The Gordon Pask Award

Update:

I’m told that it’s too late to get the Pask sorted out for this year – we’re Agile, but not that Agile! Please keep nominees in mind, though. Many members of the committee are talking and are keen to keep the award in some form, so chances are it will be back next year. Watch this space.


It’s that time of year again that the Pask committee meets at the Agile 20XX conference to vote on the nominations which have been made.

The committee is mostly made up of people who’ve already won the award in previous years. We won because of our ideas, because we’re good at spreading them, because we made a difference, because we were under the radar… but not because of our organizational ability! So please forgive this very late post.

We are still collecting nominations (email pask-nominations AT agilealliance DOT org) and will be voting at some point during the week.

A number of people have suggested that the Pask Award doesn’t matter. I thought I’d share some of the things which have happened to me since winning the award last year, so that you can understand exactly what it is that’s being given away.

The Pask Award

It’s always wonderful to be recognised for your work. The award also comes with quite a hefty bit of money – enough to pay for a couple of international conferences, and then some. There’s no trophy, but you get to tell people that you won the award. Your parents will be dead chuffed. You can stand on stage and recognise all the people and communities who’ve helped you. And that’s just the award itself.

The Side Effects

The number of people following me on Twitter doubled overnight, from 500 to 1000. Then it kept climbing. I am now followed by over 1,600 people. That’s enabled me to spread a lot of other people’s messages, too.

Because people have started to know my name, I’ve started getting more offers of work. I’ve had requests for help from the USA, from all over Europe, from India. (Some of them have even offered to pay me!) I’ve been able to raise my rates a bit, and I’m getting all kinds of interesting opportunities which I didn’t have before.

Then, there’s the conference invites. Lots, and lots, and lots of invites to speak around the world. I’m sorry to those people that I’ve had to turn down – I am simply getting so many invites this year that I can’t do all of them, especially if they’re at the same time as others.

Because of the conference invites, I’m getting to speak more, and spread the ideas from my communities, which leads to more Twitter followers and more exposure and more conference invites… I suspect the escalation from this has started to reach a natural limit, but again, I apologise if I haven’t quite been able to keep up. It really has been a little bit insane.

The Further Side-Effects

Because of the invites, I’ve become a better speaker. This means I can now spread the ideas more effectively. They weren’t all my ideas in the first place – many of them came from communities in London and around the world – so now people recognise that I can share ideas effectively. This means more people are now giving me lots of ideas to share! So I’m learning an enormous amount, too. I feel insanely privileged to have such excellent friends and colleagues.

In short…

My life currently rocks beyond my ability to tell it. I’ve been able to help other people’s lives to rock too. A lot of this is due to the award. Many thanks to those who nominated and voted for me, and to the Agile Alliance for continuing to make a difference.

The Gift

If you would like someone to receive a similar gift to the one that I’ve been given in this last year, enabling them to spread their knowledge and ideas to other communities that they wouldn’t normally reach, please nominate at pask-nominations AT agilealliance DOT org. You can see the kind of things we’ve been nominated for in the past. Mostly we’re looking for people who aren’t particularly famous or well known; who haven’t written books or run keynotes, who sit “below the radar”, and could benefit from more exposure – and who will benefit their communities in turn, passing on the opportunities and making the best use of the fame that comes with it.

Do you know of anyone who’s helped their communities? Who’s driven Agile forward in difficult or unusual circumstances? Who’s created an idea, or a community, or a tool, that’s truly revolutionary?

If so, don’t wait – post that email now.

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4 Responses to The Gordon Pask Award

  1. Liz,

    http://www.agilealliance.org/programs/gordon-pask-award/ says “The Gordon Pask Award Program is not currently active. (As of Calendar-year 2011.)” Has it been resurrected?

    – George

    BTW, http://www.paskaward.org/past-winners/ is not up-to-date.

  2. Short version: since I stepped down as director, the Alliance did not seek new directorship of the program, and as a result, no-one requested funding for the program in 2011. The Alliance has said that it would not approve the program as currently described, and so someone would need to revise it significantly to seek Alliance funding.

    I am willing to commit 10% of the program’s budget for 2011, but I won’t serve on the committee.

  3. YvesHanoulle says:

    Hi J.B.,

    Will you share with us, what is wrong with the current program?

    Yves

  4. Too bad to see that the award program is no longer in place.

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