A group of oil company managers were given an assignment to measure the height of a flagpole. So they go out to the flagpole with ladders and tape measures, set up at the base of the pole, and in no time at all are falling off the ladders and dropping the tape measures. In other words, the exercise becomes just one big mess.
At this point, a reservoir engineer comes along. Seeing what the managers are trying to do, he walks over, pulls the flagpole out of the ground, lays it flat, measures the pole from end to end, gives the measurement to one of the managers, then walks away.
After the engineer is gone, one manager, a pointy haired little fellow with a bald pate, turns to another and laughs, "Isn't that just like an engineer, we're looking for the height, and he gives us the length."