I totally get that this wording is simply a suggestion to kick start the conversation…
I’m sure some will be familiar with engineering environments where folk are unhappy that marketing or sales are rewarded more than those that make widgets. The model that resembles the manufacturing factory where folk on the shop floor earn less than the office worker. Yup, the plight of the engineer is not new, but doing the same in reverse is unhealthy, let’s bear this in mind.
It’s worth considering that the actual effort a technical person puts into their craft doesn’t really change. However, creative thought processing usually develops with experience and over time, and this naturally increases the value added.
So what is the classification of non-technical?
Let’s consider only for the sake of a crude example, that technical is engineering, and that non-technical are any of; marketing (awareness), sales, compliance, law, finance, business dev, international growth, and education.
The question that comes to mind is, are non-technical giving any less value to the eco system? Well, for a start, many disciplines must gain an in-depth understanding of the technical product, otherwise, how can one document about it, market it, sell it, educate about it, or even defend against threats, so those disciplines can really be classified “technical” – oh and keep mindful of the actual non-engineering but technical duties that each perform. So technicals can now be considered as; engineering, marketing, sales, education. Okay, moving on, how many engineers do business dev, finance, law, or compliance? Okay, so those are also technical. This process goes on and on, rinse and repeat, and the more we learn about each others responsibilities, the more we should gain a true appreciation for why we all exist, performing technical duties that each other may not like, or want to be part of, because, why do law if you love design, right? Though personally, I do enjoy many areas of marketing, I digress
I think from my crude list that “administration” is the only non-technical duty while still earning a good remuneration.
Bottom line, be careful how a role or discipline is classified. Don’t jeopardise growth by not appreciating, backing, and rewarding each other. It would be something special if folk are rewarded such that their only concerns IRL are how to improve their contribution to the eco system for the benefit of all, right?!
7Two1 (aka BEngEE)