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Salim Premji, BEngM '95, MBA

Electrical Engineering & Management | Building a career of many perspectives

A willingness to try new roles and explore new opportunities has shaped Salim Premji’s career.

In the 25 years since he earned his degree in electrical engineering & management, Premji has worked for several of Canada’s biggest companies, as well as a start-up telecommunications company.

He’s held positions in sales engineering, product management, marketing and operations. And along the way, he added an MBA to his resume.

“I believe that my openness to taking on different roles has helped me solve business and client issues via multiple perspectives,” says Premji.

He adds that his “openness for learning, continuous improvement and focus on communication” also contributed to his success.

Premji is currently Vice President, Professional Services with Harris Computer, a company that produces, sells and supports software for the utility industry.

Both the software industry and his role as leader of a cross-functional team give him great satisfaction.

“I believe that software continues to be a valuable tool for us to improve how we work and relate to one another,” he says. “I also love being able to build and influence a team toward success.”

Premji says that two key transitions helped shape his career.

The first was an early decision to join a start-up company as a product manager.

“The company grew very rapidly, and I was able to learn many aspects of business management and technology,” he says.

The second was a shift into a sales role – “this was supposed to be a move to ‘get some sales experience,’ but ended up being a great 10-year career in sales,” he says.

His advice to today’s student engineers is to focus on creating new worlds and working with people to build good futures together.

“Also, build skills to work and relate with others - communication, collaboration, learning together,” he says. “Be courageous and open to new and exciting possibilities. And finally, keep working hard, but have fun along the way.”

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