The Myth that you should know everything just because you are an Engineer is False! Yeah, you heard me right. In fact, if you assumed you know everything under the sun in your field of endeavor, you are now then doomed to failure. Let’s face it, in the course of our work, you will encounter new process, ideas, solutions, technology and systems you haven't seen before And, this can be very hard to grasp everything if you do not leave yourself a room for improvement, more so of adapting to constant changes brought by new trends in the workplace.
Related to this, let me tell you the anecdote of Two Carpenters in a race against each other to cut the two identical logs:
“ The First Carpenter starts cutting the log using his saw hurriedly as if there is not much time left. He pauses only for a while to catch his breath and continue the back and forth motion of his saw. He does not mind if the saw is still in good shape, he just keep on moving the saw.
The Second Carpenter on the other hand, does the thing differently. In relax and calm manner, he positions the sharp teeth of his saw in the precise perpendicular to the log circumference with consistent, slow back and forth motion. He just paused for a moment to sharpen his saw, oil a bit and continue cutting the log. After quite some time, it begins to notice a huge difference of progress between the two. The First Carpenter now lags behind the Second Carpenter in terms of the cut portion. To think that the Second Carpenter whistles while stopping many times than the First Carpenter seems like cool and amazing to imagine. Worse, the First Carpenter is sweaty and exhausted like hell. Guess who win the race? Believe it or Not, it is the Smart and Cool Second Carpenter! “
What is the lesson behind the story?
You should use razor sharp saw in cutting logs! Literally that is the key. In time, your saw will become blunt or rusted if not given the deserved maintenance. In our life or career as an engineer, you should sharpen your saw. In order to be a world class engineer in your own field, you should be constantly updated of the changes in the industry and the work place without neglecting the fundamentals. Most of the time, the basics is the foundation of the many complex solutions to the engineering problems. We tend to forget the fundamentals because of the fascinating software to automate the job. The Non Engineers will key-in the data, hit the enter key, print the information and submit the report. The Engineers, on the other hand will evaluate the data, key-in the data, hit the enter key, scrutinize the output, check the equation, do manual calculation, if the software is wrong, he will call the programmer to debug the software. Now, that indeed really separates the Man from the boys. Do you agree?
How do you sharpen your saw as an Engineer?
a.) Review fundamentals or back to the basics.
b.) Attend Seminars and Trainings.
c.) Mingle with the same mindset engineers.
d.) Involve yourself to any challenging projects.
e.) Love to read books.
f.) Be a member and participate to any Engineering Organization.
|IIEE 13th Mid Year Convention|
The next time you encounter an Engineer or colleague displays anyone as shown:
- That he does not need the trainings anymore because he knows everything.
- That he sees asking question makes you stupid.
- That he is busy doing the same work for a long time.
- That he sees reading self help books, manuals, procedures as a sign of weakness.
- That he argues it cannot be done rather than it can be done.
- That he does not listen to you talking, instead he is busy thinking for his response.
- That he brags all of his completed projects without anyone asking.
- That he believes his long experience is enough for him to know everything.
- That he has done the same thing and why you should make a change now.
- That he hates the Engineers sooooo much….because he failed to graduate. Really sucks man!..
With this, you know very well you are talking to the First Carpenter of the story. What you can do is, to disappear in a flash immediately like a bubble. Treat him like a person with a transferable disease, waiting for you to become infected with his own ideologies.
You know that we are now in the Information Age. That who has the knowledge has the power. The beauty of today is that information is within our reach for everyone to digest. You just have to open your mind and accept new ideas as you go along in your career. The Engineers of the future are not anymore those who have graduated and registered. They are also the Registered Engineers who are willing to learn more, unlearn and relearn.
Till my next post,