Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Didn’t Make the Cut

So the slate has been announced, so now I feel like I can talk about not making the cut.  Based on the interview scores, bottom of this page, I clearly blew the interview.  I also want to clarify that I knew I hadn't made the cut when I posted, Reaction to Steve Jones Missing the Cut. I wanted to wait until PASS had made the announcement before commenting on my missing the cut, but I couldn't wait to make comments on Steve's situation.

I received my notification email this morning that the Nominating Committee did not recommend me to the PASS Board for inclusion on the slate of candidates presented to voting members.  Unlike my friend Steve Jones (his reaction), I was not really surprised by the decision.  Not because I don’t think I’m capable, but because the expectations about what makes an “ideal board member”.  I’ve always been a technologist and not a manager so I do lack some of the experience that you’d get in a management position.  Having said that, here’s the relevant part of the letter:
While your history as a volunteer within the organization has been relatively short, you have been in it "all they way."  Your commitment, enthusiasm and efforts are recognized within the organization.
Do not be disheartened, it is not unusual for someone to work through this process several times, before success. Let me re-assure you that you are definitely going down the right path, and seem to be doing all the right things to take increasingly responsible roles within this organization. Continue to volunteer, learn and work within PASS to develop your leadership skills. I look forward to speaking with you next year.
On behalf of the Nominations Committee, we thank you for your service to the organization, truly appreciate your volunteer spirit, and look forward to your continued involvement with the PASS organization over the next year.
At first glance I read the letter as saying you need more experience, but as I thought more about it, I was left wondering why I didn’t get recommended, instead of knowing what I need to do to get recommended next time.  I’m probably right that more experience is what’s needed, but how much is enough?  What areas was I weakest?  That’s what a rejected candidate needs to know.

I think the 5 that made the cut are strong candidates.  Mark Ginnebaugh is the only one I don’t know much about so he’s who I’ll spend most of my time learning about before I vote. 

I want to thank everyone who supported my candidacy and encouraged me to make the attempt.  It has been a great learning experience. 

Will I do it again?  I can’t say, but nothing that happened to me in the process has turned me off from doing it again.


  1. My rejection letters (all 3) from trying to volunteer, not for a board position but a committee, at PMI all said the same thing: you don't have enough work experience (I'm at 25+ years now). But at least on the last rejection letter, the nominating committee requested that I join the nominations committee as they were really impressed with me themselves.

    Go figure.

    I think you'd make a great board member, from what I know about you. So keep on truckin'.

  2. Jack,

    I want you to know that we really appreciate all you do, and encourage you, as the email says, to keep doing what you're doing, keep running for the Board. I think you're one of the people the Board neds.

    Thank you!

  3. Karen and David,

    Thanks for the kind words. I can't say for sure that the NomCom was wrong to not recommend me, but I do think some constructive criticism in the notification would have been helpful.


So what do you think I am?