organization Archives - The Jose Vilson


In A Complete Act of Randomosity ...

Let me lay it out really quickly. I get asked to join a lot of projects, organizations, and groups of people.  My former self used to join everything, and most of the experiences resulted in positive relationships and fulfilling moments. However, these days, I’m not the plucky socialite I once was. Rough lessons will do that to any man. Here’s the three reasons I probably won’t join your organization:

1. It’s not very innovative or interesting.

if I’ve seen it before, and that movement’s been done already, I’m really likely not to join it. It’s the reason why I don’t do Foursquare, for instance. When I feel like anything or anyone’s function has already been fulfilled, then I tend not to gravitate towards that. In a forward-oriented mentality, regressing or repetition usually serves as a hinderance instead of say, a way to reflect on misgivings.

2. It’s got leadership I don’t feel comfortable with.

I know, I know. There’s plenty of times that an organization’s purpose is much greater than the leadership it has. Even when there are stark disagreements between people, they can band together in a way that lets the purpose shine without having the leadership involve itself too much. And that’s often why I won’t join the organization. Whether it was a misplaced handshake, a negative association, or simply treating a group of people as hooligans to placate (i.e. teachers). The minute you get names wrong or look like you’re trying too hard, you fall out of favor for my attention. It’s no disrespect, but that’s how I am.

3. I don’t have the time to play a pivotal role in it. (this tends to be last for some reason)

Even with my time management skills, I often don’t have the time to play an important role in the organization. In these instances, especially when I thoroughly believe in the traits of the movement, I’ll help promote it. I’m generous with my time in that respect, and support tons of organizations even when I’m not a full-fledged member.

So why would I join? In short: it’s gotta be real. It’s gotta ring true. It’s gotta feel like it’s such a part of me, I don’t even  need to think twice about it.

What would drive you to join a movement?

Jose, who’s in constant search of the next and best …


Short Notes: You Gotta Be Real

by Jose Vilson on January 10, 2010

in Short Notes

The Blue Bandana Look

A few links:

  • Anthony Mullen eats non-educators with only a paragraph and change. A must read for any and everyone. Another great Chris Lehmann forward. [Teacher Magazine]
  • Immigration reform becomes more necessary as incidents like this keep happening. Immigration jails, no matter what you feel about them, need not be torture centers. It’s downright criminal. [The New York Times]
  • A reality show here in the LES? Please no. Stop shooting now. Now. Now now now. [Gothamist]
  • Now this is how you redesign a boarding pass. [PassFail]
  • Kanye completely bites my idea. Again. [Rap Radar]
  • When New Yorkers were told that they’re the most unhappy people in the entire country, New Yorkers didn’t smile. That’s for sure. [New York Mag / Intel]

As of late, I’ve had little to no drama with friends. Some may say that’s only attainable when you have no friends (I promise I do), but others may point to the company one keeps. Thus, as I’ve gotten older, it’s become easier to cut those off who try to outweigh my priorities.

In the same way, the things we do and the groups we associate with should be treated the same way. The organizations I’ve worked with just in the past week, whether in a leadership role or otherwise, align themselves with my core beliefs and reward me with opportunity. It’s not about the money; that’s what a job is for. It’s about the ability to help connect people with a greater purpose in some distinct arenas. When Media Make Change addresses the digital divide (one of the big reasons I graduated as a computer science major) or the Latino Alumni Network of Syracuse University focuses on retention of Latino students there, I’m there. When the Acentos Foundation invited me to be one of the first Acentos Fellows or created this special video correspondent for me, I obliged. Because I don’t just believe in the immediate work I’m involved in, but in all the work done at the organization as a whole.

That’s important.

I say this only because oftentimes, I hear some of my friends complain about the company they keep, but don’t want to offend because they have some sort of connection, whether personal or business. I say quit it. If it’s not an imperative part of your livelihood, let it go. Early. It’s a little deeper than “if it doesn’t make dollars, it doesn’t make sense.” The people we’re associated with, whether friends, loved ones, or otherwise, represent us as much as we represent them.

The best thing anyone can say about anything they’re a part of is raising their hand and voting, “Yay.”

Jose, who’s 2 weeks away from the new …