EPISODE 012
Engineers Think Everyone Else Is Just Overhead
This episode is a candid conversation with Erika Jefferson, a Chemical Engineer turned Entrepreneur. There is discussion around some of the challenges and opportunities engineers have in the workplace as well as in entrepreneurship. We also poke fun at how engineers typically think their jobs are the most important. You're in for a good laugh.
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Guest - Erika Jefferson:

And trust me, there are some amazing women doing incredible things. And I think the more of us who know about that, whether it's through corporate or startup, the better. Some incredible, ambitious inventions come out of the minds of women.


Host - Monique Mills:

Welcome to the Unpolished MBA podcast 

On this podcast we have conversations with tech startup founders and entrepreneurs and traditional corporate MBA’s.

Many say that Startups = The Unpolished MBA because those without the formal business education are scrappy and do many things untraditionally to achieve business success.

Anyone who has built a business from an idea can attest to the fact that the experience is another level MBA and there’s nothing quite like it. The candid conversations shared here is helpful to both sides of the fence.  One is not better than the other, just different. Let’s jump in.


Host - Monique Mills:

Hi I’m your host Monique Mills. In my work I get to have great conversations with a lot of smart and interesting people. 

In this episode I share a conversation I had with Erika Jefferson, a Chemical Engineer turned entrepreneur. Somehow she fell into entrepreneurship and has created a thriving business that serves women in science and engineering. Before we get started, I have to forewarn you though. Both Erika and I are engineers by degree and spent the majority of our careers in highly technical engineering roles so we take time to poke fun at the “engineering arrogance.” Maybe some of you can identify with it and we’re sure we are guilty of getting under the skin of those who are non-technical. Listen in as we peel back the layers. 


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

I am an accidental entrepreneur.


Host - Monique Mills:

Accidental entrepreneur?


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

I am an accidental entrepreneur who had no dreams of becoming an entrepreneur. My goal was to retire after many, many years someplace and rely on my pension and 401k to take good care of me and life just took another path. So here I am with this startup and nonprofit thriving, and I'm just trying to hold onto the tail.


Host - Monique Mills:

Love it. That's a very common story. So MBA or no MBA?


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

MBA.


Host - Monique Mills:

Did that MBA help you have the courage to kind of just go off into entrepreneurship because you kind of knew a little bit more about business?


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

I think so. So I got my MBA. I was, I was tricked in getting an MBA. I had, even though I had considered it, I had kind of moved past and it was like, you know, maybe I don't need it. And my boss at the time said, you know, you're doing all these mathematical models and doing all these things, but I know you don't know like the real background behind it. You just really putting data into things. By education, I am a chemical engineer and I spent 20 plus years in oil and gas and other industries working as an engineer early on all the way up to sales and business development and supply chain. So just about everything in a company, I'd probably have touched it, worked with it, or sideways got some involvement with it.


Host – Monique Mills:

So as you can see, Erika fell not only into entrepreneurship but also into getting her MBA. Her manager sponsored her without realizing he would change the trajectory of her life and she would in turn enhance lives for thousands of other women in science and engineering. In the next part, I ask her to explain more about that story. Keep listening to hear how it all started.


Host - Monique Mills:

Your manager was kinda like, Hey, have you thought about this?


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Yes. He was a chemical engineer as well. And he, and what I was doing for him was running these mathematical models to determine whether a deal, a business opportunity, was a go or no go and taking into consideration all the financial information to determine pricing and contract duration and things. And I was, I was putting, you know, someone had a cheat sheet and I was putting this information out. I, you know, I've worked in business. So it wasn't like, I don't know what this is, but I didn't have a full understanding of all the work that I was doing. And he said, you know, finance is the language of business. And so without having a business education, I don't know how, you know, engineers transition into leadership. And he was right, because I don't know how many of us were engineers actually have financial training.


I never took a finance class. As close as I've gotten was engineering economics. I don't even know if that's a real thing. It is a real, like engineering economics, you have to evaluate your projects. But I mean, that is such a specific function. That's not necessarily how the business runs. And so he said, yeah, you should take this class, basically finance for dummies. I think the actual title is called financial management for nonfinancial managers. And I was like, sure. Took the class. It was great. It was at our combined, our joint Alma mater. And they lured you in with great speakers and delicious food for six weeks. I'm like, this is awesome. I could do this.


Where do I sign up? I had convinced the vice president to let me go. And not only let me go but pay for the full ride and, you know, got in. And it was a good program. No, knock on it. But you know, after two weeks there went the gourmet dinners and we were placed with pizza. I was like, wait a minute. What's happening here? This is not what I was promised, but it was a wonderful program.

Surprisingly, I thought there would have been more engineers considering that school is very known for engineering. But there was a good mix of folks from various parts of business and various types of business. And I think it was the exposure. So I can't say what particular course or concept that I learned that caused me to, Oh, sure. I could be an entrepreneur. But honestly having no dreams or desire to become an entrepreneur and not having any finance training. I can't see how I would have had the confidence to step out and do this if I had not gotten my MBA.


Host - Monique Mills:

What else do you think you've gotten from it that you utilize today?


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

I think sometimes as technical folks, we can be very myopic on our area of expertise, right? So we make widgets. So we know everything there is to know about widgets, but we may not know about our competitors. You may not know about the industry. You may not know about the socioeconomic issues that affect people's desire and ability to buy widgets, to use widgets. And so that's what business does, right? So you've got business development, value propositions, and marketing, and promotions, and logistics and all those things that as you move up the ranks and become a leader, obviously you have to be aware of those and understand how those impacts your profitability.

But as a solitary engineer, you wouldn't know all that stuff. You may see those people in the hallway, but you don't actually know what they do. You don't know what impact, what they do has on the business. Right? If you're, if you're on a big project, you may be in a meeting with them. And you're like, why are we still talking about that? I want to talk about making widgets because that's, that's your area, right? That's your lane. So your focus is on what you know and what you do.

And so I think going to business school for engineers. So I think there's two different reasons. An engineer may go to business school. One is to become more well rounded. Certainly if you're interested in going up the leadership track to be able to not necessarily to understand what everybody else does, but see how it ties into the business, right?

Businesses are comprised of various verticals, right? And they in good businesses should be working to working for the good of the company. Right? So have one division that's causing more problems than they're generating solutions. But that sometimes is the case. And I think going to business school as an engineer that I'm not working in those departments, but I get it. I know why they exist. I know why they're critical. I know why I need to work closely with them as a technical person.


Host - Monique Mills:

Yeah. It totally changes your respect of those others.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

It does. It does. And I worked in sales, so I knew the other side of the camp. I knew coming from manufacturing when the salespeople were like, we got to get this out today. And I'm like, the line is down. We can't get it out today. And they're like, no, you gotta get it down. I was like, no, you cannot get it today. So I think that kind of added to that. But I think the second thing, if any engineer and I encourage folks who have the temerity and the idea to consider entrepreneurship, maybe the loose screws at your heads to do this work, is the MBA, Number one, like I said, I think it gives you the confidence. If you haven't had financial education prior to that, it gives you just the respect for business. Right? So like I know that I got to get capital and I know I got to build relationships with suppliers and clients and whatnot.

I think it just opens your eyes because as engineers, I cannot speak to scientists as much as my work in engineering. We tend to think that the world revolves, revolves around what we're doing and what we're doing is the most important.


Host - Monique Mills:

Right (laughing)


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

But I can promise you, it doesn't matter if you cure cancer. If you don't have a laboratory to test and prove that it actually works, you'll never sell it. If you don't have a manufacturing facility to make it and package it, you'll never sell it. If you don't have a sales and marketing team to convince doctors and hospitals that it is going to work, you'll never sell it. So I think as engineers, scientists may not be this way, but as engineers, sometimes we're like, we're the most critical part of this, right? Where everyone else is overhead. Yea, they are overhead. Absolutely correct. And if we ever find a way to automate some of these things, we will be able to get rid of some of the redundancy.


Host - Monique Mills:

Hahaha. Oh my gosh. The arrogance of us, right.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Yes.


Host - Monique Mills:

Right? Like it's so crazy. And the thing is we, in those moments, we don't know any better and we really do believe that.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Yea, we really do.

So what I will say as an engineer, you will be humbled-- engineer or a technical person. You will be humbled trying to be an entrepreneur. It may not happen right away because you're probably like look at what I built. This is so great. But the first time you start working on something to move to the next phase of sales and marketing. And I can do it, I can do the marketing. You know, I'll, I'll write, I'll do it. I'll write the copy. I'll do it. And you show it to somebody. And they're like, this looks like hot garbage. I don't know who did this? Did your dog do this? And you're like, no, I'm right. I'm an engineer so I extrapolated that I know how to do other things just as well. And we do not.


Host - Monique Mills:

Yep. Yep.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

I was doing, early on, most of our marketing. And when I finally said, you know, I don't have the time to do this. I'm gonna turn it over to somebody who does this full time. And then I looked at what she did and what I did. And I was like, Oh, okay.


Host - Monique Mills:

That's the difference, right?


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Yea.


Host - Monique Mills:

So tell people what it is that you do now, as far as your entrepreneurial journey goes.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Sure, sure. So I started accidentally an organization for black women scientists, engineers and technologists called BWISE-black women in science and engineering. And we launched almost six years ago in Houston with a handful of women. And now we have over 1,506 chapters around the country and are thriving.


Host - Monique Mills:

Incredible.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

So, you know, especially in this environment, when folks are, Oh, we don't, we can't find technical talent. We just don't know where to look. And so now we take that excuse away. Like you don't? You don't know where to look? Well I mean, I got 15,000. I don't know how many you need, but if it is less than 15,000 I probably got you. Right?


Host - Monique Mills:

Right. Right.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

So we work with some wonderful corporate partners now who are serious about moving the needle. They realize that their efforts internally have not been enough to get them where they need to be.

The world is becoming more diverse and more global, not less. So it won't be a matter of whether diversity is the right thing to do is like, there are only diverse people left to hire to do this work, especially technical work, right. That's why you see so much offshoring, right? We didn't have enough technical talent over here. So we went to these countries to get people to do this work. So as that happens more and more, you just can't use the same, you know, tricks and tips to get diverse folks as you did for non diverse folks. It just doesn't work. So I figure we are positioned very well. Moving forward in the next five, 10, 15 years, forever, who knows to be able to not just, you know, we don't just meet and talk. We want to expose our members to emerging technologies.

Those of us who got our engineering degrees many years ago, we may not be up on artificial intelligence. We may not be knowledgeable about blockchain and quantum mechanics and all that because we didn't take it in school. We haven't worked with it. So I want to make sure you know, that this demographic is exposed to things that can further enhance their careers, or maybe they decide, you know what, I've got enough knowledge. I'm gonna go out on my own and make money off of this. Which I, you know, I still wholeheartedly support. It's difficult. I don't encourage people to go into it without understanding the challenges of it. You kind of gotta be a little bit crazy.


Host - Monique Mills:

Yep. We were just talking about that this week. You've gotta be a little bit crazy.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

A little. Not too much. A little bit crazy. Like if people said, you know what, you're different. If you've never heard that in your life, it's a good thing.


Host - Monique Mills:

It's a good thing.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Yeah. You probably, you know, they may be prepping you for future opportunities as an entrepreneur because you got to have that. You gotta, when everything says, no, you got to say, I don't care what you say. I'm gonna do it anyway. I believe it's going to work. You need that. You need that. So...


Host - Monique Mills:

One of the things we were talking about a little bit earlier was like, you wanted to, STEM people to know how they can turn their expertise into revenue. Into real revenue. So what do you mean by that?


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Right. I try not to use  the term STEM because I found out that STEM was really created by the education industry. And so, you know, when people say STEM, you have folks who are in marketing. Like I work in STEM and I'm like, okay, in a business that hires STEM people. You are actually not a STEM person yourself. So I said to eliminate that, I just call it out. You know, then you can't argue with me now, are you an engineer? Oh, well, no, I'm not. Okay well there you go.


Host - Monique Mills:

Yea. Haha (laughing)

I know that part may have offended some people who may have fallen into that category of non STEM by degree. Just know that it’s not intended to hurt feelings, but engineers, scientists, those with PhD’s and other very difficult majors have had it hard, and I mean really tough years of schooling and some moments of academic torture from time to time. So it’s hard to share that distinction with others who may not have put in the same blood, sweat, and tears. There’s a respect we have for each other for getting through all the Calc classes, diff EQ, late night labs, and countless all-nighters…and for some of us tears…trying to find the bug in the code or why the design you’ve created doesn’t work as it should.  It’s been plenty of times where we’ve been like “I’m not going to make it”.  So after going through experiences like that, I hope you can have more empathy for both the engineer’s arrogance and ignorance. Keep listening as Erika talks more about how it shows up in the workplace and in entrepreneurship and can cause failure and rejection when building a company.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

There are so many of us. And this is, I think the distinction between diverse folks and non diverse folks. There's so many of us who are doing incredible things as intrapreneurs, even though we may not even know that term or know what that is when joining a company. Oh I came up with this solution to do this and a company is like, great, great. Yeah. We're going to send a memo around telling how great you are. Meanwhile, we're making $5 million a year off your invention and you're not getting any of it. So there's, there's people out there who are really innovating. You know, sometimes it's, you know, a backdoor innovation, right? You solved, maybe it wasn't a sexy problem. Right. But it sure did make things better once you implemented.

And you know, we're not obviously getting any financial benefit from having done that. So I say, stop, you get something. Or maybe you invent, okay, that's one invention. I have another idea to do something. Now stop. Before you do a second, a millisecond of work at your company, write it down. Don't tell anybody yet. It's not time to talk about it yet. And, and think about, you know, is this something not just, this is really cool. Cause engineers, we always make up something cool but it's not...


Host - Monique Mills:

Oh my gosh yes. But every day we coming up with something.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Yeah. But it's not marketable. Nobody wants to buy that. There's no market for that.


Host - Monique Mills:

That's so true hahaha (laughing)


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Nobody's going to buy that. That is a limited problem. That only affects X number of people. Okay. So nobody's going to buy that. But for the people who really are coming up with incredible innovations, there really isn't a way, you know, in theory, you know, the incubator, I guess, incubator prior to the accelerator path would help someone do that. But there really isn't.

And I just had a conversation with some folks that we're looking at working with yesterday. They were like, listen, we don't have time to teach people business. So we get it. Because entrepreneurship and being a senior leader is totally separate. My mentor told me she and her husband decided...She was a CIO and she and her husband decided to open up a hair salon. Don't ask me why to open up a hair salon. She said, first of all, we almost lost every penny that we put into it.

Second of all, you know, she's a CIO. So she's like, who's going to get my coffee. Like that would be you. Who's going to make the copies? That's, that's you too. Who's going to clean up the office every evening? That's definitely you.

So, you know, to go from a high level senior position to an entrepreneur, a startup entrepreneurship, maybe if you get a franchise it's a little different, but a startup entrepreneurship, there's a lot of pre-work that doesn't get counted towards Oh, I was in business. No, you're not in business yet. You're trying to start something. And so I think encouraging folks to think about that. And it's, there's no money in it in the very beginning.


Host - Monique Mills:

Yea, for a while.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

For a long time. So you've gotta be able to sustain your family. You know, that way for who knows, you gotta assume it could be 10 years. You can always say it will be five years.

Oh the average is five years. Engineers, we love averages.


Host - Monique Mills:

Oh we love em'.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

And she said, the average is five years. So this is 4.75. So I know next, whatever that is, I should be coming into some money. Cause it'll be my fifth year. I expect money then.


Host - Monique Mills:

Hahaha That's so accurate. Yes.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

So, you know, just that transition. You know, encouraging folks, like I said, I don't see anything. I've had several conversations with a couple big VCs and they're like, we want to support diverse entrepreneurs but they're just not ready. And truthfully, a lot of them are not ready. They're not, you know, they're not ready for that.


Host - Monique Mills:

It's a different skill set. It's different rules than corporate. It's just different. It's just different to really even opening a franchise. Like if you're going to VCs, they're looking at it completely different. They're operating from a completely different business model than anybody else.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Exactly. And quite frankly, they look for the pretty shiny. So you're going in there and telling them how this cleans the ocean waters. And they're like, Oh, when am I going to my money back?


Host - Monique Mills:

Right. How am I going to make money off of that?


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Right? You you've told them the story about the baby whales and all this. And cried. It's how important it is to the world. And they like, so is payback the first two years, or?


Host - Monique Mills:

What is the breakeven point? Yeah.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

So, what's the market share? Like how? You're like, no, I'm, I'm saving baby whales. And they're like, we don't care about baby whales. You know, encouraging folks to step out, but step out to what? There isn't anything. So that's one of the things that I hope that we can transition to moving forward is to be that bridge, to get people Showtime ready. Right. Even, even for the incubators. Right? So the incubators are not the end all be all, but I think there's still a step missing. Right?

And we're talking about PhDs and nuclear, biological, astrological, physics, very smart people, but they are not primetime ready. They're still not primetime ready. Especially if they have, and like I said, if they don't have the language of business, you don't know finance terms, you don't know VC terms. You don't know that stuff. They're going to be like pass. Thanks.


Host - Monique Mills:

Professionals that come from STEM they're not used to that kind of rejection. No, they can't figure that one out.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Noooo. The interesting thing about engineers though, is that don't stop us. We were like, Oh, well. So instead of a non-engineer...


Host - Monique Mills:

And then we have the money to keep putting into it. Right.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Exactly. Exactly.


Host - Monique Mills:

So we keep going, keep going and it's not going nowhere.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Nowhere, nowhere, nowhere. So what, what another, like an accountant or another person will be like, okay, let me retool. Cause I think maybe that he didn't quite understand the story. So I'm going to. So engineers are like, I know what I did was right. I know what I said was right. I know there's nothing wrong with what I presented. I know that they just didn't see it. They, you know, they're all finance people. They're all finance guys so they don't really have a technical understanding. So I know it's not what I presented them.

And I even tried to counsel some of our members and I was like, listen, it's the rare person that's at a venture capital firm that is an engineer. Most of those folks are finance folks. They're certainly not technical folks by and large maybe accounting, marketing. I don't know.

But you're trying to explain, you know, the theory of relativity, to folks who didn't even take high school chemistry. Right. And they're like, I don't care about any of that. Like you spent 15 minutes telling me about this thing, you know, that you're so proud of, but that is not important at all. And so it was very difficult for us to hear that because we think, look at my creations, almost like a child. Look what I did. Look at the thing, it's amazing. Don't you want to know about all the bells and whistles? And they're like, no. Does it work? When am I going to make money?


Host - Monique Mills:

How am I going to make money? You should've just spent those 15 minutes telling me about that.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Exactly. In fact start there. The story, right? You have to have a...It's a compelling story right now. They're going to listen. Nobody's going to cut you a check without looking, kicking the tires and looking under the hood. Right. But the assumption is you got to even get my attention for, to make me even want to look that far. I don't even want to know anymore if you can't excite me.

Engage me because it's a line of people out the door waiting to present to me and get money. So you gotta be better than the best of them in order to even get a second glance. Right. And don't even factor in the fact that you're a female or an underrepresented minority. So just lots of stuff to learn. And I'm not seeing even the universities, I'm not seeing that connection, not seeing that connection. Like here's something you don't have, but this is what you need. And I think that's why you have this big cliff drop of folks who are like, I'm going to be a startup founder. I'm going to do this. I'm gonna do this. Five years later they're back at their old company.


Host - Monique Mills:

Jumping off into the Grand Canyon. You know.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Exactly. Wait, what happened to...? Oh, well that actually didn't turn out the way that I wanted so I had to go back to work.


Host - Monique Mills:

Yup. Yup. Exactly. Exactly. But when you learn the tools, entrepreneurs know not necessarily MBAs, but people who have failed or have tried it before. It's like, okay, that one didn't work, but now you know how to create something else.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Yeah.


Host - Monique Mills:

Within the right boundaries of what's favorable if you're trying to raise money or penetrate a market. It's just like a lot of people are walking in completely blindfolded, but they don't know it.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Right. They don't know what they don't know. And I liken it to a child that gets a spanking. For some folks who spank their kids. After that spanking and you're like, I may do some other stuff, but I'm not doing that again because that was horrible. So the folks who don't even have to necessarily fail spectacularly, but you're like, Oh no, well I think we should do this. Oh no, we're not doing that. Like, I don't know what we're going to do, but we're definitely not doing that. That does not work. Trust me. I know. I have taken the spanking on that one that. That does not work. We don't want to do that. So, you know, I think it's good to fail. That's part of the iterative process. Oh, that didn't work. Okay. Try something else. Try this again. So, you know, we have to be unafraid to fail unafraid to put it all there.

I'm trying to change the world by doing XYZ. If they don't like it, they may not be the firm for you. They may not be the client for you, but put it out there. I think people are looking for passion. That's the other thing, you know, sometimes as engineers, we can be a little dry. This is our invention. It is good. Please buy it. You know, not like this is great. This is going to do this. Cause that's, that's what I'm seeing. These people who are getting this money. And I always reference back to the folks with Juicero. And I'm like, how did you all give these people $160 million? And not do your due diligence, but I'm sure they had a phenomenal marketing package. It's a slide deck that probably shot arrows in the sky and kind of fancy stuff.


Host - Monique Mills:

And captivating personalities.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Exactly, exactly. Which we are sometimes missing.


Host - Monique Mills:

That's not what an engineer fits into. The stereotypically. So knowing that you need to be like, vivacious, not a jerk. Cause people think, Oh, I need to be a complete jerk. And I'm confident. No, no. You have to have some energy to get other people excited about what you're doing. And we've never been taught that.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

No and it's been just not taught, it's squashed. The nail that sticks up gets hit. So in the meeting when you were a young engineer and you're like, Hey Bob, I saw something today. And I think maybe we can work on that. Um Monique, you are here to keep the line running. And you are all thinking, what are you doing? Um we've got to get this line up. And so I think that squashes. I talk about this frequently, how we were sold a bag of false goods, those of us who got engineering degrees, that we were going to be sending rockets to NASA.

And we were going to be building spaceships and doing all this stuff that most of us are stuck behind the desk. Having meetings all day, looking at spreadsheets, I'm like, wait a minute. Why did I take all those courses to that? I should have just taken a course and word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Been wasting my time on all these calculations. Because I don't use any of that. And you've got me in meetings from eight to four 30. So I think there's an opportunity. And I think that's what entrepreneurship does is listen, you want to build a rocket ship and you have the financial backing and the technical concepts and theoretical design and all that stuff. You can do that as an entrepreneur. You won't be able to do that at your company.

You know, even for the folks who are intrapreneurs, there are limitations on what you can do. It may be abstract. And maybe like, well, Bob did that project last year. And so leadership has a bad taste in their mind and they don't want to do that again. He may not have anything about to do with capabilities or even profitability. It may make a good jillion dollars. And they're like, no, no. Now politically, that's just not going to work.


Host - Monique Mills:

They suck all the creativity out of you. You're fresh out of engineering school, into corporate. You're so excited to do big things. And they really just suck all that energy out of you.


Guest - Erika Jefferson:

Yup. Yeah, they shouldn't do. There's a, there's a meme going around of this poodle and the poodle's hair is all over it's head in the first picture. And then the second picture is got like a denim jacket on and it's all groomed and some aviator sunglasses. And that's how I feel, you know, before graduation. Or no, I say right after graduation that like two month period where, Hey, Oh congratulations, welcome until you're really fully in your job. And you're like, you know, I sent you that email five minutes ago. And I was just wondering like, if you were going to get back to me. When the newness wears off and the reality is there, the reality sets in, you're like, Hey, this is not what I want to do.


Host - Monique Mills:

And that’s it.  In this episode both Erika and I shared some of the stereotypical engineer personality traits and if you’ve working with engineers before or if you are an engineer, I’m sure you’ve experience much of this before.  Erika talked about how companies are making efforts to hire diverse talent now and how there is no shortage, no pipeline issues. They just need to partner and changed tactics to effectively recruit and might I add retain, diverse talent. As we talked about, many times after that first job experience out of college many are doubting if engineering is even for them anymore. If that’s you and you’re a women of color scientist, engineer, or technologist, be sure to reach out to Erika and she along with the hundreds of other BWISE women will reignite your passion for what you do.


The Unpolished MBA conversation continues, and you can be a part of it by going to unpolishedmba.com. Thank you for listening.


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