I rarely (if haven't) write stuff that focuses on non-technical matters in this site. But what urges me to do so this time is the subject's salient necessity in any environment, whether engineering-oriented or not. After all, a cliche first impression when people hear the word engineer is beer  technical skills. But unbeknownst to many, what engineers really aim to develop in their skill set is  their ability to bring out the best in others. Four to five years inside a classroom is already enough to hone someone's technical expertise. It can be argued that co-work and interdependence is practiced through group-projects and team-building activities, but the people involved are 'filtered' - making the difficulty of interaction and influence waaaay easier. To practice such in the real world where all dynamics come into play is the real challenge.


I hope the reader would forgive me for side-tracking all of a sudden, but the pedestal to the next argument involved needs to be set so... 

It all goes back to my last year in high school, the critical juncture every teen had to face that irreversibly steered their lives toward a particular direction. At the time, I first considered being an astronaut because people usually likened me to an alien (i.e. Mr. Bean). Thus, with high hopes I attempted a  hearty and impassioned letter of application to NASA. I failed to save a copy of that letter, but I knew the words I put there were Interstellar. Unfortunately to this day, there is no reply from them (darn it!). Hence, I crossed out my space-faring dreams from my bucket list.

Due to an inherently faux talent in playing the piano and guitar (note: faux), I also considered entering a conservatory of music. I applied to one of the country's top schools , whose 3-stage admission test and audition I prepared for for months on end. The exam was grueling as a listening and singing test demanded mastery of the notes (and impeccable aural skills). Playing my repertoire, the looks on the judges faces turned from expressionless to heavily contorted. Heart pounding over my debacle, I gave a wink after hitting the last note.

I was put on the waiting list.

Finally, with all options exhausted, I was at my wit's end. High school graduation was imminent and my path was undecided. One day as I thought about these problems, I got electrocuted while mindlessly plugging in a household appliance. 

Eureka!

Household appliances have helped society a lot in man's daily routines. I then asked myself, how can I be like this household appliance, useful to my fellow brethren? Consulting my friends, they recommended me to take engineering. I was then reminded of those cool engineers featured in National Geographic. A rush of excitement swept over me as I imagined myself collaborating with NatGeo staff on those huge projects that have helped man in his endeavors.

Awesome! 

But which field should I take? Should I be one of those engineers who got high on chemicals,  or those who played with big adult Legos all the time? (Sorry, I had an immature mind at the time, so  chemical and mechanical engineers weren't terms I easily got familiar with so don't judge me). Some long walks and Yoga sessions later, I realized Mr. Bean was in fact an electrical engineer.

Hence, my journey in electronics engineering began.


Alright, joking aside, things didn't go exactly as above. My original plan was to take a double degree. Electronics engineering and Music (wait-listed in Piano, but passed in Guitar). Alas, taking both degrees at the same time was no longer allowed. So I preferred electronics engineering.

Why?

No, it's not because Mr. Bean was an electrical engineer. It was because being an engineer meant being someone of value to the essential functions of society. I'm not saying music isn't essential as it alleviates the abstract well-being of an individual, it's just that engineering contributes something more. A tangible product whose omnibus of benefits can be felt physically.

Why electronics?

Because every field or sector of science is somewhat and somehow affected by electronics. Do you know a science that does not deal with electronics? With electricity? With automation? Even sciences as disparate as biology comes in tangent through medical electronics (not to mention bio-electronics).

And the more encompassing the field, the more encompassing the benefits. Right?

There's my reason. With this prime argument - a drive to uplift society - the pivot becomes 'others'-centered, not self-centered. Gaining technical skills and developing unparalleled critical thinking abilities can help further the cause, but aren't the end-goal. The ultimate objective still remains, and cultivating others to work at their best for the same cause becomes just as important as one's own milestones and improvement.

Bringing the pitch to a pragmatic level, how this is achieved depends on culture and environment (as most real-world applications are). In the workplace, I've already reached a senior position. My responsibilities now include thinking of ways to impart my skills and know-how so that those with less experience do not feel like they've hit an impasse. A clear expression of ideas and opinions, a positive attitude, and a convivial spirit are some behaviors I believe can go a long way  in helping others bring out their true potential. Sadly, I have yet to master such habits based on the feedback and comments of my colleagues. Clearly expressing that you are the alpha male of the group apparently doesn't count as positive attitude. Hmm...

No man can in fact word the arguments I've made above better than Mr. Simon Sinek in his video below.