Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Bid List

The bid list is out, has been out for almost a week. I can't believe it is less than a week, since I know it front ways and backwards, and it is the only topic of conversation in the house. The Bid List is the one thing that all A-100's dream of, it is the list of prospective posts. This list is constantly in flex, yet we treat it like the postings are set in stone. After my orientation I was perfectly fine just rankng those we really didn't want to go to, for example no pets or no kids, as L (low) and leaving the rest. But now that I have had a chance to dream, I have some surprisingly strong feelings about certain postings. Why is it that I fear Mexican cartels more than Al Qaeda?

Spencer and I are going back to our old system of ranking internships. We have set up a spreadsheet with our priorities and each priority is weighted. Our top three priorities include work opportunities for me, travel with our pets, and salary. The next priorities are unofficial and are ranked lower. Those include the kind of schooling/care for the kids, position cone, language, and anything else that we think might be important for family life or career. This system is working well and has brought some interesting posts to the top. Even with this impartial ranking system, it is difficult staying detached and not trying to influence some of the scores.

There are a lot of great postings out there and we have to remember that we will probably have 10 in a career. A surprising small number, but those 10 posts can cover the entire world, from small city to culture center. So maybe we should go with a hardship now and aim for Rome when the kids go to school.


Dakota said...

Just found your blog from the link through Digger at Life After Jerusalem. Thought I'd drop a quick note to say hello and welcome to the Foreign Service (and, by extension, to the world of Foreign Service blogging).

Take care and keep up the good work,
--Dakota (a fellow Foreign Service Blogger, currently in western Afghanistan --

Anonymous said...

This sounds awesome, Cary & Spencer! We're excited for you! Cary, I lost all my emails, so thought I'd post a quick hello on your blog. Great updates. Email me when you get a chance. Can't wait to hear where you're first post will be! Giuliana