The way it was!

7 Oct

It was 1987, I had just gone back to work after a couple of months (something like that!) spending time both in hospital and at home, recovering from a car accident.

It was nice to go back to work, people at work were like family to me, I remember Fred bringing me a Teddy Bear in the hospital (lOl), he was one of the maintenance guys, a heavy-set, middle-aged and kind man, an expert pipe fitter and a bit of do it all kind of guy, he used to work with me to build mockups for robotic simulations that I run to test my designs, using my mini (Matsushita) robot; Tom had gotten the group together and recorded a tape singing for me, hello, welcome back to where you belong, Tom Fosolo was the engineer who thought me how to be a reliable engineer! He was an old-timer, with experience building ships/submarines for US Navy, he used to have me follow him everywhere, up the ladder to check the plastic/resins in silos, deep into 200 gallon tanks,….He got me off my foot right, when I started working at Edison, I was 24 then.

3 years later, there I was back from the hospital, trying to adjust, Arnold Tseng, my coworker had just taken over one of my robotics projects, and had brought in ASEA Robotics for design feasibility studies. I had done a lot of work on the project, but just sat back & said nothing. When the application engineer from ASEA started asking Arnold questions about the project, Arnold turned back (yes, he was sitting right in front of me), and asked if I could answer the questions, knowing that I had spent time on the project. I handed my file to Tony Boden, the application engineer. Later on, in a big meeting, when reviewing the projects, Tony’s turn came up to talk about his progress, he just said that your engineer (me) has already done all the feasibility studies, everything is here in her file.

I was impressed, because he made no effort to get credit for anything. He didn’t know me, and I was not involved with the project anymore, I had left them completely alone, and forgotten that I had anything to do with the project, Tony could have taken credit for all work that I had done, but he did not. After that meeting Tony & Arnold asked me to go out for drinks with them, after work, it was normal for me & my coworkers to go out for drinks and dinner after work, so I said OK.

I learned at my first job, to give myself  a chance to make friends with people whom I work with, and let them decide, if they want to act respectfully & show personal confidence & integrity, or not.

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