Baloo's Bugle

July 2008 Cub Scout Roundtable Issue

Volume 14, Issue 12
August 2008 Theme

Webelos: Forester & Naturalist
Tiger Cub


Recruiting Adult Leaders

Bill Smith, the Roundtable Guy

Training Tips

Since its inception, about a year ago, National’s Cubcast has steadily improved as the hosts, Robert and Kristen along with their various guests settle into an effective routine. These monthly podcasts make great additions to Roundtables and can be a great help for all leaders.

Last month their program featured some important tips on internet safety that all parents should listen to and understand. The guest expert was Linda Griddle, author of Look Both Ways, a guide to online safety measures. It was a valuable and effective presentation that should be recommended to all parents of kids who go online.

And now for something completely different,

Good Cub Scout packs have good leaders.
Leaders who have the enthusiasm, the dedication and the skills to make the program successful are essential to getting a good Cub pack. All the training and planning in the world won’t help unless there are quality people to lead the dens and the pack.

So, how do you get the right people to be leaders in your pack? What are the secrets to find them and then get them to sign on? It takes a bit of planning and hard work, but it can be done and it is worth the effort. If your pack is going to continue to put on a great program for boys then it’s up to the current leadership to make sure that only the best people be recruited.

Pack Leadership Inventory
It starts by determining the needs of your pack. Take an inventory of pack leadership to deter­mine the numbers of quality leaders needed based on the numbers of dens needed. This can help ensure that a pack maintains good membership. The inventory should be taken in the early spring so if you haven’t done it yet, you are running late.

A common mistake of many packs is to fill needed positions with people already responsible for other leadership jobs. Overloading a good leader is a sure way to weaken any pack. It usually happens when it seems easier to take on another job than to find someone else to do it. That often indicates that we really don’t have a cohesive plan to find and recruit a new leader.

Being a good Cub Scout leader takes more than just running the meetings - that's the easy part.
Interacting with other adults - especially parents - is the essential job quality of Cub Scout leadership.

Each time we take on another job that could be done by a parent who is not performing as a role model for his/her son we are admitting that we have failed. Instead of sharing responsibility we have opted for the easy work around: do it ourselves instead of teaching others that it is better that they do it

Worse, we have hurt two boys. We have hurt our own sons because the time it takes to do the second (or third and so on) job often comes from the time needed to fulfill our duties as Akela to our own sons, and also, we have deprived another boy the chance to see his parent be a hero - doing something important in his Cub pack.

Never, never do anything that you can possibly get another parent to do.

Recruiting adults—A few tips

·         Understand that very few adults will volunteer to help; most will wait to be asked.

·         Make use of the “Parent and Family Talent Survey” form

·         Many adults will be hesitant to help if they weren’t Scouts as kids.  Remind them that some of the best Scout leaders in our Council weren’t Scouts as kids and that the training offered will fill in key knowledge gaps.

·         Call your monthly “Pack Leader” meetings “Pack Parent” meetings to eliminate the stigma that the meeting is just for pack leaders.

·         Mention key open leader positions during your pack meetings

·         Try to recruit 2 den leaders for each den

·         Work hard at all levels to make adult leaders feel that they are part of a team and appreciated

·         Conduct an annual pack planning meeting in the summer and encourage all pack families to be represented there

Pacific Pacific Skyline Council

Selecting the right prospects
What do you know about the parents of boys in your pack?

Try to match people with jobs. Have you had all the parents fill out a Parent Talent Survey Sheet? Some years ago I found a great Personal Information sheet on the internet. You can download a copy from:

Busy people make the best leaders. It may seem that the best prospect for the job is too involved in other things to take on your request. Never say “No” for someone else. If the job you propose is important enough, they will find a way to do it.

Choosing a recruiter
Who knows the prospect? Is there someone in your organization who commands the respect of the one you hope to recruit? Someone to whom they might answer, “Yes.”  Pick someone the prospect knows and respects to do the recruiting. It could be anyone in your community – not necessarily from your pack.

Why are you asking?
Tell the prospect up front, why the job is important and why people think that he/she is the best person to make it a success. If you have done your selecting job correctly, you should be able to give a whole list of reasons why that person is the right one for that job.


What is the job?
Lay out precisely as possible what the job entails. How much time, what skills will be needed. What training and support is available. Be as honest and accurate as you can. If you tell a person that it will be easy and take only an hour a week when you know it will be much more than that, the disappointment you cause will come back to haunt you.

Closing the Deal
Never attempt to recruit over the phone or standing up at a meeting and asking for volunteers.

The key factor is asking them personally. This should be done in a face to face situation, preferably while you are wearing your uniform. If you ask someone personally to basically give what you're giving, it is much harder for them to say no. 

You may have a list of two or three prospects for the same job and the top candidate just can not take on the responsibility. Then you might ask the #1 candidate if he/she would be willing to help the next person on your list if they were recruited. If so, you will have some added ammunition when you approach the second candidate. “Marge (who has talent for this) says that she will be glad to assist only if you will take on this job.”

Provide Training, Recognition and Support.
Make sure that your new Cub Scouters have all the training, the materials and the help and cooperation they need to do their jobs. Recognize them regularly at pack meetings, in your newsletters and on your pack website. Ask for their comments, advice or reports at leaders’ meetings. It can be frustrating to be asked to do a job and then to be totally ignored.


In Scouting, we are in serious competition
with a host of adversaries:

We compete against intolerance, violence and hate;
We compete against neglect, deceit and abuse;
We compete against drugs and street gangs;
We compete against rejection, loneliness, and humiliation;
We compete against illiteracy, ignorance and despair.

What are YOU going to do now?

Go get ‘em. We need all the help we can get.

  The best gift for a Cub Scout.......
              ......get his parents involved!

ü  Also, be sure to visit Bill’s website

to finds more ideas on everything Cub Scouting.

Have any Comments for Bill
just click right here!


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