Re: How to get the right answer from an engineer
"In fairness to the salesman clan, they are not all total idiots"
Great chieftain of the pudding clan!
No, a few salesmen are psychopaths, but most of the better ones are just total idiots and of course liars.
I was third line support in one job, mostly on-site configuring or fixing our systems. During daylight hours I'd get some technical support or at least a telephone pep talk from the developers.
But there was a bit of a war between the engineering director and the sales director. Both directors insisted I went out to sales events because 1) I could turn on a computer which the sales director wanted and 2) I would correct the salesmen's lies before the developers got blamed for not living up to promises.
It was actually quite an effective sales strategy. Folk would ask me if the kit did what the salesman said, and I'd say, "No, he's exaggerating but it does do this and that's better than our competitors."
I was hauled up before the Sales Director by a bitter man who I'd contradicted/corrected.
"Well, we got the sale and we cn deliver on it so what's the problem?"
"But they don't trust me now!"
"I don't trust you now."
We were given an unlimited drinks budget to schmooze a hotel full of academics. I was pulled up by the Sales Director again for the £324 bar bill. I pointed out the word unlimited, and that I'd barely drunk a quarter of it. 7am, breakfasting with the academics, their talk was all about someone who'd passed out in the lift, and the doors kept shutting on his forehead. I asked why they didn't help him and they said they'd met him and it was funny. Then my salesman walks in with two big bruises on his forehead. I know that is a Simpsons cartoon, this was before that.
I did not share that information even though I had every reason to.
He called me 'tapes', for tape worms because I was skinny. I waited weeks until we and his boss were lifting gear into their car to remark, "I have to compliment you, you don't sweat much for a fat guy."