The Great Unknown: Getting a Grasp on the Business at EWI
By Eric Bates on Friday, November 14th, 2014
Starting a new job comes with lots of unknowns. EWI is a great place to work, but the type of business and the work that is done here is completely different from anything I had done before. Not only does the scope of projects vary greatly (“From microchips to battleships” is phrase I have heard several times to describe the stuff we work on), but how the projects are funded and the way the business is run was foreign to what I was familiar with. And being an engineer, understanding how things work helps keep everything in balance.
Luckily, I didn’t have to look very long to find the information I needed. In fact, the information found me. In an effort to make its employees true partners in the organization, EWI (in conjunction with Capital University) offers a class entitled “Business Boot Camp” to all its Associates. It is a multi-week course that covers the basics of the business including marketing, sales, human resources, finance, project management and so forth. This course helps the students understand how their position interacts with others and also provides an understanding of how outside influences can affect the business.
So even though I am not planning on negotiating with our health insurance provider for better rates or developing an advertising campaign, having a general understanding of how these processes are handled within EWI is a good thing. It provides context and background to information that is presented in our Associate meetings and helps explain organizational changes when they occur.
So even though I don’t yet have all the answers, I definitely have a better grasp of the big picture and how all the pieces work together. And no matter who you interact with here, you can rest assured knowing that they have an understanding of what needs to be done to ensure that your project is a success for both your company and ours.