How to stay motivated at work

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MikeK
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How to stay motivated at work

Postby MikeK » Tue Feb 23, 2016 11:01 pm

Well TTalk of course...

The past few weeks have been rough. I've been working on a redesign for an advanced engine development program with a certain OEM I cannot name. I spent a few months on the initial designs and concept for my part of the system and submitted to my seniors to present. They showed the stuff to said customer, said customer was interested but they decided they wanted to start with a new architecture. So we had to literally go back to the drawing board and redesign everything to work with something similar, but slightly different. We still hadn't heard if we had the contract to work with them.

My heels were dragging. I had no motivation to go through all the steps and calculations to make the changes that they wanted, but I knew I couldn't cut any corners. It's a high exposure project with lot of things to go wrong. So I proceeded to plug along, albeit at a slow pace to make all these minor changes and make sure they would not impact the overall system negatively and I'd meet the requirement. At this point in time I had been told this whole thing was pretty much in the bag and we were just waiting for purchase orders to come in, etc...

So long story short, I'm about 95% through finalizing my work when I find out today the program is cancelled for some reason that I can only call political BS that should have been figured out months ago before we even started proposing stuff to the customer.

So you see... the moral of the story is, don't work too hard, because what you are doing probably doesn't matter a hill of beans anyway. I could have just as easily gone off skiing for two or three months and the company would have been in the exact same position they are now.

paulk
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Re: How to stay motivated at work

Postby paulk » Mon Feb 29, 2016 10:10 pm

ugghhh, I hear ya, Mike. In October, I gave a customer every tool in the book to efficiently do a face lift on their entire outdoor mall. I gave them details, pictures, options, great price breaks, the works. They came back after so much hand holding, after months of me checking in and guiding, and said "we've gone in another direction."

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Rokjox
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Re: How to stay motivated at work

Postby Rokjox » Thu Mar 03, 2016 12:52 pm

About a third of my work has never been built. I am a civil draftsman. I got used to it.


Here is why, I figgured out.

A LOT of work is done on "spec" or as something to show a proof of concept, to drum up business. It often costs some shump NOTHING to get you to produce a bucketload of very cute drawings, ideas, plans names, all kinds of bullshit. And then the chump is standing there with an entire presentation for his favorite daydream; often very professionally done. He has somebodiy elses ideas, their show (presentation) as a outline, their effort to make his thing real. He's just cleaned up. "made out like a bandit". Cost him nothing, or next to it.

And he still doesn't have the price of a cup of coffee. No money, no backers, no real hope of doing the thing.

But here is a funny thing about plans and presentations. You can take those things to a banker, use them and get a bigass loan for whatever, if its good enough. So con artists are very good at conning people on every end of the con. If they weren't good at being con artists they'd get a better job somewhere. After the guy gets his plans and or does HIS presentation somewhere, he may win, he may fail, but either way he may cut you out entirely anyway. New guys are always better to work with unless various special understandings are worked out, and sometimes not then.


Engineering and construction is big money business with big numbers trading hands suddenly. Its full of Con Artists of every stripe. I am sure systams programming for control circuits on various platforms is too. Never give away your work if you can stop it, do. The Con Artist will starve you to death, then move on. And the best con artists are the ones who will scream if accused of it. Their moral integrity is too high.

And anyway, if they are any good, you never will know you were conned. Thats how you know the quality of their work. You only figure it out later if ever. Damn project had NO chance of ever being built.

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MikeK
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Re: How to stay motivated at work

Postby MikeK » Thu Mar 03, 2016 2:37 pm

ohhh... I'm used to having stuff not go anywhere... but the reason why is where I get a little frustrated.

Why can't this kind of stuff not be figured out prior to engineering wasting a bunch of time (and money) on creating things that someone (who I don't know) knows will never go anywhere?

For example, on my end, if I just made up a bunch of horseshit and promised a customer or partner the moon, knowing I couldn't deliver later on, my head would roll when the time actually came around to deliver.

Someone knew on the customers end this was going nowhere. Someone on our end could have figured that out. Seems like there is a big potential there to close a gap. It was a purchasing vs engineering thing. I see this a lot.

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satsuma
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Re: How to stay motivated at work

Postby satsuma » Thu Mar 10, 2016 12:00 pm

Salespeople get to be heroes by making big sales. Corporations typically forget about money they wasted. When profits aren't good, it's the R&D people that are let go first.

I always found my motivation was in learning new things and understanding things better, even if not appreciated by others.

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MikeK
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Re: How to stay motivated at work

Postby MikeK » Thu Mar 10, 2016 12:15 pm

You got it bud. When things get stagnant or I'm redoing tedious stuff because of management or sales, that's when I'm seriously thinking about leaving. I don't care about doing work that goes no where.

When I'm learning new stuff and doing new things, I love my job. It's less like a job and more like fun... as sick as that sounds.

I know a lot of really smart guys that worked right where I do today (I mean literally at the same company in the same department) that left for those very same reasons. Most taught me what I know now. Most are in academia.


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