IIE South Central Region eNewsletter

     September 2010                                                                                    Newsletter Editor:  Lew Cox

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Lew Cox
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Marketing, the Grateful Dead and IEs 
By Lew Cox 

As a graduate of an industrial engineering academic program, it is likely you had little training in the marketing function; perhaps an intro course as an elective. It is also likely that you never saw yourself as having a need to be a marketing representative. Yet you are in a position of continually marketing one of the most important products of your parents; i.e., you. On a daily basis, you have to sell and resell yourself, your ideas, your talents and your knowledge to a variety of customers both inside and outside of your organization.

Essentially, you are a brand, with characteristics that are unique to your brand. Although your brand is unique, there are a large number of similar looking brands with similar packaging on the market. Full article

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Of software, IEs' time and the new year 

By Lew Cox

In general, IEs work for organizations, academic and industrial. Due to various circumstances, it is likely they measure the beginning point of their years in a way different from the usual calendar or accounting year. Those who work for any type of industry offering either a tangible or intangible product are likely to consider the beginning of their year as when their usual vacation time is over and their children are back in school. Those who work in academia are likely to have the fire drill of a new year match with the beginning of Fall classes. Thus, one might wish them a happy new year in August/September rather than wishing them a Happy New Year. No matter whether their new year is a little different, the industrial engineer's new year should be a time of renewed attention to what might need to be done differently, much like New Year's resolutions. Full article

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Newton's third law, the law of untended consequences, et al

By Lew Cox

The impetus for this short offering comes from the personal experience of buying a new vehicle, then taking it on its first long trip on the Interstate. Perhaps some readers can identify with it. Have you ever been driving peacefully down the road in your new vehicle  in an Interstate semi-stupor and be suddenly shaken from your peace by a very loud voice of indeterminate origin proclaiming something like "HARK, THERE IS A DIAGNOSTIC REPORT WAITING. PLEASE PRESS ??? TO HEAR IT OR $$$ TO HEAR IT LATER!"? If you haven't read the Owner's Manual (and who does?), such an interruption will jack up your resting pulse rate. Full article

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Kansas City chapter - upcoming event
By Lew Cox

As an experiment last year, the Kansas City Chapter adjusted the format of their Mentor Day. The students spent the first half of the day with their mentor, then spent the second half networking and sharing their experience with other mentors and students, plus attending a reception highlighting the HardCharger Award recipients. 
The success of last year's Mentor Day led to a continuation of the format and the addition of additional universities to this year's Mentor Day festivities. Participants this year will include students from Kansas State University, Missouri University, and Missouri University of Science and Technology. 


Mentor Day will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2010, and the mentoring activity is scheduled for 9 a.m. until 3 p.m.  From the mentoring, the crowd will move to Barley's Brewhaus in Shawnee for the reception that lasts until 5 p.m. At the Mentor Day, students meet other students, professors and IEs from industry. Professors meet with interested IE students and industrial IEs. IEs from industry meet students who may be prospective interns, co-ops, or employees, as well as professors whose research might be useful to them. In truth, each of the three groups provides mentoring to the other two. That sounds like a win-win-win situation all the way around.    

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Marketing, the Grateful Dead, and IEs
Of software, IEs' time, and the new year
Newton's third law, the law of untended consequences, et al
Kansas City chapter - upcoming event
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