In Your Own Words with B. Michael Aucoin – Transition from engineer to manager with ease

When Artech House authors write their books, we ask them what they want their readers to get out of the project. In this series, we show you what our authors, in their own words, wish to impart upon readers. B. Michael Aucoin, author of From Engineer to Manager: Mastering the Transition, Second Edition, describes what his book is about:

The path of an engineer: manager or specialist?

The majority of engineers become managers and leaders for the majority of their careers. Research shows that most of them resist the transition into management and find its challenges dissatisfying.  Much of this frustration results from lack of preparation and training, particularly in the attitudes and principles that promote success in management and leadership.  Success in the transition from engineer to manager results primarily from learning and practicing a number of “soft” skills that flow from developing the necessary attitudes for management.

Main principles for success in management for an engineer

This book focuses on the attitudes required for success in management and these attitudes are founded upon recognition of the six principles that are most important in the life of a technical manager/leader.  These areas are:

  • Mastering Relationships
  • Seeing the Big Picture
  • Getting Things Done
  • Communicating Effectively
  • Using Assets Wisely, and
  • Taking It to the Next Level

The engineering manager/leader who can internalize these attitudes, master the associated skills and apply the common sense wisdom associated with these principles, can excel at and be satisfied with the transition to management.  He or she can appreciate that management and leadership are intertwined with engineering; the transition promotes the rewarding fruition of an engineering career. Likewise, organizations that provide training to their engineering managers in these areas can expect a dramatic improvement in the transition experience for these individuals. Such an improvement is necessarily reflected in beneficial bottom line results.

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