CADDManager on March 17th, 2008

CAD Management can be a lonely job. It can set you apart from others because you are management. You are not one of the end users. You are part of the management team in your firm. This separates you from some of the users.

Some of the tasks actually force you apart from others. You have to enforce the Standards and prevent people from deviating from the norm. This does not engender friends at times.
When I review the job description of the CAD Manager I do not find “making friends” on the list. This does not mean that you purposely go out of your way to insult or deride others. Or stomp around looking for a fight.

What it does mean is that your purpose is to manage the CAD environment, not to make everyone like you. But let me say that managing is such a way that most, if not all, of the users and other managers end up liking you is the way to go.

You do this by making the hard decisions and having critical conversations at the right time. You don’t duck out on tough issues, but you don’t act harshly. You keep your cool and your wits about you. You speak directly when needed and graciously at all times. You are gentle in your corrections but firm in your resolve. You draw the line when needed, but grant waivers to get the job out the door.

Your focus is to refine the processes of CAD for productivity, efficiency and collaboration.

So while you are not here to make friends, making friends along the way is the smartest way to do that.

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3 Responses to “Not here to make friends”

  1. Well written.

    I’ve stepped in as CAD manager for this company about 6 months ago. There standards are relatively well put together, but all over the place.

    getting everyone on the same page is a chore.

    Thanks for the reiteration!

  2. Great points.
    One of the biggest pitfalls I have seen is trying to solve difficult issues via email, resulting in misunderstood intentions much of the time. No matter how great your writing skills may be, “tone” is just not communicated well in the written word when directed at a personal level.

    No one loves conflict, but you will always have better results if you can deal with that person face to face (or by phone if you don’t have that option).

  3. As a manager you should be a good friend for your user. so they not afraid to tell you if something wrong. so the communication will be flow between you and them.

    But yes, if its goes to something related with company decision and drawing standard there is no tolerance for that. But still they are my friend. if they do something wrong, i will tell them what should they do to correcting the mistake. and also warn them before they do mistake.

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