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Why does the BSA have a "volunteer board" model?


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3 hours ago, SiouxRanger said:

Why does the BSA, like so many not-for-profits, have a volunteer board?

Because they cannot afford to pay them ūüėú

In fact, most councils I know use their Boards as a source of revenue.  That is, if you want to participate in the governance of the council serving our local community, you must pay for the privilege... annually.

Going rate for a seat on our Board locally is $5K per year, my sources say...

Somehow, being on the Board here, whether they do anything or not, is a source of some sort of social credit in the circles they travel in...

https://www.501c3.org/nonprofits-board-directors/

https://www.energizeinc.com/hot-topics/2012/august

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Just wondering what it is supposed to do.

Why not just have professionals who run the not-for-profit?

Our board only meets quarterly. Hardly any committees and those (maybe one) are/is barely active.

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It is a corporation.  By law, all corporations must have a Board of Directors.  (even non-profit corporations)

Whether they fulfill their responsibilities or not is another matter.

15 minutes ago, SiouxRanger said:

Just wondering what it is supposed to do.

Why not just have professionals who run the not-for-profit?

Our board only meets quarterly. Hardly any committees and those (maybe one) are/is barely active.

Ever think that this is the way your SE and BSA National like it???

Things that make you go ...hmmmmm

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1 hour ago, scoutldr said:

I think their main job is to hire the SE...after National tells them who it will be.  

I actually heard of a council board firing the SE. Sadly he got hired in a larger council as a DFS.

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29 minutes ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

I actually heard of a council board firing the SE. Sadly he got hired in a larger council as a DFS.

I know an SE that got fired from his council, came here as Field Director, and is now back as an SE in another council.

It does happen, sadly...  they survive and keep feeding at the trough.

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6 hours ago, SiouxRanger said:

Just wondering what it is supposed to do.

Why not just have professionals who run the not-for-profit?

Just what they do in other non-profits and for profits. Advise, set some policy, and hire those that run the day to day. 

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The "pay to play" board models have become the norm. For many, the boards have abdicated their oversight responsibility and given over complete control to their CEO/Executive to the point where that employee dictates board policy and even who serves on the board. The boards are now that person's subordinate. Certain organizations which consult for boards have been infiltrated and now recommend even more drastic changes to by-laws which have the effect of making the situation even worse. When the executive is able to insulate themself from any accountability they have become a despot.

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10 minutes ago, DuctTape said:

The "pay to play" board models have become the norm. For many, the boards have abdicated their oversight responsibility and given over complete control to their CEO/Executive to the point where that employee dictates board policy and even who serves on the board. The boards are now that person's subordinate. Certain organizations which consult for boards have been infiltrated and now recommend even more drastic changes to by-laws which have the effect of making the situation even worse. When the executive is able to insulate themself from any accountability they have become a despot.

@DuctTape for National Commissioner!!!

Edited by InquisitiveScouter
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Just now, Eagle94-A1 said:

Sadly @DuctTape is correct d some SEs are indeed despots.  BSA pros have been going on for some time. I remember an SE telling his subordinates how to do it on the district level. 

My observations over the years:   

Turnover of DE's is extremely high.  In general, those that take the role out of a passion for Scouting, helping youth, and program in the outdoors are rapidly disabused of those notions under the whip of money and membership, often being asked to depart from the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law.

So, many, many leave after a short time.  Those that remain (there are exceptions!!!) are often not the type of person we would want in that role...  And the long production line of poor leadership and deficiencies in executive development begins. 

The product is people who hang on in horrible, unethical work environments long enough to get vested in a pension program, and potentially get on the "SE Gravy Train" of an inflated executive salary, if they can work the system and get hired into that position in a council somewhere.  And their primary goal is preservation of that system, which has rewarded them for their perseverance.

Again, I have met some wonderful counter-examples.  But, on the collected whole, I think my assessment, although negative, is accurate.

And I love to hear about those successful counter-examples, so fire away! (They are what give me "a fool's hope") https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y0S_MebzyzQ&ab_channel=Ejdamm

 

 

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We had a DE, who still works for the council, that is the exception. He could have been a great SM. Very optimistic in spite of serious problems with the CE, put the units first and figured everything else would take care of itself.

He's the exception because all the rest were either incompetent, quit in frustration or were pushed out.

But back to the board. A board that doesn't fulfill its job combined with a hiring model that filters out the best and then only hires from within is why I will never expect the kind of leadership that could turn this program around.

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32 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

My observations over the years:   

Turnover of DE's is extremely high.  In general, those that take the role out of a passion for Scouting, helping youth, and program in the outdoors are rapidly disabused of those notions under the whip of money and membership, often being asked to depart from the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law.

All true. I would also add horrific leadership who will punish you if you do the right thing.

Another factor probably not as well known is stress on family life. The divorce rate is extremely high among pros. Worse case was the DE who supported his wife through law school. First thing she did once admitted to the bar was serve him divorce papers. One of my coworkers was on wife three.

 

32 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

So, many, many leave after a short time.  Those that remain (there are exceptions!!!) are often not the type of person we would want in that role...  And the long production line of poor leadership and deficiencies in executive development begins. 

The few exceptions are working twice as hard to meet their goals. And if the higher ups are on their case, even if meeting goals, they continue adding pressure to you until you want to quit. 

 

32 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

The product is people who hang on in horrible, unethical work environments long enough to get vested in a pension program, and potentially get on the "SE Gravy Train" of an inflated executive salary, if they can work the system and get hired into that position in a council somewhere.  And their primary goal is preservation of that system, which has rewarded them for their perseverance. 

100% correct. Add in get promoted to a national position. Seen a  horrific SE get promoted to a national position.

32 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

Again, I have met some wonderful counter-examples.  But, on the collected whole, I think my assessment, although negative, is accurate.

 

Sadly it seems that even if you get a good SE, he was  "punished" for something. One of the best, honest, hardworking SE's I've ever met  was "promoted" to an SE position that really was a demotion. He was a Director of Field Service in a very large metro council. He discovered some financial irregularities that eventually led to embezzlement charges. His "reward" was being promoted to one of the smallest councils in the BSA. One field director he had as DFS of the Metro council had more DEs under than, than the entire council he became SE of.

It gets frustrating for the good ones.

32 minutes ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

And I love to hear about those successful counter-examples, so fire away! (They are what give me "a fool's hope") https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y0S_MebzyzQ&ab_channel=Ejdamm

 

 

 

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