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Re: succession planning

On Dec 12, 2007 4:06 PM, Max Spevack <mspevack redhat com> wrote:
> I posted this on my blog (http://spevack.livejournal.com/39464.html),
> but it was recommended to me that I post it to fedora-advisory-board as
> well.
> The Fedora Project Leader job has a natural lifecycle to it.
> I began my time in this role in February of 2006, about 1 month before
> Fedora Core 5 was released. Now we are about one month after Fedora 8's
> release, and the topic of succession planning is very much on my mind.

Thankyou very much for a couple of things:

1) Staying active on this side of the fence. There is a lot of social
contact needed in both Red Hat and the virtual community... and it can
be hard to stay active in one where you rarely see people face to face
when you have meetings with people you can see and talk to every day.

2) Staying moderately burn-out free. This is a 24/7 job at a company
that has been running non-stop 24/7 for 15 years.. and it burns out a
lot of people. You seem to have stayed moderately burn free.. maybe
crispy on the outside.. but not charcoal.

3) Being patient with people you can't see but only know via email.
Email and IRC is a very brutal environment where we always say things
that 10 minutes later we have forgotten or read later and say 'dear
god I wrote that?' It also can lead to confusion and long term
disagreements over phrasing that the writer thought was peaceful but
ended up starting another Balkanization.

4) Knowing when to quit. This can be the hardest part of a job.. and
it makes it really hard to do 1,2,3. There is always another fire,
another project not making a deadline, another meeting with a VP who
doesnt 'get it' according to someone else but just isnt communicating
in geek-tongue, and all the other tiffs, firefights, angry kittens
that come with releases, engineers, etc etc.

Anyway thanks.. I will shut up now.

> After two years and four releases of Fedora, I would like to be able to
> do some other things related to Fedora and/or Red Hat while allowing
> someone else to assume the "Fedora Project Leader" responsibilities.
> The holidays will get in the way of this process a little bit, but in
> the coming months, it is our goal to identify who can be my successor as
> the Fedora Project Leader. The Fedora Project Leader is a full-time Red
> Hat position, and so we need to go through a full interview process,
> etc.
> None of this is being done ad-hoc or randomly. The Fedora Board is part
> of the process, as is Red Hat's CTO and other managers within the
> engineering organization and human resources.
> It is unusual, to say the least, for an announcement like this to even
> be made in public. Due to Fedora's belief in transparency, the other
> members of the Fedora Board and I believe that a statement like this one
> is the right thing to do, and I wanted to make sure that it was in my
> own words.
> For the moment, there is not much else to say, because it is going to
> take a while for all of this to be sorted out. There will be a
> transition period built in, and nothing is going to be done without
> plenty of advance notice and without the buy-in of both myself and the
> Fedora Board.
> I also want to make it absolutely clear that all of this is completely
> voluntary -- it is my idea, it is initiated by me, and I have brought
> the Fedora Board and other Red Hat VIPs into the discussion because a
> decision like this requires their input.
> It has been an honor and a pleasure to serve as the Fedora Project
> Leader. I am not going anywhere for a while, but I wanted to let the
> community know what is going on, and what to expect in the next few
> months.
> --Max
> _______________________________________________
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> fedora-advisory-board redhat com
> http://www.redhat.com/mailman/listinfo/fedora-advisory-board

Stephen J Smoogen. -- CSIRT/Linux System Administrator
How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed
in a naughty world. = Shakespeare. "The Merchant of Venice"

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