|Letters to the Editor|
As our aerospace business weaves its way through these challenging times, I cannot help but notice that we at Boeing are not taking advantage of a hidden planning capability.
We engineer the most complex aerospace systems in the world, but, curiously, we are not applying that engineering competency to the creation of executable plans. Why is that? In today's business climate, form, fit, and function is now on par with schedule and cost, for what seems to be the very first time.
Why don't we then start "engineering" plans so that we can make them executable in today's and future business climates? Plans should more accurately reflect the complexity of the product and service offerings from Boeing, along with the constraints from schedule and cost.
H. Mike Stowe, Seattle, Wash.
As a Puget Sound engineering employee, I must admit to a certain degree of confusion regarding messages from Boeing senior executives.
I think I understand the need to promote market access by either purchasing things from or placing work in countries that might buy airplanes. Our management also has made it quite clear to us that the senior technical staffs are vital to Boeing's future as a "large-scale technical integrator."
On the other hand, the headlong rush to outsource and off-load engineering work to cheaper locales makes me wonder: Where is the next generation of senior technical staff going to come from?
Most of these people, in addition to being brilliant, got to be experts in their fields by tempering their judgment with decades of experience.
Clearly, some sort of activity is necessary to gain and maintain market access around the world today. Hiring cheaper workers is not a panacea and needs to pass a business-case analysis that factors in the vitality of the senior technical expertise of the company in the year 2016.
John Frey, Everett, Wash.
On July 16, 2002, a fully loaded rear trailer of a gasoline truck-tanker rig overturned and burst into flames on Interstate 90 near Issaquah, Wash. For 1-1/2 hours 125 firefighters sprayed water and foam on the burning rig.
As the fire raged on, two airplane-crash tenders from Boeing were dispatched to assist, and their foam doused the blaze. It was most impressive to watch our firefighters quickly smother the flames; the volume and force of our hoses dwarfed the community fire department equipment. Thanks to our Boeing firefighters for a job well done!
Joan Mueller, Seattle, Wash.
Anyone who has an academic understanding of the magic of international marketing understands the difficulty of becoming a truly international corporation ("Going Global," June, 2002).
Boeing, Coca-Cola and Gillette are among a handful of regularly highlighted success stories. As the United States' biggest exporter, Boeing stands in a unique position to continue its success story with its next commercial venture which in whatever form will improve the profitability of its worldwide airline customers. In the end, that will ensure Boeing's future as an international corporation.
Herbie Weisse, Everett, Wash.
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