Volume 03, Issue 3
|Letters to the Editor|
for the taking
-Gary Deabler, St. Louis
-Douglas Dagdag and Nathan Metelak, Issaquah, Wash.
Managers may not be fully accountable and even cite hectic schedules for failures in communicating actions that impact an employee's job status or career opportunities. These issues may never see the light of day by Ethics and Equal Employment Opportunity representatives, or they even may be determined not to be ethical or EEO issues, per se.
However, I feel strongly that each and every manager needs to look inside themselves and ask, "Is that how I would want to be treated if the shoe was on the other foot?" That is where the issues of ethical behavior ultimately reside, and where the consequences of failure to meet that criteria must be dealt with.
-Elliot Heifetz, Renton, Wash.
Being just an assembler of aircraft in the public's eye sends the message that we no longer can compete effectively in the world market. Is this the message we want to put out there? Regardless of what some Wall Street analysts might say about how Boeing is trying to optimize profits for the stockholders, potential stockholders who see what they might perceive as Boeing getting out of the aircraft business will rethink the decision to buy Boeing stock. And that is a sad fact.
The Boeing name has been linked to the manufacture of the Cadillac of the skies for too long to expect the perception to change overnight. I hope upper management will reconsider their game plan on this and not sell off everything but final assembly.
-Bob Feldt, Wichita, Kan.
-Bob Moran, Philadelphia
Unmentioned by these articles so far, despite all of the other press it has gotten, was that Boeing invested significant effort in the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Grand Challenge, teaming up with Carnegie Mellon University for a robotic race across the Mojave Desert in California and Nevada. The vehicle had to be autonomous (not remote-controlled), and had to survive about 120 miles of off-road terrain, with DARPA putting up a $1 million prize to the winner. About 20 vehicles of all sorts of configurations from a variety of teams entered the event.
We made the most distance of any of the other vehicles with our robotic [Humvee]. Boeing sent two engineers-Phillip Koon and myself, both from Huntsville, Ala.-to be with the team full-time, with support from many others within Boeing. During early 2004, we lived in the Mojave Desert, performing non-stop testing and development on our robot racer. It was the experience of a lifetime, and the rush was on to complete the vehicle and finish the software development and testing in time for the race in March.
There was a dramatic turn of events as our robot rolled over in a testing accident and smashed many of its sensors, just days before the race was to begin; but our spirit persevered and we were able to repair the robot in time for the competition. The hard work of everyone on our team (the "Red Team") and the competition of the off-road race really provided an "entrepreneurial environment" and the "Adventure for Boeing engineers" as was touted in previous Frontiers articles about unmanned systems.
-Aaron Mosher, Huntsville, Ala.
Editor's note: For more about the vehicle, please see Page 10 of the Challenge technology and engineering insert in this issue.
-Edward Jeude, St. Louis
It can be said that historically some of our unsuccessful efforts may have been driven by an aloof attitude toward our customer. We should remember that the greatness of our company stems from asking our customers what they want, not giving them what we think they need. Not being comfortable in our markets, our technology, or any plan we might have is a good thing. In our world economy, comfort equals lost market share and poor shareholder value. Being uncomfortable makes us try harder. Winning MMA proves it.
-Lou Rivoli, St. Louis
It is big, it is great and I love The Boeing Company. I am so proud to be part of it as I watch one of our huge planes lift off into the arms of a vast blue sky. I have worked for The Boeing Company for over a quarter of a century. Sure, we employees sometimes complain as we might of a family member who displeases us occasionally, but overall, what a great company to work for.
Boeing employs some of the best people in the world and it is an honor to work with them. I feel so fortunate to be surrounded by such fine, kind and intelligent people. There are so many of the other kind of people in this world but I am surrounded by these gems of the human race. How very lucky I am.
-Karen Salerno, Renton, Wash.
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