I’m a Manager of Entropy. Nice to Meet You.

We’re a quarter of the way through 2019, and I’ve identified my personal theme for the year:

I’m a manager of entropy.

I’ll explain.

Occasionally, a customer will learn that I have a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. This usually prompts them to ask me why I chose to be the General Manager for a blasting and powder coating outfit, instead of pursuing a more engineering-specific line of work.

The truth is that I use my degree every single day here at Kaser.

Whether it’s a malfunctioning piece of equipment or a faulty process needing revision, I find myself problem-solving daily, using the skills I developed at UNL.

Call it a pain or call it job security, but for better or for worse, there are a lot of problems to solve.

This is true anywhere, of course. The second law of thermodynamics states that the total entropy (lack of order, unpredictability) of an isolated system can never decrease over time. Entropy will increase constantly unless some sort of stasis is achieved, and even that equilibrium is precarious and unlikely to last.

In my world, this means that the systems we have in place cannot function forever without intervention. No matter how organized or well-thought-out they are, the processes we’ve developed require maintenance – I’m constantly examining, rethinking, and tweaking them.

Otherwise, the entropy of the system will increase uncontrolled.

That’s not a reflection on Kaser or its employees; it’s simply nature. It takes energy to maintain order.

So yes, by trade, I’m the General Manager of Kaser Blasting & Coatings. By education, I’m a mechanical engineer. And day to day, I’m a manager of entropy – a solver of problems, a fixer of equipment, and an administrator of systems. My degree is a powerful tool in that undertaking.

What tools do you rely on to manage entropy?

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