The Only Engineer in a Business Meeting

Discussion in 'The Club House' started by WebleyFosbery38, May 11, 2014.

  1. WebleyFosbery38

    WebleyFosbery38 New Member

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    Someone sent me this a while back and its so true its scares me. Ive been in a hundred meetings that went like this lately and by the time the meeting is done, I realize why were in such trouble as a Nation!

    http://laughingsquid.com/the-expert...eing-the-only-engineer-in-a-business-meeting/

    Where is Darwin when you need him? "7 perpendicular Lines, only two of which intersect", "A red line drawn with a blue Marker" and a Completely transparent Red line are equivalent to the directives and guidelines Im given almost daily like, "we need a 1" penetration in that concrete wall but because its in a library, youve got to do it silently", My response is something like "Awe darn, my fluffer drill is out for repair!

    Im not nearly as good as the Engineer in this skit at not saying you people are idiots! Guess my future is clearly not management....
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2014
  2. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    impossible.jpg

    I work for a consulting engineering company. I included this photo in a training session for my branch managers, and they loved it.

    This week I had to explain to a customer that NO, we could not drill soil cores in THAT exact location, as it would place the boom of our drill rig 5 ft from an overhead powerline. "Is that a problem?" "No, it is not a problem, because we cannot and will not violate an OSHA standard, especially one that exposes our workers to instant death. Pick another location, or have the power company shut down and ground the line." "But isn't there some way you can do this?"
     

  3. WebleyFosbery38

    WebleyFosbery38 New Member

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    OMG C3, its just crazy the stuff that people think when they cant see basic mechanics in their heads. First clue is when they start rotating the floor plan cause they really have no idea whats up or down or what all those little boxes and symbols mean. The worst are the ones that have half a brain cause they try to prove they are ignorant publicly (usually in a room filled with half wits that hang on their every word), unfortunately, many are either customers or managers.

    Cant fight city hall, I never say no, just yes with reservations. In the end, they will find out sooner or later I was right but by then they will have taken ownership of the real solution as their own and it will be OK to do then! I get paid way too much to babysit but it pays the same to march as it does to fight, Id rather be marchin...
     
  4. Daoust_Nat

    Daoust_Nat Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I am often the only commercial person in meetings with Engineers. I work with great Engineers, so mostly they go well. Every once in a while I have to explain to said Engineers that we have a budget, and cannot make something that does not conform to customer requirements. If the requirement calls out equipment that must work for 20 years, we do not make something out of "unobtanium" that will last 100 years. Of course they remind me that we cannot make it out of heat treated cardboard that may not survive the transport.

    This used to be a problem more often 30 years ago. Now all of the Engineers coming out of college seem to understand the commercial importance, and we are beating technical awareness into the commercial people we hire.
     
  5. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Nat- you are absolutely correct- Elephants that are 2 for a nickel are a GREAT bargain- IF you have a nickel- and need elephants!
     
  6. winds-of-change

    winds-of-change The Balota's Staff Member

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    I think that's what Balota does every day!! :p He is an expert.
     
  7. locutus

    locutus Well-Known Member Supporter

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    It works both ways.


    Sometimes you can't get it through an engineer's head that you're going to mark it with a chalk and cut it with an ax, so there really isn't any need to measure it with a micrometer.:D:D
     
  8. winds-of-change

    winds-of-change The Balota's Staff Member

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    But at least there is no harm done and it IS possible to do it the engineer's way in that case. Albeit probably much more expensive. In the video, they were asking the engineer to do the impossible.

    I got Balota a novelty license plate that says, "I'm an Engineer, not a Magician". :D
     
  9. partdeux

    partdeux Well-Known Member

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    Full disclosure... Licensed Engineer, extensive mfg background, MBA and Masters in program management... Most of my career working in automotive

    Some days I'm amazed I don't start drinking before going to work. The ability to speak both management and engineering has it's pluses and mostly minuses :)

    I need this part design completed AND released before the end of February or we will miss the material required date and have to fly parts to and from China.

    Mgt - We're not ready to roll over on air freighting parts
    Eng - We're still working on the design

    It's what, May 11th and as of Friday I don't have a completed and released design. I'm writing purchased orders for hundreds of thousand of dollars for something that should have cost a couple of thousand. Right now, we're going to miss every single production milestone.

    Just finally got a SIMPLE design released for production. SIX EFFIN MONTHS negotiations with purchasing on who was going to pay for cancellation charges on the part we were cancelling and replacing with a new improved and MUCH LESS EXPENSIVE part. Did I mention that we would have saved the entire cancellation charge in those six months, had we implemented it SIX MONTHS AGO.

    I get the difficult projects. I went to my boss and said "I don't know if I should be proud that I finally got that project finalized and production scheduled or embarrassed that it took almost a year to get there." He said, and that's why you're working for me.
     
  10. TLuker

    TLuker Active Member

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    I've been in so many meeting like that that I couldn't even laugh at the video. I forget the exact numbers but students graduating with an MBA out number the students with an advanced degree in engineering, math, and science combined by about 7 to 1. The reasons for that are pretty obvious and that's because an MBA is easier to get and has the potential to pay much more, i.e. Warren Buffet went to business school. The problem with that is business majors rarely produce anything of value.

    So how exactly did we arrive at this place in our economy where those with no concept of reality get to be the boss and are paid more? I thought a free market economy was suppose to reward innovators rather than the clueless? I wonder if Henry Ford would last more than a week in a modern factory? :confused::confused::confused::confused::confused:
     
  11. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    In a factory in today's workplace, Henry would not last a day.

    The HR folks would eat him alive.

    The video remind me of the old Three Stooges gag- where Moe orders breakfast- eggs. Sunny side down- and DON'T turn 'em over.
     
  12. partdeux

    partdeux Well-Known Member

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    When we decided to pay more for the creation of money than the creation of product.
     
  13. Balota

    Balota ... but I used to play keyboards.

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    And that plate hangs in my office... from 7 mutually perpendicular red lines, 2 of which are drawn with green ink and the rest with transparent ink... But our sales group has decided that all decorations in the office must be blue because that is the favorite color of our most recent dupe... err, I mean, customer... so I am considering how to bleach out the yellow from the green ink so it can become blue again... Perhaps some of that eye bleach everyone is always talking about...

    And they're coming to take me away, ha, ha...
     
  14. John_Deer

    John_Deer New Member

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    I take remodeling jobs as way to have an experienced crew of men to keep my stuff going. I will not take a job for any kind of construction professional. I am not going to have someone who cannot drive a nail talk down to my men who have a combined 150 years of construction experience.
     
  15. Balota

    Balota ... but I used to play keyboards.

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    No, he wouldn't.

    First he would try to fix something (a big no-no). Second he would try to standardize something by actually trying to do the same thing twice in a row (another big no-no). Third he would question the intelligence and possibly the lineage of the naysayers who say no 4 times (see above). This is an HR compliance issue calling for immediate dismissal and potential legal action.

    Game over. After all this is America and our national past time is baseball. Three strikes and you're out!
     
  16. Balota

    Balota ... but I used to play keyboards.

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    Maybe you should turn your crew loose on that "professional" who probably has a combined 150 days in the workforce. Experience and guile will always win out over youth and enthusiasm...
     
  17. DrFootball

    DrFootball disappointed & disgusted, But DETERMINED... Lifetime Supporter

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    "Unobtainium" I've heard of that! Wasn't that what they tried to make the First Stealth Tank Out of??


    Sent from my iPad using Firearms Talk
     
  18. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Doc- we are not sure about that first stealth tank. They built the prototype, and parked it....... but we can't seem to find it now.
     
  19. Vincine

    Vincine New Member

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    This all sounds familiar.

    When I was a studio manager for an ad agency, I once had an account executive (AE) DEMANDING to know when he would get his presentation materials. I asked him when he would get me the layouts. He didn't know.

    I threw him out of the bullpen.

    Mostly the AEs would help where they could, however when an new/young AE with no particular commercial art skills, would insist on helping to do some of the drawing-board work, I'd give them a roll of double stick tape and tell them I needed a 10x10 inch web in a basket weave pattern.

    After three minutes they would usually remember something else they had to do.
     
  20. TekGreg

    TekGreg Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Nope! Obviously, you did not see the follow-up video that answers the question!
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2014