Expert's Panel

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    What methods are best used to get engineering to accomplish the correct goals?

  1. I assume you are talking about working on new or modified products in accordance with the requirements stated in the Market Requirements Statement. Remember marketing owns the MRS. If you are having problems here, sometimes it is helpful to get someone key in engineering to go along with you to the customer. Make sure, of course, you have someone who wonít say the wrong thing and get you in trouble with the customer. That experience will give them new understanding as you gather and catalogue the market information.
  2. There is always the "War Room" approach. Having meetings regularly with the goals and milestones posted. Find out where engineering is and to what they are actually committed.
  3. Good engineers often have a bad case of "tunnel vision." So rather than work with them directly, depend upon a good engineering manager–a person who has been successful as an engineer and is respected by his or her people. You can work through that person to affect change. If your company doesnít have such a person, figure you are in big trouble.
  4. I want to throw in one more item. There has to be an engineering process that surfaces the project and where it is at frequent intervals. It should be under scrutiny of not just engineering management, but also marketing and general management. That is what makes things happen per commitments. Iíve run many projects over the years and it makes a major difference.
  5. What red flags can we identify that might signal a downturn?