Thanks to their education, experience, and general philosophical orientation, many engineers fail to notice critical issues in the workplace that can directly impact their career advancement and day-to-day job satisfaction. This text focuses on career management, and the accompanying importance of human and social interactions in the office. Although framed in the engineering environment, it provides observations on people skills relevant to all occupations. Using an informal, yet professional style, the author takes a mentorship approach by offering suggestions and anecdotes devoid of lecturing. Broken Into Two Distinct Parts
Part I specifically addresses the life and career advancement of the engineer, beginning with school student and advancing to the seasoned professional. Along the way, it explores various stops, diversions, and alternatives, including a view of the corporation as a living organism with its own unique personality that responds to stimuli of the world. Part II discusses engineering projects, product development, schedules, budgets, and related topics. This portion of the book is not about project management, but rather the interaction of engineers and managers working on projects in a corporate environment.
THE ENGINEERING CAREER Education The Early Years Emergence of Talent Math and the Sciences The Weeding Out Process Educational Environment Social Interactions Free Time Getting into a Good College Academic Achievements Graduate School Framing the Corporate Landscape The First Weeks Corporate Organization and Operations Occupational Safety Privacy Corporate Culture Power, Dominance Displays, and the Corporate Hierarchy Loyalty versus Ability Chain of Trust Keyhole Management Democracy Rule, or Die Trying Enlightenment and Reason Irreverence, Malcontents, and Progress On the Job The Role of Experience Understanding the Necessary Level Advocacy Empowerment and Authorization Caesar and the Engineer Managers and Motivational Techniques Managing Up Patterns and Portents Ideas and Designs Prototypes, Demonstrations, and Products Other Options Image Success Alternate Career Paths Project Management Management Technical Consulting Starting Your Own Company So Many More Job Searching and Interviewing Active and Passive Job Searching When Is It Time to Change Jobs? What Kind of Job Do You Want? Marketing Yourself Applying for a Job The Interview Negotiating the Offer PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT Product Development Overview Social Interaction Product Development Blueprint Basics First Idea Money Strategy Requirements Plan the Effort The Project Plan Special Notes on Project Plans A Project Plan Is Not a Design Document The Project Schedule Special Note on Delivery Dates Special Note on Project Schedules Special Note on Manufacturing Testing Special Note on Nurturing the Manufacturing Process Project Plan Sign-Off Begin the Project Assemble the Project Team The Blame Game Personality, Personality, Personality Leadership, Trust, and Talent Communications Properly Equip the Team Design First Manage the Development Requirements Are Your Friend Configuration Management Motivating the Team Vendors and Subcontractors Design Reviews Pyrite Engineering Be in Charge Teflon Management Schedule Delays, Status Reporting, and Visibility The Myth of Managing to a Schedule The Myth of Managing a Vendor Schedule Remediation Schedule Revisions Software Update Formal Bug Tracking and Metrics Formal Testing Manufacturing Epilogue