What to do when you don’t have the answer. Hello everyone! Just say No or is it I don't know? How often do you say, "I don't know?" How often do you say, "I forgot to do that?" How often do you say, "Sorry, I didn't do it?" To most engineers, scientists, and technical professionals these are deadly statements. No self-respecting engineer wants to say, "Oh, I forgot to do that". And no self-respecting engineer wants to say, "I … [Read more...] about #64 Just Say No or Is It I Don’t Know?
Inter-Personal People Skills
Intellect versus emotions. Which rules? Hello everyone! Human beings are quite the creatures aren't they… or more accurately… aren't we? That's a loaded question though… isn't it? Here's what I mean. The human being. Part primitive emotional throw-back to a creature without language, without the ability to project into the future, without the ability to build complicated tools through higher-order reasoning. And part advanced … [Read more...] about #62 You Know You Side With Your Feelings!
Are they as important as hard skills? Hello everyone! Here's a question for you; "How important are "soft skills" in your long-term success as an engineer or as an engineering manager?" I guess first I should define "soft skills". My answer is that "soft skills" are all those skills that have to do with everything OTHER than your engineering topics. Soft skills are all those skills that have to do with "being human". They are those … [Read more...] about #60 How Important Are Soft Skills for Engineers?
It seems that bad managers go on and on and on. Hello everyone! Last week I published my May ezine/newsletter. It was focused on a specific management question, namely; "Why is it that bad managers are successful?" In the ezine/newsletter is referred to bad managers as managers who were mediocre and incompetent. Now I know those are relatively harsh words; "mediocre and incompetent". In fact, one of the email responses to my ezine … [Read more...] about #59 Why Do Bad Managers Succeed?
Do all engineers either become managers or get pushed aside? Hello everyone! Over the years, I've been asked by many clients, the following question: "As engineers, what is it that drives us to become either less successful over time in our engineering organizations or pushes us into management as we age? It seems we are doomed to not be able to be successful just doing our engineering. What's going on?" I've been asked this flavor of … [Read more...] about #58 Is It Just Old Age?
The case for “close-in” management. Hello everyone! What would you do if you were managing a direct report who complained much of the time? A direct report who "spewed venom" in conversations with other employees, complaining about the company, or about management, or about work conditions, or about work in general? What would you do if this employee went into the offices or cubicles of colleagues and consumed 30 minutes or more at a time, … [Read more...] about #57 Micromanagement To The Rescue!