“Often the difference between a successful person and a failure is not one has better abilities or ideas, but the courage that one has to bet on one’s ideas, to take a calculated risk – and to act.”
As the provincial parties prepare for the fall election, the process of selecting candidates is in overdrive. The premature electoral boundary changes has caused havoc for many who had previously captured nominations.
If it is hard to compete for a nomination that you had already secured, imagine the emotions associated with running against a member of party caucus for the same job. Ugly, distasteful, uncomfortable - the utter shits.
Just about everyone who desires to be in an elected or selected position will lose out to someone else at some point.
The competition can be fierce but at the end of the night only one person wins the nomination. They can be emotional roller coasters for candidates and supporters.
As a candidate, you might like to think that you have been carefully measured and weighed, that your credentials, experience and passion are what matters most to voters. Certainly your credentials are important but the key that unlocks a win is filling the halls, identifying the vote, getting out the vote and ensuring that more people tick your name on the ballot than the competition.
The rules are the same for every competitor. Each will have strengths, weakness, supporters and detractors. Some will have a better following with older people, others with youth. Some will have social and family networks to pull from, others may have high public profiles. In the end, a candidate has to pull every string. The best organized person always emerges on top.
Your participation in the process shows you want to make a difference, that you are willing to put your time, talent and financial resources to use for your party.
You know going in that the nomination is a competitive contest, there is no prize for second place. Not winning is hard on your ego and your confidence! You put it all on the line. You walked the talk, stepped up and stood out. It burns to lose, but you still have an influential role to play in making things happen and promoting your party.
Learn what you can from your experience. It will give you an edge when you enter your next campaign or selection process.
There is no sense blaming the outcome on others or feeling bad for yourself. Reach out to the winner - you are on the same team, offer your support and get your party elected.
You can still influence party policy just from a different angle than you had hoped.
My hat is off to each and every person who has stepped up to seek a party nomination for any party. It takes guts and conviction.
Thank you for ensuring party supporters have a choice - that is the essence of democracy.