Shravy Valet is a technical translator. “I function as the translator between our technical and business development/sales teams, bringing the latest technological solutions to the right clients,” says Valet, director of strategy and innovation for Vectrus.
To accomplish this, she must be aware of cutting-edge solutions, research and development, and have a deep understanding of the challenges Vectrus clients face. “I use my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in engineering, combined with my MBA, to bridge this gap for Vectrus,” she adds.
Recently, Valet worked on a project for the U.S. military to integrate, analyze, and visualize data from various chemical, biological, and radiological sensors and detection systems to detect and alert the military of any imminent threats. Valet’s team worked closely with various competing original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), vendors, subcontractors, and government and military personnel to deliver this complex system successfully.
With the company since 2016, Valet started with SENTEL, which Vectrus acquired in 2018. As a bio-medical engineering major, she was attracted to working in the defense biotech industry. And she stayed for the opportunities for advancement and leadership as an engineer.
“Often companies can silo you into a technical track, but, at Vectrus, my leadership championed and advocated for my growth as a leader, including being supportive of me pursuing my MBA as I worked full-time,” she shares.
A leading provider of global service solutions, Vectrus is head-quartered in Colorado Springs, CO. What makes the company a great place to work, according to Valet, is that good ideas are given credence, no matter where in the organization they originate.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re an entry-level engineer or a subject matter expert with 30 years of experience. If your idea has merit, then it’ll be heard by senior leadership. Such a meritocracy encourages everyone to advocate for the best ideas boldly, enabling us to deliver the best final product to our clients,” she elaborates.
When searching for your first or next position, Valet advises casting a wide net. “Early on in your career, it’s just as valuable to learn what career path might not be right for you as it is to figure out your ideal career path,” she advises.
She also recommends seeking a position where management and leadership support their employees and advocate for them and their career growth goals. “The culture and people at the company you work for are just as important for being happy in a position as the technical work itself.”
To succeed in this field, young woman engineers should practice communicating and failing. “Being comfortable articulating complex technical ideas succinctly to a group is a valuable skill set and key to being a successful engineer. Similarly, although slightly less straightforward, it’s important to practice failing. It’s important not to let the pursuit of perfection hinder progress,” believes Valet.
“It’s beneficial to shed the fear of failure as early as possible in your career as failing is an excel-lent way to improve and innovate as an engineer,” she adds.