Pete Phillips

Board Candidate Questions

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I was asked by BCA President John Steed to form a committee to come up with a slate of questions for future BCA Board candidates to address when they run for the Board. As Editor of the Buick Bugle, I receive all of the candidates' write-ups when they run for the BCA Board in the spring of each year. My goal is to keep the write-ups short and to the point, because I think 99% of the Bugle's readers are more interested in seeing articles and photos about old Buicks, rather than a bunch of electioneering and administrative "junk" in their magazine. So, keep in mind that each write-up is usually half a page or less, and we need to keep it limited to that length, especially when we have 6 or 8 or more candidates.  The idea is to get every candidate to cover some of the same issues in their write-ups, so that we, as BCA members, can get some idea what each person would bring to the Board and then compare them when we vote.

 

I think everyone knows what a car looks like when it was designed by a committee, and in order to keep this simple, I'm reaching out to you, the BCA Forum participants, because you are some of the most active people in the club (rather than having a formal committee appointed). I think we can get a good response right here, given the cross section of folks who participate on this forum. So, I'm going to start the discussion with four possible questions that I've come up with. I'd like to see suggestions for other questions, issues, or revisions to what I have written so far, if you think I am off base on any of this. Please be constructive and helpful, but understand there are space limits in the magazine for election write-ups, so 10 or 15 questions to respond to is way too much! 

 

This is not about anyone trying to control or limit who runs for the BCA Board. It is about getting all of the candidates to address some of the same issues in their election write-ups, which are limited in length. We need to know if they have ever attended a national meet, and if they are computer literate, and if they have thought about the issue of how to recruit new members. I'm sure many of you have additional suggestions. Let's hear them.

 

Pete Phillips, BCA #7338

Leonard, Texas

 

BCA Board Candidate Questions (first draft)--these are just my ideas, not cast in stone by any means!

 

1. Please describe any current or previous positions of responsibility you have held with a BCA chapter, region, or other local car club.

2. Have you ever attended and participated in a BCA national meet, and to what extent? Many of the Board’s decisions have to do with national meet policies and procedures.

3. BCA Board discussions and votes mostly occur via e-mail. Are you available on a daily (and sometimes several times daily) basis to check and respond to emails?

4. As we all know, membership in clubs and organizations is declining. Do you have any solutions or new ideas to offer to help rebuild our membership?

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Possibly . . . What is your level of education?  What business experience which would relate to the improved operation of the BCA as an entity?  Wo;; you pledge to respond to inquiries of individual members in a timely manner, hopefully by email?  Then report these inquiries to the full BOD for discussion and possible disposition?  Will You pledge to work for the better good of the BCA organization?  Should the BCA BOD decide to hold a fact-to-face BOD meeting, can you travel?  Have you been a part of any planning or execution of a BCA National-style meet in the past?

 

It would be a "given" that the candidate has owned/loved/cherished Buicks during their life.

 

Hopefully, these could be "Yes", "No", or "short answer" questions.

 

Just some thoughts,

NTX5467

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#4 is very specific. Perhaps a broader what are their goals for the club and how they will attain them if elected. no doubt most or all will touch on membership decline.

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Pete,

I like your first 3.  I particularly agree with the importance of your #1.  I believe I would replace your #4 with Brian's.  I don't believe asking about a candidate's education level is appropriate.

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Do you play well with others. Do you share an interest in all Buicks, all divisions and groups, sufficient enough to be able to work amiably and cooperatively with fellow board members and the general membership. Do you have the social skills to communicate and work with others for betterment of the entire club? Describe a time or experience in your past social or work history where you performed successfully in a team atmosphere.

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I would suggest a slight edit on question number 1 from "BCA chapter, region, or other local car club." to "BCA chapter, division, region, or other car club."

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1 hour ago, 38Buick 80C said:

#4 is very specific. Perhaps a broader what are their goals for the club and how they will attain them if elected. no doubt most or all will touch on membership decline.

Brian,

  You are correct that #4 is a very specific question but if we are in agreement that most or all will reference declining membership why not skip past generalities to hopefully hear some specific solutions? Perhaps that is why Pete already boiled down the question to specifics?

Tom Mooney

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2 hours ago, 1965rivgs said:

 why not skip past generalities to hopefully hear some specific solutions?

 

 

Cause I personally want to hear more from candidates about things besides declining membership, there is more to the club then fixing membership issues which quite frankly I don't actually personally feel is an issue or at least not as big as some make it seem.

 

As a young member and former BCA BOD, I am quite confident the club will survive even at lower total membership numbers.

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3 hours ago, 38Buick 80C said:

 

 

Cause I personally want to hear more from candidates about things besides declining membership, there is more to the club then fixing membership issues which quite frankly I don't actually personally feel is an issue or at least not as big as some make it seem.

 

As a young member and former BCA BOD, I am quite confident the club will survive even at lower total membership numbers.

  My post was predicated on the assumption that "we" were in agreement, or at least most including yourself were in agreement, regarding the importance of declining membership issues...apparently that is not the case, your reply clarifies same,

Tom

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Thanks, everyone, for the good, constructive suggestions. I think this is what was needed, to refine and expand upon what I wrote. This is just as good as having a formal committee go over it.😀

Still listening for more comments and suggestions...

 

Pete

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On ‎10‎/‎29‎/‎2019 at 11:20 AM, JohnD1956 said:

 

+1 on this style question, and it is a very good question indeed!

 

 I respectfully suggest that " yes or no"  questions will prime candidates for how they are expected to act, thus robbing the Club of independent thinkers and innovations.  Additionally, and also respectfully, I think questions that might cause potential candidates to think they had to have attended a National Meet and further,  worked at it, will have the same result.  

While I understand the desire to limit space for this endeavor, I believe that becomes a detriment to the future of the organization.  Where-as Mr. Earls style of question will allow a candidate to sell his/her ability to run the organization. To lock up one of 12 issues each year because of this is a small price to pay.

A suggested question would be : Explain any prior experience you may have that relates to the duties of the four club officer positions elected each year. 

And: Explain any special talents you could bring to the Board of Directors.

 

John

 

It was my understanding that the BOD and some of the candidates that ran for the BOD last time, and ultimately were successful - were running on the premise of changing how BOD members and high ranking appointed positions were filled. 

 

In one of President Oldfield's last monthly columns he openly advocated for removing the annual elections for a committee approach to seating the BOD and key officers.

 

In the future, there will be no elections of the rank and file - is my understanding.  I don't understand why the BOD doesn't change by laws an SOPs eliminating the candidate process before the next elections cycle, as they clearly have a majority to change that status.  It would save the club money, would place BCA club advocates in all of the key positions. It might promote volunteerism since that would be the only path to national club stature.

 

To your point, some folks will volunteer for chapter and regional positions and foresee a "career path" to leadership in the BCA much like actual politicians do.  In this manner, the gene pool will be self-limited since a person aspiring to be a leader in the BCA will have to demonstrate over a period of years the skills that the BOD appreciates in their lower echelon leadership, i.e. chapter and regional directors. 

 

This will preclude those recent newer members who may only own 1-2 Buicks and join the club.  These might be community leaders, and owners of companies that can offer good business administration skills to the club, but because they are not part of the inner circle of trust, it could take them 10 years to build up enough cache and credibility to rise to the top. 

 

Edited by B Jake Moran (see edit history)
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For what it's worth, and this is my opinion only, I'm not in favor of any committee deciding who can or cannot run for the Board, and if that is the way this is headed, I want nothing to do with it. I was asked to come up with some questions so the voters can evaluate if there is some experience, knowledge, interest, and talent in the candidates that they vote for. And that's what I''m trying to do.

Pete Phillips, BCA #7338

Leonard, Texas

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@Pete Phillips  Let me assure you that I do not endorse any committee to select candidates.  I fail to see how my previous posts lead to that conclusion.  But since they did, I will delete them. 

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As a sitting  BOD member, I can assure all that there is no intent to limit who runs for the BOD. The only intent in having Pete do this is to give all BCA members a chance to see where candidates stand . A standard set of questions gives all the opportunity to make an educated vote. Please keep in mind that many BCA members do not have any personal knowledge of any of the candidates. They have to make a decision based on the "bio" they see in the Bugle. It was my feeling in voting to have Pete do this , that  more BCA'ers may vote,  if they had a better knowledge of who they were voting for. Thanks fro dong this Pete and I think your use of the forum to be your "committee" is an excellent idea. 

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