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Re: [all candidates] DPL salary

On Thu, Mar 14, 2013 at 08:50:33AM +0100, Stefano Zacchiroli wrote:

> Due to time and travel demands, there are blockers in being DPLs. Most
> of them are work related. Within that category of blockers, some could
> be solved by a salary but many (according to your judgement) could not.
> If we agree on this, it means that we are losing many potential good DPL
> candidates due to those blockers.
> The broader question is than: what can we do to loose those blockers and
> profit more from the abilities that we do have in our community?

To the problems with paying a DPL, I want to add another one: how does a
DPL know they're earning their keep? If I were elected DPL and given a
salary, I'd feel compelled to do stuff, or to care too much, even when
perhaps the best thing to do would be to do nothing and just trust
others to do their job.

We've definitely come to expect too much from a DPL, and we need to
break that up. It cannot be that we only have one person in the project
who holds the big picture, motivates everyone, monitors everything, and
does accounting.

The way out I can see is delegation. Delegation makes you more involved,
gives you responsibilities, holds you up to them. A delegated person can
be expected to have a vision of the future of their field, to know what
is going on, to ask for help when help is needed, to suggest successors
and step down if they become inactive.

A delegator's responsibility is to help maintain a high standard among
delegates, which doesn't only mean to undelegate them if they don't do a
good job, but also to thank them for a job well done, ask for bits from
$TEAM posts, have a chat every once in a while about the state of things
and give feedback from the outside.

A DPL who delegates means more people get involved and responsible.

A DPL who is good at all that also sets a nice example for others to
follow. We need that: doing delegation right is something that is hard
to learn. Count me among the ones who'd eagerly thirst to see a good
delegator at work, and take notes.

So, besides knowing how to delegate, a DPL would mostly need to be
someone who knows who does what in Debian, or knows who to ask in order
to find out. And who can tell when they're about to reach their limit,
or their day has been difficult enough already, and delegate the right
person to take care of that yet another urgent thing that popped up at
leader@debian.org just while they were about to go wear some gloves and
clean their bathroom.

Or, if you reall want to invest money on this, perhaps we could consider
paying someone to do the DPL's housework instead :)



GPG key: 4096R/E7AD5568 2009-05-08 Enrico Zini <enrico@enricozini.org>

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