Daniel Draven

Why do you want to be a board member?

To help set vision and coordination within the GA burn community, and to make sure concerns among members are not only addressed internally, but properly communicated to cultivate and maintain the trust and confidence of our participants.

If elected to the board, what will your priorities be?

Setting expectations - what the board and FAI as a whole are capable of being responsible for; and creating a long term plan to become both solvent and operationally capable of absorbing change such as the Walker County hostility and 2016 Drought Conditions so contingencies don't need to be made on-the-fly.

What is your long-term vision for the future of Flashpoint Artists Initiative?

I think burns should be a capstone of a wider array or art initiatives such as public workshops for metalworking, jewelry-making, and others, as well as supporting art education in the wider community.

What would you most like to contribute as part of the FAI BOD?

I expect that I can help organize a governing philosophy, keep the books in order on financial obligations and contingencies, and promote a healthy correspondence with the community at large.

Please tell us about the experience (professional, burn world, or otherwise) that you can contribute to the FAI BOD.

I currently work as a corporate financial analyst, having earned my MBA in 2016. My experience focuses on forecasting and budgeting, as well, as presenting data to outside stakeholders such as banks and stockholders. In addition, I have trained and worked with Alchemy/Euphoria Rangers, helping to navigate and mediate issues that arise during an event without having to lean on non-existent authority, instead earning buy-in from all parties involved as the only way to carry a solution.

What roles have you served in at Alchemy and/or Euphoria?  In leadership positions at other burns?

Shift Lead- Rangers, Alchemy 2016

Please describe your leadership style and experience (in detail).

I'm very deconstructive, trying to determine key components of both supporters and rivals in order to better determine where common ground can be find. Everyone pushing an argument, even if it odds with one's own POV, is doing so because of specific concerns and priorities that they have that you as a person may not have. Translating that, understanding the differing positions that each of you *starts* from, determines where you may be able to sync up and where you have critical, impassable differences. Once the common ground has been found, negotiation and tradeoffs against the critical issues becomes easier.

Leading is not about pushing a group towards a determined path, its about identifying and removing the things that make them resistant to change, so that the new path becomes the "natural" path.

In the corporate world, I work with differing business units as well as executive management- often they measure performance in entirely different ways. Part of my job is making sure that everyone agrees on a single unit of performance that people can be held accountable to, as well as identify what is actually a controllable item and what they *should not* be held accountable on. When a business unit misses those targets, I need to be able to help the BU articulate the causes of the miss in a way the senior management can understand and accept, as well as develop action plans for how to address this going forward. Sometimes the action plan is "no action" because there's simply nothing that can be reasonably changed, and all parties need to accept that this is simply going to be impacted felt well into the future.

Please describe a time you faced a difficult leadership situation and the steps you used to resolve it (in detail).

Within a previous corporate position, there was an initiative to use Purchase Orders (POs)  for vendor relationships, as this gave the finance department (and thus executive management) greater insight into controllable purchases. This was met with passive resiatance in the form of noncompliance from employees in the field, so I worked with them not to put pressure on them from above to adopt compliance, but to determine why compliance was unpopular. I learned that it interfered with their internal tracking mechanisms and that the setup difficulty was sapping their enthusiasm. I worked with the Sourcing department to adapt the internal reporting to remove the reporting issue, streamlined the setup process, and personally visited with the largest field offices to get buy-in from those managers. Once they started to increase their compliance, smaller offices fell in line because there was peer pressure (rather than top-down pressure), and the main sources of resistance had been removed. Thus they followed the new natural path I had cultivated, instead of a difficult path they felt forced into.

How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Tootsie Pop?  Why?

0. A strong bite can reach the center with no licks required. Licks are an option, not a necessity.

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