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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [spntrxi] [ In reply to ]
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Interesting. Thought you might have been the triathlete that works at my company down the street from the University of Delaware (my alma mater).

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [jmcconne] [ In reply to ]
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jmcconne wrote:
A couple of years ago, I went to a seminar on the topic of managing millennials. One point they made has been very helpful for me, and it may be a part of what you're dealing with. This guy could just be a standard know it all jerk, but I figured I'd share.

In previous generations, new hires were willing to put their heads down, work a few years, and were OK with not getting noticed and not making a big impact. They were paying their dues. Eventually they would grow into their career, people would start respecting them, and they may move companies once or twice before they retire. Millenials grew up in a world where their parents were regularly let go due to recession, off-shoring, restructuring, etc. They cannot fathom staying in one company for very long, because they have never seen anyone do it. They need to make an impact quickly, because they won't be around in 3 years. It isn't that they necessarily want to jump from company to company, it is just how they see the world.

Maybe the kid is just trying to show he is useful. His manager should be directing this excitement and drive into something productive.

I am not an engineer so won't comment on that portion of the thread, but depending on the definition, I am on the tail end of being a millennial and can respond to the above. (Born in 85, so just barely in the category)

From the general sense I get from people in this category, it is not that they do not want to be a company man or are unwilling to put in the time to advance at a given company. The issue is there is no incentive to stay at one company because companies today take advantage of long term employees. Look up any thread on the finance subreddits and you will see thousands of replies telling people to job shop every 2-3 years, reason given is that is the only way to advance or to make more money. Most companies will underpay a loyal employee until that employee gets fed up and goes somewhere else, often times while hiring new people at or above the rate of the loyal employee. Gone are the days of being rewarded for being a loyal company man. Better to shop your skills every 2-3 years and take the best offer. Often the old company will come back and try to match it, but by that time it is too late.

Job enjoyment and fulfillment is different for everyone, but feeling like your employer gives a damn goes a long way. At my job I don't make oodles of money, but each year I am given some sort of bump in pay, bonus, perk of some sort. Often times it is rather small, and I could potentially make more elsewhere, but I feel that the employer values me so it is easy to stay and work hard for the company. My wife is 31 and has worked for the same people for 10 years, she is as loyal as they come and works way too hard for those people. She hasn't had a raise in 5 years, got a lousy $15 coffee card for a "Christmas Bonus" and feels incredibly burnt out and undervalued. She makes less than a beginning landscaper but she runs a legal office for two attorneys, one of which almost doubled his income last year, created far more work for her, and gave zero consideration in return. It is quite clear that they will abuse her until she goes elsewhere so that is what she is finally working on. Then they will be royally effed and will be bitching and moaning about how they can't find good help and how no one wants to work hard, because the next person is not going to put up with that BS for long.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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BarryP wrote:
Interesting. Thought you might have been the triathlete that works at my company down the street from the University of Delaware (my alma mater).

your alma mater did good by these 2.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [spntrxi] [ In reply to ]
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That's good to hear! ;)

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [iron_mike] [ In reply to ]
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iron_mike wrote:
I'd also say this (as a side-note from the baby boomers thread):

once upon a time internships and entry-level positions were about training people up ... now they seem more about exploiting free labour and paying in 'experience.'

so when these interns and new staffers come to you without the right skills or mind set, you fire them rather than invest in them.

Reminds me of my internship at a credit union. I was hoping to learn a lot about banking, nope they stuck me in a back room to file loan applications in alphabetical order (can I say I got good at my ABC's) for shipment to the warehouse. My learning came from all of the downtime I had. I read the WSJ over the mandatory lunch hour and I breezing through loan applications learning how massively in debt people are and how sketchy used car dealerships are. Any ounce of interest in learning more, anyone beyond my overwhelmed supervisor didn't want to be bothered.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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BarryP wrote:
So, for any interested, here is the hangup that he has:

He thinks my table structure is inefficient. Here's the thing, if we were building a database, he would be correct. In every other context, including this one, he's completely wrong. I'm going to go out on a limb here and think that maybe part of his schooling was database structure and his lack of real world experience makes it difficult to see that the world does not always revolve around the efficiency of data storage.

Wait.. this doesn't sound like engineering this sounds like computer science/programming ... oh wait they want more cache I forgot so now they call themselves Engineer's.. Yeah just like the Sanitation Engineer that visits my house once a week.

Just Triing
Liking ST more since finding the block user post option.
Triathlete since 9:56:39 AM EST Aug 20, 2006.
GM employee, The views and comments posted are my own and in no way reflect those of GM. - Required legalize from employer.
Be kind English is my 2nd language. My primary language is Dave it's a unique evolution of English.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [iron_mike] [ In reply to ]
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I've experienced both. For us, we generally give them challenging projects. If they do well, they are likely to get jobs.


I also worked at mom and pop shop where the interns just did grunt work for cheap.





"I'd also say this (as a side-note from the baby boomers thread):

once upon a time internships and entry-level positions were about training people up ... now they seem more about exploiting free labour and paying in 'experience.'

so when these interns and new staffers come to you without the right skills or mind set, you fire them rather than invest in them."

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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BarryP wrote:
Possibly. Or at least that could be a factor.

I talked to a millenial at the gym a few years ago who said he knew more and did more work than any of the older guys, and he planned to tell his boss that he should be making $250K a year.

I wonder how that went.
Reminds me of when I was interviewing college grads and one told me his prof said he will graduate knowing more than people who've been in the industry for 15 years. Sadly, the kid believed it. That was a short interview.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [DavHamm] [ In reply to ]
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I just used it as a blanket term.


Anyway, we had a meeting today with his manger. The intern, again, expressed his concern with how big the file was going to get if we do it my way. The manager agreed with me that it would not be a concern.


For the record, the size of my table is 59MB. We 2.5 TB free on our server.


I'm going to guess that he was taught in college "don't let your tables get bigger than they need to be." Now, hopefully, he is learning a real world lesson of "don't be a pain in the ass over MegaBytes."


Storage costs about $25 per TB on a home computer. Lets go really really big and assume that its $100,000 to own and maintain a TB in our server farm. So we would have been arguing over something in the range of a dollar. The 90 minute meeting that I called to clarify this mess that he caused was worth about $1,000.

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [AndysStrongAle] [ In reply to ]
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I'm sorry to hear about your experience. Sadly, it's the norm for interns. Most of my colleagues who hire interns and summer students see them as grunts and people on whom they pass off whatever soul-crushing work is left to do in the office. I don't know why anyone would want to treat another human being that way, regardless of where they stand on the company hierarchy. What does that say about a person who sees another person as 'just a grunt'? Mentoring another employee is a privilege.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [iron_mike] [ In reply to ]
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iron_mike wrote:
i think there's also an element to engineering training that, frankly, breeds misplaced confidence. in canada, at least, the 'iron ring' thing often seems to get outweighed by the 'ertw' thing. in my time on campuses that included engineering schools, eng students were often convinced that their coursework was the hardest, that their field was the most important, that there were virtually no problems worth solving that their training hadn't already equipped them to solve. seems one or two mandatory courses in the humanities or social sciences might help with a sense of perspective. . .

side note: number two in the misplaced academic confidence sweepstakes was usually economics.

In my experience as a TA, freshman physics lab was a rude introduction to the real world for most of the engineering students. They generally came in pretty cocky and got their asses handed to them.

If they had switched to physics the beatdown could've continued for four years or more!

I think the engineer attitude might depend on the school. One of my relatives just picked up an iron ring (through Waterloo), and he is confident, but not cocky. Good kid. He even has a girlfriend, even though Engineeers Rarely Touch Women.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [eb] [ In reply to ]
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I’m a materials engineer in automotive and my colleagues treat what I do like it’s black magic. In reality it’s a ton of reading customer specs and journal papers. The other half of my job is networking with suppliers and OEM materials engineers who know far more about their products than I do. The other half is making sure Purchasing does not muck up every program by sourcing the wrong but cheaper materials...much fun.

Guys like the one described in the OP usually turn up in Sales a few years down the road.

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Fester from Detroit, Mi
Last edited by: Sideways: Apr 3, 19 17:33
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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BarryP wrote:
I just used it as a blanket term.


Anyway, we had a meeting today with his manger. The intern, again, expressed his concern with how big the file was going to get if we do it my way. The manager agreed with me that it would not be a concern.


For the record, the size of my table is 59MB. We 2.5 TB free on our server.


I'm going to guess that he was taught in college "don't let your tables get bigger than they need to be." Now, hopefully, he is learning a real world lesson of "don't be a pain in the ass over MegaBytes."


Storage costs about $25 per TB on a home computer. Lets go really really big and assume that its $100,000 to own and maintain a TB in our server farm. So we would have been arguing over something in the range of a dollar. The 90 minute meeting that I called to clarify this mess that he caused was worth about $1,000.

Heh this made me think of a guy I worked with a couple jobs ago. We both worked on a large-ish dataset but not extreme (~4TB HBase). He eventually left to go work at at Google on their maps team. He wanted to do something but was worried a little, so he asked his boss and cc'd some other folks about potentially using "a few hundred terabytes" of data for the experiment.

He basically got laughed at... because that amount is trivial to Google.

Now sure it's a different world if you work on embedded stuff, but most of the time storage is way cheaper than engineer time.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [BarryP] [ In reply to ]
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BarryP wrote:
I just used it as a blanket term.

See this is why we are so damn arrogant and should be. Everyone secretly wants to be us, so much so they call anything from a garbage collector to a programmer engineer.

You all wish you could be us, Yeah cant.

SUCK IT.

lol

Just Triing
Liking ST more since finding the block user post option.
Triathlete since 9:56:39 AM EST Aug 20, 2006.
GM employee, The views and comments posted are my own and in no way reflect those of GM. - Required legalize from employer.
Be kind English is my 2nd language. My primary language is Dave it's a unique evolution of English.
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [eb] [ In reply to ]
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eb wrote:
He even has a girlfriend, even though Engineeers Rarely Touch Women.

I see what you did there.....
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Re: Engineers and misplaced confidence (observations) [spudone] [ In reply to ]
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"Now sure it's a different world if you work on embedded stuff, but most of the time storage is way cheaper than engineer time. "

We have a limit on our LASR server, which is a very fast storage/memory system that can access data quickly. A few years ago I had to do a sizing analysis and we had to make some cuts to fit everything on the (at the time) 1 TB.

As I went through the analysis, I noticed we had about 30 tables. One table took up 80% of our storage space, another 15%, and the other 28 the remaining 5%.

Guess which tables I spent my time organizing and which ones I didn't bother with. I told him, if we have storage issues, we'll figure out a way to save another couple hundred gigs on those tables and not bother shaving off 20-30MB.


But to your point, yes, he didn't understand, at all, the value of our time. I'm sure there was room to make improvements, but why? "I'm sure we can figure something out." Okay.....how much time will it take to figure something out? Or, we can wrap this up and move on.


My father-in-law ran an IT department with the department of energy. He loves telling this story about how the email servers went down. He went to the server room to see what was taking so long, meanwhile losing how many thousands of dollars every tick of the clock. He walked in there and saw the IT guy looking through some logs. My FIL reached over him and pushed the rest button. "Figure that shit out later!"

-----------------------------Baron Von Speedypants
-----------------------------RunTraining articles here:
http://forum.slowtwitch.com/...runtraining;#1612485
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