With all respect to Jed's following comment, this is one of the most important clues why candidates have trouble in their oral boards:
"I recently had an interview, and I know my answers were great, especially after hearing how another candidate answered them. He made the list, and I did not.. Go figure!"
This is the problem! Most candidates think their answers are great, when they aren't. If their answers were as great as they thought, they would make the list and get a badge. When candidates do poorly in an oral board, they blame other's and add more credentials. Then, they still do poorly because they have done little or nothing to improve their oral board skills. They listen to other candidates and firefighters who make them into clones. Once a person becomes a firefighter, they are instantly the experts on how to get hired.
The following is a true story. You don't know this person:
If we can get the village idiot hired, you can get a badge too! That's right! We had a candidate who was a volunteer taking his third test to be hired as a paid member. When this guy was out of town, the village didn't have an idiot.
He received our program and did not one, but two coaching sessions. We literally held him together with crazy clue. Guess what? He got hired. The next week, he made this posting on a bulletin board, "I will show you how to get a firefighter job." The village idiot had become the expert over night on how to get hired. I couldn't believe what I was reading.
If you don't gain the needed skills to do better in your orals, nothing is going to change to get that badge. If it can work for the village idiot, it will certainly work for you.
"Stop looking in the magnifying glass at other's . . . and start looking in the mirror at your self. That's where the problem is."
Absolutely nothing counts 'til you have the badge. Nothing!