t closed to any possibilities. In fact, it is almost always the craziest offhand ideas that go on to become one of the best inventions ever.

4. Engineers Adhere to Logic

While engineers do have to think creatively to come up with possible solutions to a problem, they use logic to determine whether each possible solution is viable.

They don’t go on a whim but use a series of tests to see if their theories would work. This will often require high level mathematical and scientific knowledge, which all engineers should obtain in college.

If the data doesn’t support the design, then they go back to the drawing board.

5. They are Perfectionists

Engineers will repeat a step over and over again until they get it right. They are never satisfied with an incomplete piece of work. Every miniscule part of their project must be exactly how it should be, or they aren’t yet finished.

They will spend hours honing one tiny part of their current project. Once they’ve decided that they have found a solution, there is little that can be done to sway them.


These personality traits focus on the good qualities that an engineer can bring to the table. Of course, engineers can be stubborn, insensitive, and love to argue, but we must acknowledge that this is all part of the package.

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