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CAD Managers – Working on the Core (more and more)

This entry is part 3 of 4 in the series Extraordinary CAD Managers [1]

A couple more ideas about working you Core areas of CAD Management.

5.  Change is to be embraced and managed, not avoided.

Average CAD Managers see change as annoying, a duty and demanded by others.  It appears to be complicated and threatening to some, something to be endured only when a firm is in desperate shape.  They may not even realize that they are dragging their feet and slowing down the firm.  Firms that are laggards get left behind.  It may not happen right away, but it happens.  Average CAD Managers become part of that slowdown or may even cause it.

Extraordinary CAD Managers see change as an inevitable and positive part of CAD. In an ever-changing technology based career, change not only means the tools you use, but also the methods you employ.  Changing tools but keeping old habits will undercut the value of any upgrades you make.  When change happens or is caused to happen by the CAD Manager, they also review their policy and procedures at the same time.

Embracing change means that you plan for it and make it happen.  CAD Managers are change agents and should be looking for ways to move their firms forward.  Small or large moves – it does not matter – they just keep things moving.

6. CAD Technology offers empowerment, and enables design.

Average CAD Managers run CAD like IT.  I have nothing against IT, it is just that CAD should not be run exactly like IT.  When IT provides services, the general bottom line is uptime, uniformity and managed services. While these are not bad, they may be inappropriate for CAD environments.   IT’s job is mostly done when the systems are up, stable and running. If the CAD Manager takes this perspective and does not provide services after the install, then CAD chaos soon arrives.  Users are left to themselves and struggle through troubles on their own.  Uptime and uniformity matter, but flexibility, innovation and training are crucial.

Extraordinary CAD Managers know that their job is to make others more productive and help get the software to do what the designer wants.  They see CAD technology as a way to free designers to be creative and work to get the software to be easier to use. While embracing the best of IT methods and practices, they move beyond to provide project level services to individuals, teams and the entire firm.

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