I've been in the news and corporate world long enough to know that by the time a job posting is made public, the folks doing the hiring have a good idea who they want to fill the job, if they haven't already promised the gig.
Still, there's a job posting in Sport Aviation this week that I'll bet has some gears turning among aviation people who make their living by the printed (and sometimes spoken) word. The EAA is looking for a director of publications.
I don't envy the person who gets the job. First of all, you've got the antiquated problem of the dead-tree editions, coupled with the competition from the Web for aviation news and the EAA has to avoid falling into the pit of being an organization that spends 50.5 weeks of the year promoting the other 1.5 (AirVenture. Did I really need to point that out? No? That's my point.)
But the EAA is trying. It's about to unveil EAA 360, it's first significant foray into social networking. Done right, it puts all the RV-related Web sites (for example) out of business and becomes THE go to place for homebuilders. Imagine if they could find the next Tony Bingelis and stick him online to answer questions 24/7?
They've recently brought back the Experimenter, which attempts to cater to that wing of the organization (no pun intended) that still cares about homebuilding. They're blogging the reshaping of the AirVenture grounds. They've got several different magazines and, it seems to me, an aggressive approach to things.
Still, you get the whiff every now and again of an organization that isn't fully on the same page. It often seems as though there are factions at the organization pulling it in a number of different directions. Who would want to step into that?
Just so we understand: I'm not applying for the job and there are more qualified people out there. But is there a better way to make a living than by using your non-aviation expertise to make a living in an industry that uses that expertise for good?
Organizations that are in change are perfect places for people with creative ideas.
Here's hoping the EAA gets the right person -- someone who will challenge the status quo and try things that have never been tried before.