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blw2

Cubmaster Transition Out

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I've been reading lately, some posts by retiring scout masters.  Seems the general consensus is that the old guy should vacate for a period of time, rather than sticking around to "help".  

 

My son is in WEBELOS, and so he'll only be with the pack until February or so.  I have no intention on sticking around after that.

 

I took on Cubmaster reluctantly, after the previous one didn't want to do it any more and nobody else wanted it

I have never felt it was my best position since I'm not the up in front entertainer type of guy.

BUT I have enjoyed it.  I like working with the boys and it's really great trying to come up with fun things to do.  I'd like to think that I have done an ok job.  I feel like I'm starting to get in the groove with it... 

 

But I really don't figure it's in the best interest for the pack for me to only do it half a year....

 

I don't have an ACM, despite a lot of effort.... so nobody is set-up to take it

 

Our CC also wants to step out.

We need a treasurer, a secretary... well really we do not have a functioning committee at all.

 

I have laid this whole thing out to the pack during a pack meeting and followed up with an email for the benefit of those that missed the meeting.  The CC & I are trying again to have a parent meeting, hoping that this time we'll get some folks to show up....


 


I have put a lot of energy into the pack.  I have researched ideas, tried every angle to recruit, attended round tables, participated here, focused energy in making the pack meetings as good as I could make them given the team and funds that I have....

But I feel like I have failed the pack in a big way, by not having an escape plan lined up



 

I seriously want to stick around to help in some way if needed, so I'm a bit stuck on what my place in the mix is or should be.....

I guess I should step out completely unless everyone refuses to take the job

or perhaps I should sign on as committee member so the new guy doesn't feel thrown out to sea like I did.... but hang back

or if everyone refuses, I guess we'll have a half year CM .....

 

What are your thoughts?

 

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1)  You may need to  "tag team" on recruiting a CM. By that I mean have the committee come up with a list of names, and 2 folks go and have a chat.

 

2) START RECRUITING NOW!!!! (emphasis)  It can take some time to make the transition.

 

GOOD LUCK!

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Sorry, but you won't get much support from me on this subject.

 

1) Parents aren't going to take you serious unless you are serious yourself.  Announce your departure and invite inquiries into filling your shoes.  You will help that person transition until xx/xx/xxxx when you leave.  After that the pack is on it's own.  Make sure everyone knows your are really serious about this.

 

2) Sleep easy at night because like little children the adults are all going to sit around and wait for someone else to step up and take over.  They will be totally surprised when this game of commitment chicken doesn't happen.

 

3) After xx/xx/xxxx don't worry about it, it is no longer your problem... well it never was your problem in the first place.  You did your stint, now it's time for someone else to step up.

 

4) This is how I run my boy-led program.  If no one wants to be PL, they are not going to have much fun.  Someone better step up.  Well, eventually someone does and they then get the attention, training, and support.  I'm not going to be their PL and I only support the PL's.  Once they realize I'm serious, they figure it out.  Surprisingly it works on adults just as well.  

 

You have left your legacy, now it's time for the committee to step up and do it's job.  No where in the CM job description does it say he/she is to find their own replacement, but I do think it's mentioned in the committee's duties. 

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It is the committee's job to find someone, but I can see why you have a vested interest in helping to recruit.

 

Stosh, I understand where you are coming from, but based on what blw2 is posting, as well as other posts that he is made, I can tell that he feels a lot of responsibility for the group and doesn't necessarily want to leave the group high and dry.  I am the same way and that is why I stepped back in when our SM had to step down for work reasons.  So it's easy to say as of xx/xx/xxxx I am done, it's hard to actually do this.

 

I am not sure what kind of parent involvement you have blw2, but sometimes it makes it easier for someone to step up if there are a lot of good people around them.  It's good to start well in advance and it is good to have an idea of a few people in mind that you have so you can approach them.  You want someone that's qualified as well as willing to do the job.

 

Good luck with this.

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It is the committee's job to find someone, but I can see why you have a vested interest in helping to recruit.

 

Stosh, I understand where you are coming from, but based on what blw2 is posting, as well as other posts that he is made, I can tell that he feels a lot of responsibility for the group and doesn't necessarily want to leave the group high and dry.  I am the same way and that is why I stepped back in when our SM had to step down for work reasons.  So it's easy to say as of xx/xx/xxxx I am done, it's hard to actually do this.

 

I am not sure what kind of parent involvement you have blw2, but sometimes it makes it easier for someone to step up if there are a lot of good people around them.  It's good to start well in advance and it is good to have an idea of a few people in mind that you have so you can approach them.  You want someone that's qualified as well as willing to do the job.

 

Good luck with this.

 

@@pargolf44067 @@blw2

 

Okay, irregardless of sentimentality, both of you guys stepped up when no one else would.  Why would you think this time around is going to be any different?  Once people get to the panic level, they always seem to come up with a solution.  If you plan on doing something different than this unit's traditional process, it would just make sense to let everyone know the new rules.

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I have personally recruited all my replacements. I also personally recruited all our committee chairs. Pick out someone you think would be good for the job and give them an opportunity to try their hand. Many folks are a little shy for volunteering, but will say yes when asked personally.

 

Barry

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Yep, you and/or the committee need to decide who is the best person for the job and ask them to do it.

 

If they refuse,  go on to candidate two.

 

And the best way to get adults used to helping is to ask NEWLY RECRUITED FAMILIES to help with an activity soon after they join.  Then ask them again.  If they have good experiences,  they will become pack leaders.

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yeah, 

problem one is that we really don't have a committee.  Acouple folks are registered, but they have left the building.  The CC is basically past the place I am with his son long out of the pack and he's ready to go. 

 

I've already marched that road a few times, trying to identify candidate number 1, and so on.... for ASM, and some others....  Got me nowhere except out of some time and energy.

 

@@Stosh

I have long ago come around to exactly what you are saying.  At first I soft pedaled it figuring that when folks see that there's a need, they would fill it.

 

Now I have said, I'm gone with my son's den.  That's my date.

 

and I laid it out that I'm not doing this next year as it makes no sense to do it half a year

 

I have been careful to NOT tell them that I will do it half a year if I have to..... but my motivation would really only be for my son and his den.... although I really don't want to leave the other boys hanging without a pack..... 

 

So my delimma.... the reason for this post.... I'm wrestling with what I should do given the potential scenarios...

Should I stay on the committee to help next year, or should I back away completely and just be dad(?)

or should I just save my breath and keep the job until Crossover(?)

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Crossover is a really clean date to move on. At every pack outing and event between now and then beat the drum a bit and offer to help until crossover. When that day comes move on with your son.

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@@blw2

 

I'm kinda with dcsimmons on this one.  You did your fair share of the heavy lifting, more than anyone else was willing to do and now you're going to feel guilty for not taking on more than your fair share?  There's a ton of other parents out there that don't feel guilty, why should you?

 

Scouting is for your son.  It's time to move on, he is.

 

If the pack is to survive, someone will step up.  If it's destined to fold, there's nothing anyone can do to change that.  With a dysfunctional committee, there's nothing there to really bridge the gap.

 

I was awards chair for my son's pack for 5 years.  When he moved on to Boy Scouts, I just turned in my paperwork to the CC and walked away.  No one was upset, I had paid my dues.

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I feel leader identification and transition is one of the THE MOST fundamental problems facing the scouting movement. I'd suspect if BSA really did the digging they'd find that unit death and decay is tied directly to this issue; a completely solvable problem.

 

We did like many here suggest:

 

1) We identify back up leaders and have them shadow the incumbent.

 

2) We developed a "how to" guide with an annual "role map" which showed the major functions of each position, what was due, where it was submitted and how the process was executed. In techie terms, we created a "run book" for each role; its a book that outlines every step a role must take to complete important tasks.

 

3) The out going person, for the most part, was available for questions and help the 3-6 months after rolling off.

 

4) When recruiting adult leaders was difficult we'd have a get together and politely strong arm the parents. We'd use the "toilet paper" demo where we'd note how much time was left for parents to significantly influence their kids by tearing a length of toilet paper by sections until just a few squares were left. Good visual.

 

5) The BIGGEST issue was finding a good recruiter. Good events and good ideas was key.

 

This has worked well for my old unit. It has shrunk some from the 75+ kids we used to have, but that was largely to demographics in our area. The pendulum is swinging back and more young families are moving in, but a new issue is arising: the apathetic late 20- and 30-something parent. Most CMs I talk to find that their biggest challenge.

 

In the end, though, Packs are something you need to walk away from guilt-free. You did your best! Even the best planning can fail if those who take over fail to execute. BSA can make all the "tool boxes" they want. If you give a tool box to someone without fix-it skills you might as well give a dog a computer, same end result. You've given someone something they don't know how to use to solve a problem they are not equipped to solve. THAT'S where DEs should be spending their time, not meddling in working Boy Scout units.

Edited by Bad Wolf

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If the pack is to survive, someone will step up.  If it's destined to fold, there's nothing anyone can do to change that.  With a dysfunctional committee, there's nothing there to really bridge the gap.

I suspect you mean that by "there's nothing anyone can do" you mean that the role of solving this issue falls to the DE and the UC. They are the ones charged with monitoring and fixing broken units. Looking at the membership decline over the last 15 years this is where I, as a businessman, would concentrate my efforts.

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I suspect you mean that by "there's nothing anyone can do" you mean that the role of solving this issue falls to the DE and the UC. They are the ones charged with monitoring and fixing broken units. Looking at the membership decline over the last 15 years this is where I, as a businessman, would concentrate my efforts.

 

You are correct but my statement should have been more clear.  There is nothing anyone in your position can do..."  I was pointing out that if one was going to feel guilty about something at least have it about something they have the power to fix.  In this case, feeling guilty about someone else's problem in not a beneficial reaction.  Like you said, the CM did his best,  Cub Scouting expects nothing less.  He just needs to walk away and enjoy his years with his son in Boy Scouting if he so chooses.

 

It might have been a wee bit more beneficial that when the committee heard that the CM and CC were leaving they would have contacted the DE and UC immediately and got the ball rolling on replacements.  Ignoring problems very seldom solve them. 

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.... THAT'S where DEs should be spending their time, not meddling in working Boy Scout units.

 I have often thought that is a big problem in scouting.....  DE's and such not really focusing energy where it seems they are needed.

 

We have these "pros", who's full time job is scouting. Then we have the volunteer staff doing ALL of the heavy lifting, who have other jobs taking up their full time 40, 50, 60+ hours a week jobs doing something completely different, so they often don't have the time or the energy to do much beyond the minimum.  They really should be geared and equipped to really help, train, etc.... rather than meddle.

 

@@Stosh, you know.... I guess my real problem is that I wasn't as absolute as I should be.  I want my end date to be now..... but I have stated basically, that it "should be now, because I will absolutely will be gone next February..... so transitioning now gives me time to be around to help if needed"

I have been careful to not say that Feb is my last day, indicating Now is the time.... Well actually this was all presented a few months back.... and was hinted at the start of this school year when I was recruiting for an ASM to groom to take it....

 

For reference "now", because our pack doesn't have a summer program and we just had out last meeting for the school year.... so this is the logical time.

 

We have said that we'll pull together one last parent meeting soon, and my suggestion to the outgoing CC is that we shouldn't have an agenda and not state at all that we are willing if necessary to stick around in the jobs until Feb..... I have laid out the situation, defined the many jobs that are vacant... so I have suggested we get everyone together, and let the rest of them figure out who is doing what, and how.... we'll be there IF they have any questions.....

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