|Welcome to dpchallenge! And, congratulations on entering your first challenge. While I agree that the background / setting is very busy (especially the orange board in the right background, and the florescent light fixture), I really like the parallelism of the two guys\' profiles. You have also chosen a slightly different angle to shoot from (one of the reasons the florescent fixture is in the shot), which adds to the shot.
I think being closer to your subject(s) would have helped: it would have reduced the background clutter and distractions, and it would have helped emphasize the two profiles. You have some decent lighting (maybe a bit too much around the back of his ear), but picking up some nice highlights in his hair.
With portraits, it is crucial that the eyes be in focus. In your shot, the focus is on the ear, and the depth of field shallow enough that the focus is drifting by the time it get to his eye & nose.
Minimal editing is really tough because you can\'t \"fix\" anything - like cropping from just a bit off the back and top of his head, and just before the edge of the white board that overlays the orange one.
Also, don\'t worry about the score. Do photography for your own enjoyment, and to learn and get better at it. Even with your score, keep in mind that 5% voted it 7 or better. Your image connected very well with those. Over 21% thought your entry was better than average.
There are some excellent photographers on this site, and each has a different voting style and rationale. Go look at the blue, red, and yellow ribbon winners in almost any challenge - most of them have some 1, 2, or 3 votes. If you really want to learn, you really do want those voters who won\'t give above a 3 for anything except a creative, excellent picture. It keeps the standard high, and reminds you that you are getting honest votes - not sympathetic ones.
Also on scores - to get above a 5.0, the majority of voters have to be voting 6 or higher. To get above a 6.0, the majority of voters have to be voting 7 or higher. There is the challenge.