Here, read this piece that summarizes why the Mozilla Foundation uses this approach.
With that in mind, and with quite a bit of trepidation, I thought that I would use this space to document my application process. My notes, thoughts, and the finished product. Maybe. We'll see.
- It's a bit gimmicky. EDIT: It's gimmicky.
- Someone else applying for the same position could use this to put themselves in a better position. (Okay, pretty unlikely)
- It's taking quite a bit of time to plan this and carry it out - I may have to apply with this unfinished.
- Am I entirely qualified for the position? My prep-work for the application may show I'm not.
- Focuses my thoughts on what is and isn't important.
- Good practice for what would be a necessary embrace of the work open concept.
- Hopefully it stands out from the other applications, something that is explicitly encouraged on the application form.
- Beyond the gimmickry, there is value in demonstrating a thought process rather than merely handing in a finished product.
I'm not very tech-savvy - for evidence of that, look no further than this poor little website that I've been using for many years. Or to my use of "tech-savvy". If I knew how to whip up a wiki page for this, I would. And I get the sense that every other employee at Mozilla could do that on their coffee break.
Mozilla is an organization of software developers. There is a vocabulary (or likely a set of vocabularies) in the organization that that is foreign to me. And I struggle at times with more than the nomenclature.
Is there the potential in an interview (assuming I get that far) to be confused by some Mozilla or web terminology? Yes.
I am likely overstating this issue - I'm sure there are plenty of people at Mozilla that aren't radical hackers. Or tubular hackers. *Yah, Barney, bitchin'...
Anyway, it all feels a bit like uncharted territory for me, which is still intimidating. If anyone has any ideas for how to work through this, please let me know.
Independent of this application I have been working on my own digital literacy, learning about how to work in WordPress, how to host a website, etc. So, there's that...
Working open in the political world
I wanted to write a bit more about the concept of working open, an idea that both fascinates and unnerves me. I work in a world that values proprietary knowledge. The better you can leverage that knowledge, the better you will fare, be it in fundraising, voter contact, or media relations. Lists are difficult to build and maintain, and are closely guarded secrets.
I'm amazed that the Mozilla 2013 year-end fundraising plan is available online for anyone to read. It's not exactly rocket science, but it's also more than I've seen from any other organization. And Andrea Wood, the lead online fundraiser, plans to make available info about their email fundraising program.
A fascinating approach, and an admirable ethos. I really hope it works for Mozilla.
So that's the background for this. Part 1, I guess. In part 2 I'll explore the actual application.