On Neighbours recently, Libby wrote a five year plan, with her personal and career goals. It got me thinking & I think it’s time I did something similar. My goal was to work in F1 & I’ve worked hard & had a bit of luck to achieve that, but now its time to look a little deeper than that.

Work related goals:

– Get a permanent job by 2013.

At the moment I’m on a rolling contract which has been renewed for a year (longest time yet) so I must be doing something right. With the resource restrictions in place in F1, permanent staff are limited. Graduates within 4 years of leaving uni on a rolling contract don’t count, so I can understand why I am kept on a short term contract. 2013 will mark my 4th year since graduating so it would be nice to have something a little more secure by then.

I do not feel the need to climb the career ladder quite yet to more senior positions as some do after a few years, but that might change after this 5 year plan runs out. I would be quite happy to spend the next five years in my current job as it evolves and as I learn more. Which brings me nicely onto my next aim:

– Spend time learning as well as doing.

There’s lots of people who work longer hours and have more work to fit into their days, however I am still really busy with no time to really appreciate what it is I’m actually doing in car terms. If I get chance to stop and think about it, it’s really interesting to work out how the changes I am simulating are effecting the car. I want to develop this further & I want to be able to predict behaviour & have the numbers back it up, rather than the other way round. That’s also linked into experience as well as learning, so it’s something that will come to me.  In addition I bought Milliken and Milliken (a book about vehicle dynamics) & really want to spend time going through that and refreshing/learning the background theory that we touched on at uni.

Work/personal crossover:

– Be more involved in engineering societies such as the Institute of Mechanical Engineers & Women’s Engineering Society.

I recently attended an event put on by the IMechE (a brewery tour) and have another one planned for the end of the month (Brooklands tour). From a selfish point of view, these are great days out that have been organised by someone else & are free for members so I want to make my membership money work!

My other point of view is that I want to be able to help other young engineers, or young people aspiring to be an engineer & show them what they are capable of. I guess more involved in careers projects really. Doing more as a STEM Ambassador is tied up with that too.


– Family.

Children by 30 seems quite scary when you are 25 and don’t have a maternal bone in your body, but I can feel the hormonal tide changing when I see cute little people & little people’s things in shops. My mum wanted kids whilst she was young after having an older mother and had me at 21, but that was way too young for me to even consider! I still agree with her sentiments though, and don’t want to put having kids off for a career & find myself in my late 30s before I start to think about it.

Another addition to my family that is really important will be dogs. I’m not quite sure how they fit in with an engineering career so they might come along with kids. All I know that it’s not fair to have a dog at home while working the hours I am at the moment, unless I lived by work and was able to go home at dinner time to let them out. And that I’m having a black cocker spaniel and a black Labrador!

Before I have kids I want to get married & enjoy some time with my husband as a couple, even if I have been with him for almost 8 years already (ignoring the ‘hiccup’ last year) 😉  Again I can feel the hormonal tide changing my opinions of a wedding – I used to say I was going to get married in my jeans & keep my surname as why should I take on someone else’s name, but I am coming round to the thought of a dress at least! I have even started having the odd dream about my wedding, my favourite so far has been where me & my dad in a McLaren F1 were front of the procession on the way to the wedding, with a fleet of mini’s bringing the bridesmaids and my mum. Another good one was the first dance was Angels & as the song started, Robbie came through the door & starting performing!!  Obviously its the important things on my mind 😉

– Finances

I have a lot of debt and I really need to learn to be better with my money so that I can repay that quicker than I currently am. I want to be on stable ground and have some savings for a rainy day. I don’t really consider buying a house a possibility because I can’t imagine how many years it will take me to save the deposit, but hopefully the financial market improves so that the percentage required as a deposit to buy decreases. I will be happy having stress free renting in the mean time, just so long as I don’t think about all the money that is going into someone else’s property!

The first step is coming up with a budget so I can see how long it will take me to repay my debt, but hopefully within my five years I have reversed my position to I’m able to pay for that wedding and the kids 😉


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