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At Least Have Some Experience

03/10/2009 2:57 PM

Gave a little background. (and vent alittle)

I was working in the environmental industries designing catalyzers, combustion chambers and such. It was all right, but it didn't trip my trigger.

Now I also hold allot of respect for experience people in a technical field that may not have a degree.

A company (that I was familiar with) had an opening, which did automatic winding equipment, I was excited, but this company looked like it was in trouble. But that's what I wanted.

They hired me and I started working there, The first day of work, Their electrical engineer introduced himself, as Hello my name is Dan D*******, and I'm the electrical engineer, but to let you known I know nothing about electrical engineering.

I was hoping he was just being modest. But hoping didn't do it. Well I was looking over his shoulder, and this guy was screwing up. Everything he touches turned brown. He wired e-stop's wrong, never had enough or the right parts and he would order the wrong parts, Yelling at the vendors for not returning his calls. And then blaming them when the equipment doesn't work.

I had it out with him, when after I corrected one of his orders; he asked if I installed the NC blocks yet, (which he screwed up). I told him for the 4th time, it hasn't arrived yet. And then let him have it. He asked what my problem was, the problem is you, and then I asked him if he was an engineer, his reply was, but I told you I had no experience or knowledge.

I then question him again yes or no, are you an Electrical Engineer, yes or no? His reply was the same, Yes or no I asked, He said yes, And then I told him he should be ashamed of himself. His reply was, I told you I didn't know nothing about EE. My reply was, Is that supposed to make it all right? You depend on the vendor's to design this unit, who do you think is taking responsibility for this? This company. I reminded him.

Then I asked him, what's more important, For producing this unit, or this unit performing. His reply was for the customer to trust him. He just didn't know.

Well in the mean time the operations manager that was in the shop while we were discussing this. Bolted out, he did not want anything to do with this. (my initial impression of him was that he was spineless and gutless) I was right.

This wannabe told me he does not have to do this, that he can make more money bartending, I than asked if he was a good bartender, he said yes, then I told him that's what you should do. He trying to justify his intelligence that he went to school for Nuclear Science, I asked did he graduate, his reply was no. Did you finish the first semester? No answer.

There was allot more to this, but I talked to the owner, the OM, the Human Resource person, as well as the manager and key personnel, about the liabilities with this. What I did not quite realize this wannabe electrical engineer's dad, was the dock master that was able to get a slip for the OM as well as the owner's boat. You know where this is going.

The day after, I discussed this with the people, The owner laid off myself the HR, The OM, some Machinist's and a cadd operator. The reason, it had nothing to do with my complaint.

Oh, the OM offered to stay on for no pay? As far as I'm concerned their getting what they pay for.

Now as I said earlier, I have respect for people with experience that may not have degrees. But man, to have a rodeo clown as an electrical engineer, I have to draw the line on this.

Has anyone else experienced this? I'm sure some of your responses may fall into the discussion I had with this wannabe, which I'll bring up.

I was there less then a month; I must not be a very good people person.

Feeling a whole lot better,

phoenix911

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#1

Re: At least have some experience . . . .

03/10/2009 4:01 PM

It sucks that you tried to help protect the company and wound up out on your @$$.

My story at least ended with me still having my job.

I was working at my job for about 3 years when an OSHA compliance officer job opened. In my previous job I worked with OSHA and the USEPA for 7 years so I figured that I had the best shot. I put in my papers for the job and waited. Several months later I got all of my papers back in the mail, I then saw that the posting for the job said that there were no successful bidders and the bidding was now closed.

This gave management the opportunity to just give the job to whomever they wanted. They gave it to a guy who was slated to retire in a couple of years and who had no idea what he was looking at.

He had no idea how to comprehend an OSHA abatement order, and frequently made mistakes. My direct supervisor showed me an order concerning a hoist. This guy told our people to just remove the hoist and forget about it. I tried to explain that when OSHA gives an order you must "repair" it to OSHA specifications. The guy didn't want to hear anything. We removed the hoist and called OSHA for the re inspection just to have them threaten to fine us for not following their order.

Finally they listened to me. The next thing I know, my boss started asking me to look at all of the abatements. I did for a short while then told him that if I can't get paid for the job then I wouldn't do it. He wasn't happy, but understood.

So here I am, doing my job while the compliance job is, as I understand it, vacant.

A better ending but still an incompitant in a job where someone else, like a trained Gremlin, could do better.( that should get sb's attention).

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#4
In reply to #1

Re: At least have some experience . . . .

03/10/2009 9:57 PM

better ending but still an incompitant in a job where someone else, like a trained Gremlin, could do better.

Well, they can train a monkey to be an astronaut. . . . . but he's still a monkey. .

Kinda a spin off from that saying. . . .a rose by any other name. . . is still a rose.

phoenix911

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#2

Re: At least have some experience . . . .

03/10/2009 4:07 PM

Glad you feel better. What clowns indeed!

Then again, no clown et al. deserves to lose one's job over it. I'm just glad you got a kick out of saying your piece. I hope you'll always remember that fondly.

Personal anecdote: I was once fired for going head-to-head with the factory manager, a salesman with an engineering degree posing as an engineer (well, he was quite a bit more competent than your 'bartender', really), but I made him look like the fool he was and cc'd the whole factory. Despite being fired with extreme prejudice that same day, I was (unofficially) congratulated by the HR manager and other fellow workers...

Thankfully, though it never hurt me (getting out of there turned out to be a good career move), it did tarnish my resume, sometimes making later interviews awkward.

But it builds character.

Eventually, I even learned to keep my mouth (relatively) shut and be diplomatic. All in all, great lessons learned.

I hope this mess turns out well for you too!

All the best!

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#3
In reply to #2

Re: At least have some experience . . . .

03/10/2009 5:58 PM

I tell you, I reconized that company was in trouble. with a 1 to 1 ratio between office and shop floor personnel. But I was hired to do a job, I told my dad what I had done, and said this isn't going to turn out the best for me, but it was the right thing to do.

I figured when I saw how things were going, something had to give or change, because I would have lost my job anyway. And I had to do it.

I exchanged words with Doogie Hauser Electrical Engineer, and I said to him "When the days over and I walked out that door, I still have my integity, while your still a wannabe." (they left me finish out the day)

Funny, when I was in the meeting with the owner, I made predictions, Doogie went in after me, for his side, and as he was in there, We as in the shop floor and myself found out, Doogie, ordered NPN prox. switches. PNP prox. switches were needed. $3,500.00 + later. the correct ones were ordered, and we started pulling the NPN's off.

No I also told the owner, I do not want to be in his shoes right now. Because he's relaying on Doogie's recommendations. I added the thing about Doogie being ignorant is that he just just doesn't know it.

(well, he was quite a bit more competent than your 'bartender', really), but I made him look like the fool he was and cc'd the whole factory. Despite being fired with extreme prejudice that same day, I was (unofficially) congratulated by the HR manager and other fellow workers...

Same happened to me, I should of added, "I refuse to have a battle of wits with an unarmed man." But, I never got personal with him. He thought I was the one being unprofessional. But I do feel better, because if I would have gotten laid off anyways without saying anything and kept quiet, I would have regretted not saying what I said.

I like to add, what I did was my choice alone. I accept the consequences.

Yes, I am at peace. and actually enjoying myself. (as i'm looking for another job)

phoenix911

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#5

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 8:22 AM

Just remember the two rules of plumbing: 1. water always runs downhill 2. fecal material rises to the top.

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#6

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 8:47 AM

Just listened to NPR and a new book coming out:

The company's meltdown is described by William Cohan in a new book, House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street. Cohan talks to Steve Inskeep about the fall of Bear Stearns and one of the figures in the center of it all: then-Chairman Jimmy Cayne.

Jimmy Cayne will happily tell you that despite being paid millions a year, he knows nothing about how Bear Stearns made their money. He was hired for his excellent bridge playing skills. Playing bridge allowed access to million and billion aires across the card table, who made their investment decisions based on his personality.

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#7

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 8:54 AM

After reading your post it's easy to see why they were in trouble. Better to have said your piece and leave, than stay and possibly be subject to a lawsuit because some wannabe causes severe damage from installing faulty equipment.

If someone doesn't have the knowledge but wants to learn that's great. But when they use that as an excuse for why they screw everything up. Then the owner can take the blame (since he knew) and watch his business go Bye-Bye! He should know better.

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#8
In reply to #7

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 9:52 AM

Then the owner can take the blame (since he knew) and watch his business go Bye-Bye! He should know better.

actually the meeting I had with him, I mentioned in a none direct way that now that you know it can be punitive if nothing is done.

The equipment has to perform. Before I left (and before thier laid me off) , I told them to move the welder on the unit or atleast shield it, because doogie, had them put a High freqency welder right in between (2) open I/O panels. I wonder if Doogie knows what EMF is?

These people worked there for 12-16 years, its thier livehhood, and I like them. Hell one of the electricians the first thing he told me my first day was, "I hope you didn't quit a good job to work here." I like him right from the start. . . straight shooter.

Its too bad, alot of good people work there, give you alittle history, A guy that was a a few years younger that me in high school (a real decent guy) worked there since he got out of high school. and bought the company in about 2002, in 2004 he past away? (44 years old, if you have a tightness in you chest, don't ignore it). Three key people there kept it running for his wife till she was able to sell the company (2) years later.

A holdings company bought, later the key people thier said the owner was a trust fund baby.

I satisfied for what I did, but I thought if it worked out, that was the things I enjoy doing.

phoenix911

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#9

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 10:34 AM

As a maintenance manager for quite some time now I can honestly say that I feel your pain.

I am not an engineer nor do I claim to be. I am qualified however, if I choose to get the degree that says so, licensed to do alot of things that both mechanical and electrical engineers do.

I have designed equipment, accessories, and other various sundries in the printing industry for years. I am the first to admit when something is out of my league and call upon experts in the various fields to provide me with the valued information needed to complete a task.

That all being said, I have encountered many fresh faced college boy EE's as well as ME's that couldn't find their collective butts with both hands. I have a great deal of respect for anyone that has a complete education and the degree to go along with it, however I have a very difficult time dealing with someone that fresh out of college thinks they know it all.

I have 27 years in the same industry doing what it take to get the job done and learning the necessary skills to do it. I am open minded to new suggestions and ask when I need help. I will happly take someone under my wing that has more schooling than I do, but serioulsly doubt they know as much. That comment only applys to the fresh faced boys and not the those who have "paid their dues".

Experience is a great teacher and college simply cannot give you that. I applaud your effort to try and make things right where you were and wish you the best of luck in find a new job in the current market.

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#11
In reply to #9

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 11:16 AM

I the same, I worked with engineers from Michigan Tech. And found themn on both side of the spectrum.

I felt I learn my most valuable experiences by working with the shop or field personall. That is why I hold a great deal of respect whether they are degreed or not.

Practical experience is invaluable.

I have been an engineering manager in the past, and have been told a good one. But I have found out at an earlier age, (probally from the farm), that things have to be said or addressed, and not ignored because problems don't go away.

Never was easy, but it can be satisfying.

And thank you,

phoenix911

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#10

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 11:16 AM

So sorry to hear of your misfortune in having to work for an organization with an idiot in it. I know exactly how you feel. Up until I made the switch to environmental engineering 5 years ago, I used to work as a facility officer in the local railway. I was very happy there for many years, that was, until a government scholar and supposed grassroots leader took over as manager of the department. Here's the problem: 1: He's not an engineer, doesn't even have a technical background in fact. 2: He thinks he knows everything despite this, because he's a government scholar from a wealthy elite family with connections to the ruling party.

He's such an idiot that he actually agreed that passengers should be allowed to stand all on the left side of the station escalators, even though unlike in shopping malls, these escalators never reverse direction weekly. This is despite the fact that the previous manager, who has a Master's Degree in Mechanical Engineering, refused to allow this to be done because the heavy uneven loading would result in uneven wear that would lead to premature equipment failure. Predictably, due to the heavy uneven loading, the escalators all started suffering catastrophic failure, one after another. Did he put an end to this stupidity? No, for that would mean admitting he was wrong to do it in the first place. Instead, he forced us to falsify maintenance records to show that since he took over, equipment downtime due to failure had gone down.

I finally quit the company because I couldn't stand all the lies and cover-ups anymore. On my final day of service, I took a thick stack of documents proving the conspiracy to cover up serious problems that endangered public safety to the Director of Facilities, who was a stern but fair and decent man. After the director read my documents, he was so enraged that he stripped the manager of his authority. Unfortunately, the manager was able to deny his role in the conspiracy because he gave all his orders verbally. And so he should too, since he's a former police chief. I just happen to have the documents because I steadfastly refused to obey these criminal orders until I received them in writing. So was he forced to resign to take responsiblity for his failure to uncover, let alone prevent the conspiracy then? HA! None of the conspirators were ever punished. In fact, this corrupted sonofabitch is even being groomed for greater things just because of his scholarship and family background. So much for my country being under the rule of law!!!!

So why didn't I report this to the authorities then? Actually, I did, many times, and my reports were always accompanied by copies of the documents. Unfortunately, in my country, the Manpower Ministry always supports the management against the workers, unless the workers are foreigners, that is. So what did the authorities do then? They simply referred the matter back to the company, who then referred the matter back to the manager himself. Or in other words, the authorities got the perpertrator to investigate his own crimes. And the Manpower Ministry always wonders why the country has double the industrial accident rate of the EU!!!!

Maybe I should just kill the bastard, and then get my lawyer to get the court to investigate his career history. My defence would be that since the authorities don't have the guts to make this bastard pay for his crimes, then someone should, and that if killing him is the only way that his crimes would ever became public knowledge, if I have to pay for it with my life, then so be it. Maybe it would finally make the increasingly complacent authorities here do some soul searching over how their favoring members of the hoi-polloi over commoners can one day result in a tragedy, except that I doubt anyone would find the murder of a guy who was forced to leave the police for suspected bribe-taking but never prosecuted for it because of his family connections a tragedy.

Okay, I've said my piece. Once again, all the best to you in your search for a new job.

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#12
In reply to #10

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 11:25 AM

I was talking with my dad about this when it was going down, He said people like Doogie. (not his real name) goes through life and rarely has to address their screw-ups. Why, because they will Aline themselves with influential people to get in. After which they can just walk away and leave someone else holding their bag of $#!t. And repeat somewhere else.

I seen it. . . .repeatedly. Sometimes they like to call it networking. I hate that word.

And thanks for the support, as much as I hated to do it, I don't regret it even with the times the way they are. I always believe things happen for a reason.

phoenix911

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#13
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Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 9:32 PM

That's the true tragedy of life now, isn't it? It isn't what you know that ultimately matters, it's who you know. And it's always the assholes who know the right people. So much for meritocracy, unless the actual definition of it is the merits of knowing the right people.

It's guys like your "pal" Doogie (although I think a far better name for him would be Mr. Bean, after the infamous moron on British TV) working in finance that caused the global economic meltdown. Maybe we should all sack their homes and strip, tar and feather them and broadcast the images around the world so that it will finally teach them humility. After all, not knowing how to work due to a lack of relevant experience is not wrong in itself, it's when you refuse to learn how to do it right and instead insist on imposing your wrong methods on others that causes problems.

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#14
In reply to #13

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 9:39 PM

LOL

I know Mr. Bean (Roy Atkinson) . . . . " Ah, has anyone seen my watch? "

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#15

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/11/2009 10:11 PM

i'll start of by stating that I am a licensed Electrician and have been for over 15 yrs. I'm also a pretty good mechanic, welder, fabricator, etc. I was taught to diversify my learning experiences at an early age. Over the years I have worked for guys like this many times over the years and that is why I am finally finising my B.A. Org. Mgt. w/ a concentration in Maint. Mgt. I have been passed over too many times for promotions that went to someone w/ a degree but absolutely no common sense.

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#16
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Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/12/2009 12:23 AM

Love your signature; unfortunately it's exactly the sort of attitude that it says that is responsible for guys like us getting in trouble with management all the time. They want to paint rosy pictures all the time, and guys like us dump shit on the rosy paintings, even though we actually dug out the shit from the mess they created in the first place.

Just remember the moral of the old story: you don't need to be a brain to be a boss, just be an asshole. Maybe that'll be a good signature fot someone to use. Then again, maybe I'm being too hard on bosses; after all, being assholes, all they're good for is dumping shit around.

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#17
In reply to #16

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/12/2009 8:57 AM

yourself and noshorts, summed it up well.

Where do you think $#!T comes from.

And Noshorts, when I was managing engineers, I had said to them something very simuliar to your signature.

thnk this may have been it, heck I read the all the trheads again, as well as my posts. What the heck, I did what I always did.

http://cr4.globalspec.com/thread/11801#comment112476

phoenix911

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#18

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/12/2009 10:32 AM

By the way, 5 stars for having the courage to do the right thing. That's far better than what I can say for my local police force, who once decided against pressing criminal charges against a businessman from a wealthy politically-connected family despite the fact that it was proven in court during a lawsuit he lost that he knew that he was importing and selling a China-made slimming drug (Slim 10) that contained 2 banned toxic substances, Fenfluramine and N-Nitroso-Fenfluramine. His actions resulted in the death of a young woman and had caused another one, the plaintiff, to require an emergency liver transplant. And they even had the gall to tell the dead woman's family to sue the millionaire businessman if the family wanted justice for her, since they have no plans whatsoever to prosecute him for his crimes.

Oh, and the local police also declined to press criminal charges against a young man from a wealthy family who killed a young car salesgirl, the only child of an oddjob laborer, through his reckless driving of a sportscar she was selling, until he received death threats from her outraged friends. Makes you wondering why they've actually pressed charges against him, for killing the girl, or to protect him from being beaten to death like he deserved to (because he showed no remorse at killing her and even bragged online about which sportscar he would buy).

At least some of the guys here know and demonstrate the true meaning of moral courage, not like the cowards in my country who call themselves police officers.

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#19
In reply to #18

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

03/12/2009 12:25 PM

That drug was called fen-fen as I recall.

There are people in this country, that can talk a good game. When the time comes to show what they have. they crumble.

As far as the young car salesgirl, Vigilantism, may have its place in a corrupt environment.

thanks

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#20

Re: At Least Have Some Experience

11/30/2009 8:09 AM

This is the problem that I find working with American engineers. One, most of them don't know what they're talking about and two, they dont' know when to STFU.

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