Career Path: Rob Kim, Electrical Engineering Lead at Soofa
What do the career path and day-in-the-life look like for an Electrical Engineering Lead at Soofa?
We connected with Rob Kim to find out!
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Where did you grow up? What did your parents do for work?
I grew up in Moscow, Russia. My dad founded a construction company. My mom used to be a tax inspector, and now she helps my dad run the business.
Where did you go to college? What did you study and what were some of your initial jobs out of school?
I went to Northeastern University to study electrical engineering. After graduating, I worked for a startup called ecoVent as an electrical engineer. Then, I joined Soofa.
What has attributed to your success thus far and has helped propel you to the position you have now?
Working for startups, you get a lot of responsibility. There has been a lot of trust from the leadership team for me to deliver, so that increase in responsibility helped me grow very quickly professionally.
Can you share the high-level responsibilities of your current position as Engineer at
I am responsible for hardware at Soofa. Most of it is on the electrical engineering side of things. That involves everything from prototyping, to reliable operation of the product in the field, to the implementation of scalable processes for manufacturing the Soofa Signs and products.
Any tips for someone considering a career in Engineering?
Most college graduates don’t know exactly what they want to dedicate their life to in terms of work. So, joining a startup allowed me to really understand what side of engineering I’m most interested in. Same goes for any other major. If you’re interested in marketing, you can join a startup and do marketing, and really understand what side of marketing excites you the most.
Day in the Life
Coffee, tea, or nothing?
What time do you get into the office?
What is something that motivates you most in your role?
Walking through the streets of Boston and seeing the product running in the field.
Every day is different, but can you outline what a typical day looks like for you?
I come in at 10 AM and make a bowl of oatmeal and a cup of coffee. Then, I log in to my computer, check email, check Slack, review the performance of the Signs and sensors running in the field, and take a look at the project backlog in Asana. I prioritize tasks for the day and execute.
What time do you head out of the office?
I head out anywhere between 6-8 PM.
Do you log back in at night or do you shut it down completely?
I typically don’t log back in at night, unless I get an alert that a Sign is underperforming.
Any productivity hacks?
I stay productive by keeping everything in Asana, and staying on top of prioritization.
What are the 3 apps that you can’t live without?
○ WhatsApp to communicate with my family and friends
○ Instagram to stay on top of my friends’ social life
○ Slack to stay on top of my work stuff
What project are you proudest of?
Working with a contractor to design a custom power supply for our Soofa Signs was a challenging task, and certainly one of the projects that I’m most proud of.
Who do you admire or call upon for career advice?
My parents have been extremely helpful when choosing my next career step. They trust me to make the right decision, but at the same time can provide another point of view on my career decisions.