Do you want to be a professional?

Over the last few days, I’ve been in some interesting discussions, the crux of which revolved around “why would anybody care about doing analysis?”.

It’s an interesting question.   Why does Company A mandate doing analysis for things like signal quality, power design, EMI verification, etc on every design while Company B forgoes analysis completely?  Company B is still getting designs out, they’re still in business, so why should they add anything more to the work load??

I heard an interesting question posed to a group of engineers once “Do you want to be an amateur or a professional?”  How many people wouldn’t raise their hand to say they wanted to be a professional.  This is paradoxical though, because if you are raising your hand saying “I want to be a professional” by default you are admitting that you currently are an amateur.  What!?!?  Did I just raise my hand?? “I didn’t mean to do that!  You tricked me! ” Maybe the reality is that you need a shift in perspective.

Who doesn’t want to be a professional?  Seriously…..who wants to raise their hand and say “I’m ready to give half of what I’ve got, I want to be an amateur!”?  Very few of us (there are some that are happy just floating along but that’s not mainstream engineering mentality).  We want to give it our all because what we design is a reflection of who we are and what we can accomplish.   So….why wouldn’t you want to do a professional job at what you design??

If Company B can get a design out, and it may very well be a good design, but could it have been better?  Could it have been manufactured cheaper?  Could it have been designed faster for a longer time-to-market window for the product?  Could it have been more reliable? Could it be done with fewer components? Could it…..could it….could it?  That’s really where analysis comes into play.

Over the next few blog posts, I want to look at this in a little more detail.  Where’s the value in spending time doing any kind of analysis?  Why should you care??  Hopefully I can give you a little insight into that question over the coming posts.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at https://blogs.sw.siemens.com/electronic-systems-design/2010/03/02/do-you-want-to-be-a-professional/