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RE: I Got The' "Eagle Done Flew" Blues!

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Marketing yes, but how about this:

How many engineers on this list work more than 40 hrs a week?  
If we all started working only 40 hrs a week supply would diminish and
demand would soar.  Fees would rise and we'd make the same working 40
hrs as we do working 50 or whatever.

But many engineers can't do that, because of FEAR.  Our societal setup
teaches us to fear everything - screwing up, getting sued, etc.  Some
fears are healthy (they keep buildings from falling down) while others
are counterproductive (Better bid that job low, you might not have any
work otherwise).

We also FEAR appearing "slow" to ourselves, and fellow or competing
engineers, so we tend to not realistically assess jobs when providing
bids.

Keep the bids realistic, and don't kill yourself on overtime because
you're afraid of something.

Have a great weekend (I'll be working since my CPA wife and mother of my
kids who can bill heaps more than me has been working during the week)
:)

Ed Tornberg
Tornberg Consulting, LLC
503-551-4165

-----Original Message-----
From: Arvel L. Williams, P.E. [mailto:awilliams(--nospam--at)gwsquared.com] 
Sent: Friday, March 18, 2005 6:37 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
Subject: RE: I Got The' "Eagle Done Flew" Blues!

At last, someone hit on the real fly in the ointment.

Compare what all of our various engineering organizations spend on
marketing
to their membership (Us) and then take a look at what the AIA does
including
the recent "we design roads" advertisements.  (I have several architects
I
respect.  I wouldn't let them design a sidewalk, let along a major
bridge.

WE DO NOT MARKET OURSELVES!!!

How many have a marketing kit?
Got a press release schedule or even just a form?

What's NSPE, SEAOC, ACEC, ASCE, SEA, and other alphabet soups done to
really
market our services.  Wait, that what the architects have done.

One of the greatest days of my young career was spening a few meals with
Ralph Peck.  At nearly 80 he was doing a project that would have been
the
project of a lifetime for any other engineer.  His thoughts were that we
needed to be engineers.

The law is on our side.  They need us.  Don't sell your stamps and make
sure
anyone that does is severely policed. That is what the state boards are
for.
Not to be considered for sunset, or a registration agency, but someone
to
actually make sure that engineers are engineering and punish those who
don't.  Key word here is punish.

Oppps,

I better get off my soap box.  Got some augers to lean against on the
south
side of town.

Arvel



-----Original Message-----
From: Eli Grassley [mailto:elig(--nospam--at)psm-engineers.com]
Sent: Thursday, March 17, 2005 7:28 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
Subject: RE: I Got Th' "Eagle Done Flew" Blues!


Let me start off by saying that I would like to completely agree with
Bill
on this point.  However, it is difficult for an engineer to see things
the
way the general public does. Bill's story doesn't really fit with our
business model unfortunately.

Fact is, most people don't know really know what a structural engineer
does...but they do know what a doctor, lawyer, architect, auto mechanic
does.  That's hit #1 against us.

Secondly, the average building owner out there would probably gladly buy
a
cheaper "do it yourself" engineering kit if given the choice.  But in
most
cases they are required by LAW to hire an engineer to do work on a
project.
The difference is that YOU CHOOSE to have your teeth checked by your
dentist.

What I'm trying to say is that most building owners would probably
prefer to
just hire a contractor and get the job built (i.e. what the %*#@ does
the SE
add to the job except more costs). When someone else like a building
official tells them they must have an engineer, they get all teary eyed.

That's just the way it is.  Until the day that building owners become
convinced that engineers are adding value to their projects and would
choose
to willingly seek out a good engineer the same way they would want the
best
doctor/lawyer/architect/mechanic working for them...our fees will always
be
questionable in the general publics eyes.

Education + Marketing = Higher Fees

St Patty's Day + Guinness = Wobbly Knees

~~ Eli Grassley


Bill Polhemus wrote:

See, this is an extension of what I was complaining about to begin with.

Can you imagine this guy sending back a partial payment to his attorney,
and complaining "your fees are just outrageous, I'm not paying a penny
more!"

It just will never happen.

Until we as S.E.s stand together in the SAME WAY that other professions
do, and insist on fair value for our work we're going nowhere.

Reminds me of the anecdote about the man who went to the dentist for
some work. Before he went in to see the Doctor, the accounts manager
went over the cost of what they were going to do. He was shocked, and
wandered into the examining room in a daze.

When the Dentist came in, the man had been brooding about the bill for
some time. As the Dentist prepared to go to work, the man took the
opportunity to rail about how ridiculous the cost of the procedure was.
"Good grief, you're only going to be installing a single cotton-pickin'
crown! It's not like major surgery or anything! How much can that stuff
cost? How much time could it possibly take? This is just outrageous!
I'll bet you have a huge home, drive an expensive car and belong to the
country club!" On and on he went.

The Dentist said nothing for awhile, then excused himself. He was gone a
few moments, then returned with a shoe box. Inside were some dental
appliance materials and various dental instruments.

"I'm sorry, sir," the Dentist said, handing the man the box. "I didn't
realize you wanted the do-it-yourself kit! That's only $49.99. Pay at
the front, and good luck with your procedure!"

--
Bill Polhemus, P.E.
Polhemus Engineering Company
http://www.polhemus.cc/


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