Dear Huddie

Dear Huddie: Please, Use Your Brains

April 25, 2014

We’re back for installment thirty-two of Dear Huddie! Keep the questions coming!

Funny from the Internet: An Engineering IQ test.

Dear Huddie Please Use Your Brains Engineer Jobs

I’m going to skip the questions, this week, to address something I’ve seen in real life. This is specifically directed at recent grads:  Let’s use our brains, please!

A friend I met, my first year living in Texas, used to say, “Bought you books, sent you to school, and all you did was eat the teacher!” C’mon, newbies, let’s use our brains. For example:

I was out on a job with a co-worker when he received an email from an engineer, a younger fellow just two years out of school. “We have a leak in out Deaerator tank and we need you to come in as soon as you can!”

My co-worker was concerned, but also had dropped everything in the past to drive directly to this particular plant for an “emergency”  to find it was not a critical issue. The picture below was the “leak” that needed to be addressed ASAP. If you look under the red handle there is a little crust from seepage –  this is not a reason to shut a plant down, or call a meeting.

Dear Huddie Please Use Your Brains Engineer Jobs

Please, please use your own brains.

I run into young engineers a couple times a year, and it really seems like the work ethic has suffered. For example, I sent out an automated controller manual to a young engineer in charge of approving an up-coming project. I received an email, about two weeks later, saying he had a “couple” questions. Those “couple” questions were actually 15+ questions, all of which could have been answered by reviewing the manual… Please, kids. Don’t bring laziness to the workforce. Flex those expensive brains!

That is not to say this young man couldn’t ask me to review his findings – that’s just sensible – but don’t ask me to find the answers for you!

Thank you again for listening! That’s it for now. I’ll be back in two weeks – don’t forget to send your questions to