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Major Changes Announced -- Councils Impacted

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2 minutes ago, desertrat77 said:

 Condescending, out of touch management style towards staff and customers alike

Some organizations embrace a culture of failure and cannot tolerate success.

This hits so close to home it hurts. Ownby describing things as "sacred cows" is kinda condescending. I don't like the phrase. One persons sacred cow is another person's core feature. Also, it's also kinda derogatory to Hindu's. There are better phrases to use, but that's neither here or there.

For example, in the 70's, the leadership of the BSA decided in their wisdom that being outdoors and learning outdoor skills was a sacred cow that could be sacrificed for their new vision. Obviously many Scouters felt that they were cutting a core feature, and were ultimately proven right. 

Who knows what is on the chopping block yet. Maybe it's sub programs like OA, Venturing, NYLT, Wood Badge. Maybe it's program features like requirements, It almost certainly involves national or council properties and camps. Saying that people's support of those things is: A sacred cow: "an idea, custom, or institution held, especially unreasonably, to be above criticism (with reference to the Hindus' respect for the cow as a sacred animal). " Is starting out the conversation on a bad note. It mentally causes me to dig my heels in. 

I haven't managed to find the timestamp where he said that, so maybe his tone improved the message significantly, but I think it relates to @desertrat77s point. Given the BSA's track record throughout the years, I don't have any confidence in this "transformation" being anything but failure. This time, unlike the 70's, there isn't a William Hillcourt waiting on the bench to fix things. 

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Posted (edited)

"Sacred cows" at 54:18 into the recording.  Immediately following are the comments about preserving "useful" traditions and how we must "pivot from valuing the past." 

Edited by dkurtenbach

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6 hours ago, fred8033 said:

In some ways, maybe the future is good.  BSA needs to slim down and decide what type of program it is.  BSA needs to trim off all the side programs and focus on the core.  It's just that BSA does not really know what that core is.  Perhaps, BSA should just use the 1910's handbook.   :)

(Emphasis added.)  So right.  When Mr. Ownby talks about preserving "useful" traditions and investing in what BSA customers "value," that is really scary.  What traditions does BSA National consider to be "useful"?  What does BSA National think that customers "value"?  Because I am really afraid they are going to say "badges" and "Eagle Scout."

If asked, I would say, "Do a Good Turn Daily" and "Be Prepared."  

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51 minutes ago, dkurtenbach said:

"Sacred cows" at 54:18 into the recording.  Immediately following are the comments about preserving "useful" traditions and how we must "pivot from valuing the past." 

 

16 minutes ago, dkurtenbach said:

(Emphasis added.)  So right.  When Mr. Ownby talks about preserving "useful" traditions and investing in what BSA customers "value," that is really scary.  What traditions does BSA National consider to be "useful"?  What does BSA National think that customers "value"?  Because I am really afraid they are going to say "badges" and "Eagle Scout."

If asked, I would say, "Do a Good Turn Daily" and "Be Prepared."  

I just listened to his comments more fully. Starting around 52:15, he's talking about changes mostly in light of finances. To me that gives a bit more context about what sacred cows he's talking about. I hope it's more structural, operational than programmatic. The lack of specifics are concerning, but gathering the broader context of his remarks made me feel a bit better. Just gotta wait and see. 

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The upper management of BSA will try to hold on to their jobs, salaries, and pensions.  Everything else is sacred cow.

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1 hour ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

And I feel like I was betrayed by the professionals.

Something I've learned while in the Cadre, never trust a professional who would rather wear a suit than a field uniform. 

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Most of the really good, conscientious, dedicated-to-the-movement professionals (DE's) I have met over the years, got disillusioned or burned out, then left.  I understand this is a common thing, but have no data to back it up.  What is the turnover rate for DE's??

Most (not all) of the professionals I have become acquainted with, who have advanced further, were there for themselves or the hope of future big money as an SE or some position at region/national.  I think this mentality has finally borne its fruit.

Two exchanges really stick in my head...

My first SE, in the council I grew up in, tried to recruit me as a DE when I was graduating college.  I told him "Thanks, but I am going to be a pilot in the Air Force!"

He replied, "Now there's a waste of a good education."  I never spoke to him again.  (And was an officer and pilot for 26 years 😜 ) 

When I retired, and came to this council, looking to get involved, the current SE tried to recruit me as a DE (and later as full time Camp Director).  I asked him what was his biggest headache in the council...

He said, "Volunteers who put on the uniform and think they are equal to me."  I chose neither to befriend him, nor work for him in any hired capacity.

 

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Mission statement:  "" The mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law.""

Goals and aims :  ""  The Aims of Scouting are:  Character, Citizenship, Personal Fitness and Leadership.""   

Methods and objectives:  Ask this of the BSA website and you get this:  https://www.scouting.org/resources/guide-to-advancement/advancement-definied/#2004   ""(advancement) is a method, not an end in itself....""

The TRADITIONAL Scout stuff (outdoor safe adventure, physical challenge,  Patrol (the gang?) working &learning cooperation together,  service to others, earning one's way, etc.) is not readily findable.   

The question should be NOT why we want kids to join Scouting, but WHY DO THE KIDS want to join Scouting? 

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"The Peter Principle is based on the logical idea that competent employees will continue to be promoted, but at some point will be promoted into positions for which they are incompetent, and they will then remain in those positions because of the fact that they do not demonstrate any further competence that would get them recognized for additional promotion. According to the Peter Principle, every position in a given hierarchy will eventually be filled by employees who are incompetent to fulfill the job duties of their respective positions."

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It's been painful these last few years, watching BSA conforming more and more to the whims  of  National, injustices of our legal system and pressure from the never satisfied SJWs.  I know I'm old school but the scouts from my original troop wouldn't recognise the troops of today as being scouts at all.  Cubs maybe but not scouts. 

I hate to think it but...Perhaps it actually kinder to end it quickly rather that suffer a death by a thousand cuts. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, SSScout said:

 

The question should be NOT why we want kids to join Scouting, but WHY DO THE KIDS want to join Scouting? 

Almost every scout I've asked said " For the adventure, the fun, and the friendship."  

When they found out they had been sold a bill of goods they quietly left.

I've said this before but I think it bears repeating as a clear indication of how far and how fast BSA has changed.  In the circle of my extended family we have 7 Eagle Scouts between the ages of 19 and 38. None of them has any intention of enrolling their sons in the current program.

Edited by Oldscout448
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26 minutes ago, SSScout said:

The question should be NOT why we want kids to join Scouting, but WHY DO THE KIDS want to join Scouting? 

I would amend that in this way:  "WHY DO THE PARENTS want their kids to join Scouting?  WHY DO THE KIDS want to stay in Scouting?"  The reason for that change is that most Scouts join as Cub Scouts, and most Cub Scouts join in kindergarten, first grade, or second grade.  At those ages, what really matters is why the parents sign them up.  Later, at Webelos and ScoutsBSA ages, the youth develop their own views about staying in Scouts.

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48 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

 What is the turnover rate for DE's??

Do not know the turnover rate. But I was a DE for 20.5 months. In that time period in my council, 9 DEs left, and 2 middle managers. 6 of those professionals joined after I did, and left before me. Full Staff was 10 DEs/Exploring Exec, 3 middle managers, and 2 upper manager.

And it was not just my council. A lot of people at PDL-1 had similar issues in their council. One DE had wrote her resignation letter and was planning to turn it in the day she returned from PDL-1. Rational for even going to PDL-1 was "I've been through hell the past three months. I've never been to Texas before. I am going to enjoy my 2 week paid vacation." Also there were approximately 80 people in my PDL-1 class which finished in May. By the August "All Hands Meeting" less than half showed up at the PDL-1 reunion party that was part of the conference. Since it was a mandatory meeting, every professional showed up to that one.

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