Engineering status

I just read an interesting article about engineers and status, and while some of it felt like, "duh", there was some eye-opening stuff.

The part that felt like "duh" had to do with (my take) attitude in interviews.
They [executives] won’t negotiate against themselves by being “passionate”, either. They want to be seen as supremely competent, but not sacrificial.

But there was some interesting stuff about MBAs in Silicon Valley, and how they've been pushing out technical people.

This part, the author certainly knows more than I do, although I've certainly gotten the impression that big companies (at least) are largely useless, in terms of innovation, because they only look at the loss side of the equation.

That is, they (yes, I'm slightly, though I think only slightly, exaggerating) focus entirely on eliminating costs, rather than looking at expanding revenue.

And that makes everything into a zero-sum game that can't actually be won.

The engineer's approach, on the other hand, is to look at possibilities for entirely new products that expand the market. That makes things into a positive-sum game where everyone can win.

The economy as a whole needs more of the latter, and currently has far too much of the former.

Anyway, part of the article talks about keeping the MBAs out of the loop, and every engineer should read that and think about it.

There's also a lot there about the status of software engineers, and that makes a lot of sense. I must admit that I hadn't given it a lot of thought.

Again, all engineers should read it, and think about it.

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