The Unwritten Laws Of Engineering Analysis
Review of “The Unwritten Laws of Engineering” by Skakoon and King
I. REFLECTIONS ON YOUR PAST AND HOW THE “UNWRITTEN LAWS” COULD HAVE HELPED YOU
The Unwritten Laws of Engineering by Skakoon and King is probably one of the most useful tools to practicing engineers. It can serve as a general guide of how to behave in almost every aspect of a career. Many of these laws can be linked to the three theories of ethics and to the Biblical world view. They are not, however, all-inclusive. There are still missing laws that should be included.
Personally, these laws would have assisted me in an early stage of my career, I was employed by a company that produced large storage tanks for the oil and gas industry. It was my first engineering internship, …show more content…
The first two I believe relate directly to duty ethics: “Never invade the domain of any other department without the knowledge and consent of the manager in charge” and “In all transactions be careful to deal in everyone who has a right to be in.” Both of these are linked to duty ethics because they both emphasize the importance of not using people or causing any discomfort to anyone just for convenience or perceived efficiency. The laws, “Never misrepresent a subordinate’s performance during performance appraisals” and “Do not criticize a subordinate in from of others, especially his or her own subordinates” relate to Virtue ethics. It is virtuous to present someone’s contributions honestly to ensure that they are given their full compensation. It is also virtuous to only criticize subordinates in private and not publicly humiliate them. These are things that virtuous people do. To represent someone fairly is also a duty ethic as you could be causing someone discomfort and loss to save the company money if you did not represent them …show more content…
In fact, the introduction to the book openly acknowledges this. A law that I believe is missing is to “Always pass on what you have learned before you leave a position.” This means that if you have been in a position for a period of time, you most likely have obtained some advanced knowledge in that area. Information that the person taking your position may not know. This material could be of available resources or advanced techniques. Even something as simple as how to structure a report to a specific client in such a way that it better conveys what they actually want. Numerous little bits of information that you may have, will most likely be very useful to the person taking your place and could mean a significant reduction in the lag time for the new comer to get up to speed. So before leaving a position it is important to at least attempt to compile the not so common and advanced knowledge you have learned in a way that can be easily past to the next person in line. Your department will appreciate the drop in lag time, and you will potentially reap the benefit of not being called as often for your expertise so you can focus on your new position.
The “Unwritten Laws of Engineering” are a very powerful tool to an engineer especially a young new entry level. They would have helped me in my own earlier experiences, but will help guide me from now on. They are also very closely