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JosephMD

Cub Scouters - Stay an Extra Year

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This is such an interesting topic for me, mainly because I am about to be in this situation. My son just started working on his AOL and will be out of the pack come February. I never intended to stay past the next year, but I do not want the pack to fall apart. I don't want the kids to start to hate Cub Scouts. I have a lot of issues with the current CC and the CO, but that does not mean I will abandon the kids. In my honest opinion, I do not understand why some leaders will not go, when they do not have kids in the pack. I understand MAYBE a year after their kids leave, but not for as long as my CC has been with the pack (her son is 17).

 

My plan is this (tell me what you all think)...my current Assistant Cubmaster will move to be the Tiger Leader (his youngest is coming into the pack as a Tiger, then he is moving his youngest when his oldest moves to the Troop with my son). From there I will find another Assistant and train them up on everything it takes to be a good Cubmaster. From there I will lead all meetings until the Blue and Gold is over. After that I will become the Assistant and the other will be the Cubmaster. I will expect them to plan/lead the rest of the pack meetings, with me helping of course. Finally, when the bridging ceremony happens, I will bridge as well.

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@ - I think that is a fine plan.  Ideally, a Cubmaster would step down to Assistant in the Spring of their son's 4th grade Webelos year (around now), allowing their replacement to run the show from Fall Recruiting through Spring rank advancement, while having backup around to offer advice and support throughout that year.  That would be the ideal situation, but the sad reality is it rarely works that way.

 

Also, think about spending an additional year as a Pack Trainer.  The job responsibilities aren't huge, but they are important.  As mentioned above, the Pack Trainer should do the new parent orientation - allowing the front line leadership free to lead the boys.  The Pack Trainer can also make sure that new Den Leaders have a mentor for the first few months, offering tips and suggestions.

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@@meyerc13 - Well the plan was to have the current Assistant Cubmaster take over, but his son is coming in as a Tiger now and he will be moving his son to a different pack after his son finishes Tiger (mostly because of issues with CC and CO). This is why I will try and identify a new ACM to come learn under me and teach them what I know to prepare them. I really hope I do find one, because if not I really do not know what to do.

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I might be stuck staying whether I like it or not! We can't find a new treasurer to replace me. The CM volunteered so he could get out of being CM... but he has not even finished paying for his popcorn yet, so no way he's getting the checkbook. So then he tried to volun-told someone and she told me she was willing to try but isn't very good with math or computers. Sigh.... 

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you'll not find a replacement as long as you are willing to keep on doing it.

When you are done, say so.

Someone will step up.... or not.

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@@heat4212... I can empathize, Treasurer is a really hard role to fill.  When I became Cubmaster for my Pack, the previous Cubmaster handed me the checkbook.  It seems that over several rounds of leader changes, our Pack had consistently been having only the Cubmaster as a signer on the Pack Checking Account.  For four years, I tried to recruit someone to take over that responsibility.  At one point, we had someone volunteer, but after a few months she quit without having done anything more than filling out a leader application.  And I was still stuck as the only person on the account.

 

Eventually I was able to get the Committee Chair on the account too, and before I stepped down as Cubmaster this year the Pack Secretary was also added to the account.  At least now the Committee is holding the purse strings instead of the new Cubmaster, so we're headed in the right direction, but it was a long painful process (for me!).  Even though I regularly reported to the Committee on what money was coming in and what was going out, I wasn't comfortable reimbursing myself for expenses incurred by me personally when the Pack checkbook wasn't an option.  There are some stores and businesses that won't take a check, so I paid out of my own account.  This past year, before the Committee Chair was added to the account, that number was over $1,000 and I was able to get reimbursed for the first time.  Since our Pack is in a financially disadvantaged area, I know that the Pack needs the money more than I do, so I didn't submit reimbursement requests for the prior 2 years, although I know that each year I was spending at least that much out of pocket without getting a dime back from the Pack.

 

Good luck passing along your role... if I might suggest check with your chartered org.  Perhaps they have a retired (or even current) Accountant, banker, auditor, etc. who would love to help out.  Compared to what they are used to, the amount of work for the Pack account isn't a lot, but I can tell you from experience that adding it on top of other Pack jobs is a bad idea.  There were times where I was trying to run a Pack meeting and people were handing me wads of cash to pay for something or another.  Since I knew I wouldn't remember later why I had $140 in my pocket, I'd have to drop what I was doing and jot a note if not a receipt.  Honestly, I found that more stressful than not getting reimbursed for what I spent on the Pack.

 

The good news is that for the first time in a long time the Pack had an awesome popcorn sale, stuck to a budget, and finished the year with a comfortable sum in the Pack account to carry us into the fall.  I'm hopeful that going forward that the Pack can survive without the cash infusions from the Cubmaster.  I'm a little worried though, because my son was one of our top two popcorn sellers by a wide margin the past two years, and he and the popcorn kernel's son (the other top seller) just aged out of the Pack.  Between the two of them, their popcorn sales amount to the buffer left in the Pack account this year.  Hopefully someone steps up.  If not, I know our Pack Committee is strong enough now to come up with alternate fundraising if the popcorn sale doesn't go as well as this past year.

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you'll not find a replacement as long as you are willing to keep on doing it.

When you are done, say so.

Someone will step up.... or not.

Well apparently I the bad person for saying up front that I will be leaving with my son at the end of next year...I will be leaving and they know it...not sure if they are willing to accept it yet though

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Well apparently I the bad person for saying up front that I will be leaving with my son at the end of next year...I will be leaving and they know it...not sure if they are willing to accept it yet though

 

You gave them notice, that's considerate. The CC and CM should be putting 2 people in each role so that the second person can under study the primary person. Succession planning is one of the goals of JTE. If you are in a "gold" unit then this should already be in place.

 

In Cubs you need to just stand up, give notice of your intended departure, take steps to transition your knowledge (either in person or via a document) and then you leave. There should be no guilt in your leaving if enough notice is given and knowledge is transferred.

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My only concern is that the CC is our former CM and she does not want to do it, she also does not want the pack to die (I do not either). She never did anything worthwhile during pack meetings and never planned anything extra nor did she communicate with the parents very well. I feel guilty because I feel bad for the kids in that pack because they may lose interest if no one steps up and the CC has to take over as CM...

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My only concern is that the CC is our former CM and she does not want to do it, she also does not want the pack to die (I do not either). She never did anything worthwhile during pack meetings and never planned anything extra nor did she communicate with the parents very well. I feel guilty because I feel bad for the kids in that pack because they may lose interest if no one steps up and the CC has to take over as CM...

 

But you can't think like that. Your pack has other parents, let them step up. We did, didn't we? We did it so our kid (and the other kids) would have a pack and den.

 

I have seen three packs locally fold from such ambivalence by parents. It is easier for them to pick up and move to another pack then step up and take over the existing pack. 

 

You can only do so much for others until they have to do for themselves. At some point you need to just walk away and move on, knowing you've done all you can to help position them for success. The rest is up to the remaining parents.

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But you can't think like that. Your pack has other parents, let them step up. We did, didn't we? We did it so our kid (and the other kids) would have a pack and den.

 

I have seen three packs locally fold from such ambivalence by parents. It is easier for them to pick up and move to another pack then step up and take over the existing pack. 

 

You can only do so much for others until they have to do for themselves. At some point you need to just walk away and move on, knowing you've done all you can to help position them for success. The rest is up to the remaining parents.

We may have other parents, but all of them either already volunteered to be a leader (only DL) or just hide from volunteering to do things. I am at a point now where our advancement chair wants to step down to be the ADL to the Webelos and asked another parent to take over. The problem is that parent never helps and talks loudly while other are doing the work to make things fun for her son...I am VERY skeptical with letting her become a leader. If she does not do it then what?!?

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We may have other parents, but all of them either already volunteered to be a leader (only DL) or just hide from volunteering to do things. I am at a point now where our advancement chair wants to step down to be the ADL to the Webelos and asked another parent to take over. The problem is that parent never helps and talks loudly while other are doing the work to make things fun for her son...I am VERY skeptical with letting her become a leader. If she does not do it then what?!?

 

I hear ya. It is never easy when there is not a clear succession plan.

 

I can tell you that two of the packs that folded in my area did the following:

  • 1 Year Out: Met with the Pack parents to let them know who was leaving in a year. Asked for volunteers to under study roles.
  • Monthly: Continued to ask parents to help out, train them. Noted that if no one stepped up the pack would fold.
  • 8 Months Out: Brought in the DE to help get parents motivated. Showed parents how easy it was to take over.
  • 6 Months Out: Continued to encourage parents to volunteer. 
  • 3 Months Out: Told parents the pack was folding and gave them the list of packs near their house. 

The leaders had to just walk away. You can't drag people to volunteer and you can't worry about how good a job they will do. No one will ever do it as good as you did.

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I hear ya. It is never easy when there is not a clear succession plan.

 

I can tell you that two of the packs that folded in my area did the following:

  • 1 Year Out: Met with the Pack parents to let them know who was leaving in a year. Asked for volunteers to under study roles.
  • Monthly: Continued to ask parents to help out, train them. Noted that if no one stepped up the pack would fold.
  • 8 Months Out: Brought in the DE to help get parents motivated. Showed parents how easy it was to take over.
  • 6 Months Out: Continued to encourage parents to volunteer. 
  • 3 Months Out: Told parents the pack was folding and gave them the list of packs near their house. 

The leaders had to just walk away. You can't drag people to volunteer and you can't worry about how good a job they will do. No one will ever do it as good as you did.

Wow, well I hope it does not come to that. I will be talking with my parents over the next few months and try and find my replacement on my own. If the new Scout year starts and I still don't have anyone, then I will have to make a general announcement. I don't think it will fold, mainly because the CC has been with the pack since her son was a Cub like 8-9 years ago. She basically said she will be with it forever...except she is the reason people are leaving so we will see what happens. Thanks for the help on that one

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Wow, well I hope it does not come to that. I will be talking with my parents over the next few months and try and find my replacement on my own. If the new Scout year starts and I still don't have anyone, then I will have to make a general announcement. I don't think it will fold, mainly because the CC has been with the pack since her son was a Cub like 8-9 years ago. She basically said she will be with it forever...except she is the reason people are leaving so we will see what happens. Thanks for the help on that one

 

I hope that helps. You sound like you all (pack leadership) are talking to the right people. I would engage the DE early just in case, same with the COR (assuming they are active). Maybe even a nice pre-appreciation gift for those who volunteer.

 

One of the packs that folded had been around for nearly 20 years. It just got to the point where the parents could not be bothered. Hopefully your parents sense the urgency, realize you guys will train them and give them support.

 

Good luck!

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