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Thread: AMS 2016 and new rules for ECs

  1. #106
    Very Old Member BigBadBaloo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merryweather View Post
    i am both a volunteer scouter and a professional scouter, whatever way you want to define them.

    TM
    Presumably that means you get paid for some of your time spent Scouting but not all of it.
    Peter

    Former CSL - 2nd Bracknell


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  2. #107
    ADC (Support) & DMM mediamanager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigBadBaloo View Post
    Presumably that means you get paid for some of your time spent Scouting but not all of it.
    For those, like BBB, hung up on "profession" meaning "paid" then I confirm that I was a professional Scouter and was paid well .... though the remuneration I received wasn't of monetary nature but in the feelings of satisfaction and contentment.

    If Scouters aren't prepared to do their best in a role then they are breaking the promise which they made.
    Mark Pullen
    Bradford South District (ADC (Support) & DMM)
    Trustee - 7th SV Gomersal Scout Group

    Formerly:
    Cub SA - 3rd SV Scholes Scout Group
    Hove Edge Scout Group (GSL, Trustee)
    West Yorkshire Scout County (ACC Cubs, Agent 2:007, County Secretary, County MM, Gang Show Secretary, Gang Show Media)
    Keighley District (ADC Cubs, ADC Beavers, DMM, Trustee)
    8th Keighley Scout Group (ACSL, CSL, GSL, Group Chair)

    All posts made by myself are of a personal nature.

  3. #108
    Very Old Member BigBadBaloo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mediamanager View Post
    For those, like BBB, hung up on "profession" meaning "paid" then I confirm that I was a professional Scouter and was paid well .... though the remuneration I received wasn't of monetary nature but in the feelings of satisfaction and contentment.

    If Scouters aren't prepared to do their best in a role then they are breaking the promise which they made.
    I am not "hung up" on profession meaning paid. I happen to know that some Scouters have paid roles as well as voluntary ones!
    Peter

    Former CSL - 2nd Bracknell


    A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.¯ Lao Tzu (600 BC - 531 BC)

  4. #109
    a quiver full of barbs merryweather's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mediamanager View Post
    For those, like BBB, hung up on "profession" meaning "paid" then I confirm that I was a professional Scouter and was paid well .... though the remuneration I received wasn't of monetary nature but in the feelings of satisfaction and contentment.

    If Scouters aren't prepared to do their best in a role then they are breaking the promise which they made.
    i'm pretty sure that BBB is not hung up on there being paid scouters! we all do scouting for lots of reasons and i do not place these in some sort of hierarchy.

    in fact i'm pretty sure that BBB has conversed with a 'professional (paid)' scouter and i bet there's even one on this forum.

    TM
    going...going...still here...just

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  6. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by mediamanager View Post
    If Scouters aren't prepared to do their best in a role then they are breaking the promise which they made.
    Yes, but what's "your best"? To an unemployed person or someone who works from home and thus has no travel time to work it might mean doing an almost full time job. To a City commuter it might be the 2 hours a week and occasionally being late because the trains were a mess. I've done both. We can never expect Scouting to take priority over paid employment, as you need that to live.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by merryweather View Post
    in fact i'm pretty sure that BBB has conversed with a 'professional (paid)' scouter and i bet there's even one on this forum.
    Wayne is a volunteer. Our Unity correspondent...well, interesting question, a Scouter or a professional insurance broker? Probably both.

    Neil

  7. #111
    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil Williams View Post
    Yes, but what's "your best"? To an unemployed person or someone who works from home and thus has no travel time to work it might mean doing an almost full time job. To a City commuter it might be the 2 hours a week and occasionally being late because the trains were a mess. I've done both. We can never expect Scouting to take priority over paid employment, as you need that to live.
    But I think "your best" is "the best you can do within the circumstances". So if you can only do 2 hours a week and are sometimes late because of the train, that might be "your best". If you are fortunate enough to give 30 or 40 hours a week to Scouting then that might be "your best". Flexible volunteering at "it's best".

    If your time is limited, then you need to be realistic about what you can and cannot commit to doing... far better to be honest and say "I don't have time to do X" than to try to do more than you have time for.

    Wayne is a volunteer. Our Unity correspondent...well, interesting question, a Scouter or a professional insurance broker? Probably both.

    Neil
    TM wasn't talking about Wayne, or PGreenfield, But there is a paid Scouter on these forums....

    It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves

  8. #112
    ADC (Support) & DMM mediamanager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil Williams View Post
    Yes, but what's "your best"? To an unemployed person or someone who works from home and thus has no travel time to work it might mean doing an almost full time job. To a City commuter it might be the 2 hours a week and occasionally being late because the trains were a mess. I've done both. We can never expect Scouting to take priority over paid employment, as you need that to live.
    I never considered what time you can offer Scouting as being a direct reflection on whether you are doing your best.

    In addition, I would never imagine Scouting taking priority over employment. The same goes for family commitments.

    What I do see as whether somebody is doing their best is what energy / enthusiasm is given when Scouting.
    Too often I've witnessed individuals who are lacklustre to say the least.
    Mark Pullen
    Bradford South District (ADC (Support) & DMM)
    Trustee - 7th SV Gomersal Scout Group

    Formerly:
    Cub SA - 3rd SV Scholes Scout Group
    Hove Edge Scout Group (GSL, Trustee)
    West Yorkshire Scout County (ACC Cubs, Agent 2:007, County Secretary, County MM, Gang Show Secretary, Gang Show Media)
    Keighley District (ADC Cubs, ADC Beavers, DMM, Trustee)
    8th Keighley Scout Group (ACSL, CSL, GSL, Group Chair)

    All posts made by myself are of a personal nature.

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  10. #113
    Senior Member Bushfella's Avatar
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    I seem to recall this discussion about "doing your best" many moons ago on UKRS.

    The gist was that everyone should be presumed to be doing their personal best. Given the benefit of the doubt. Which, is actually very commendable as an approach to scouting and volunteering.

    However, as Mark says, many people are, to use his words lacklustre. However, I suspect those people would be lacklustre in anything that they did. So, perhaps they really are doing their best.

    I went out of my way to do the best I could for my Group. It really upset a lot of people. I was told by more than one DC to "tone it down". To stop appearing everywhere (with Scouts), to cut back on the press campaign. To use the DC's words, "You are making some pople feel bad about hat they are doing."

    When I got grant, after grant, after grant, and others sat and whinged about not being able to get any funding. It was because I took the time to fill out the forms they couldn't be bothered finding and completing. (When I offered to help them I was ignored - one Leader said "Thanks for the offer, but I don't want to piss off District" - ***?!).

    When I was having Leaders call me to join us, and others were failing to even respond to their enquiries, whose fault was it that they joined us and not them? Why should an applicant wait five months for a response to a membership enquiry?

    I'm sorry, there is something wrong when we are led by the lowest common denominator. Instead of chasing stars, we all too often wade through mud. The plain refusal to see that is why some places in Scouting will never succeed.

    PS: With Navigators, we have had one single press release, issued when we launched. I now have as many Navs as I had Scouts and Explorers, which means we outnumber the local Troops/ Unit. People can't even find our website because it is an abscure group that no-one would really look for. Go figure.
    Last edited by Bushfella; 21-07-2015 at 08:35 AM.
    Ewan Scott

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  11. #114
    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushfella View Post
    I'm sorry, there is something wrong when we are led by the lowest common denominator. Instead of chasing stars, we all too often wade through mud. The plain refusal to see that is why some places in Scouting will never succeed.
    Sadly "leading by the lowest common denominator" seems to be the way things are done these days.

    I was once told by a leader that we should do less activities as its not fair to the YP in groups whose leaders can't dedicate as much time to running activities

    But is this any different to schools, where high achievers are held back waiting for those at a lower level to catch up?
    or the motorways where speed limits are set to make roads safe for those not capable of safely driving at a higher speed (either drivers or vehicles)

    The recipe for a successful group has to be a good volunteer team.,.. one which works well as a team (whether thats a small team with each individual doing a lot, or a large team with each individual doing a little) led by a committed GSL and Chair.

    If our Cubs or Scouts go a whole term without a nights away experience, our leader team (not just me - but most of the leaders on the team) feel like we are failing at what we are meant to be doing, whereas other groups manage to go years without running camps.

    I have mixed memories of my childhood in Scouting. Cubs were, frankly, rubbish. Every week spent playing games, one camp a year (where tents were already put up for us), a constant mix of football and indoor hockey with the odd craft activity thrown in. With the exception of one funday at Walesby Forest, we didn't do anything adventurous. Ever. Even the hike at summer camp was 2 hours following the leaders out to a point a couple of miles from camp then turning around and walking back the same way. Scouts (at a different group) on the other hand was amazing (partly thanks to some excellent patrol leaders) with well organised camps, adventurous activities, trips, and a good level of discipline.

    It is easy to cut corners and run a section like a youth group - just play games, do simple craft activities, etc. Or we can take things up a notch, and as leaders we can challenge ourselves. I hear leaders talk about two year rolling programmes and find myself thinking "how dull... for the leaders". I suspect the key difference is leaders who are running a section for the kids, and pick the easiest way to keep the kids entertained, vs leaders who like to challenge themselves, come up with new ideas (which sometimes don't work so well!), and do new things, go to new places, etc.

    The same has to be true on execs. If someone is in the chair role just because "POR says we need a chair", if all they do is sit at the head of the table at meetins and run through the agenda, then it is an easy role. If they actively support the group, help with fundraising, drive the van to camp, run the AGM, organise catering at events, and get involved in the Scouting, then it is far more of a commitment. I see Chairs who don't ever meet the young people, or I see chairs who are heavily involved.

    It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves

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  13. #115
    ADC (Support) & DMM mediamanager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by recneps View Post
    The same has to be true on execs. If someone is in the chair role just because "POR says we need a chair", if all they do is sit at the head of the table at meetins and run through the agenda, then it is an easy role. If they actively support the group, help with fundraising, drive the van to camp, run the AGM, organise catering at events, and get involved in the Scouting, then it is far more of a commitment. I see Chairs who don't ever meet the young people, or I see chairs who are heavily involved.
    Whilst I agree on most of your post(s) - IMHO a chair who engages with programme (and therefore the kids) is a bonus BUT I'd rather they focussed on the trustee element fully. Time given to engaging with the kids could be better spent potentially.

    Sometimes there's a blurring of roles ..... not always bad but something to keep an eye on.
    Mark Pullen
    Bradford South District (ADC (Support) & DMM)
    Trustee - 7th SV Gomersal Scout Group

    Formerly:
    Cub SA - 3rd SV Scholes Scout Group
    Hove Edge Scout Group (GSL, Trustee)
    West Yorkshire Scout County (ACC Cubs, Agent 2:007, County Secretary, County MM, Gang Show Secretary, Gang Show Media)
    Keighley District (ADC Cubs, ADC Beavers, DMM, Trustee)
    8th Keighley Scout Group (ACSL, CSL, GSL, Group Chair)

    All posts made by myself are of a personal nature.

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    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mediamanager View Post
    Whilst I agree on most of your post(s) - IMHO a chair who engages with programme (and therefore the kids) is a bonus BUT I'd rather they focussed on the trustee element fully. Time given to engaging with the kids could be better spent potentially.

    Sometimes there's a blurring of roles ..... not always bad but something to keep an eye on.
    I think the chair has to at least visit the sections from time to time in order to properly understand what the "frontline" aspect of Scouting is all about.

    Probably less of an issue where the chair is a parent (ours has a kid in each section) but where the chair is someone from outside i think they do need an understanding of what we actually do.

    It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves

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    In terms of 'doing your best'.

    An Explorer Unit meets on Sunday nights, what they do is nearly always decided on the hoof. They rarely go out on Sundays on planned/booked/paid for excursions (mostly because its Sunday right enough) They also rarely do 'activities' in the hall - the young folk are all friends out of Scouts so often just chat the night away - its almost like a very loosely structured meeting of young people who'd probably be seeing each other anyway.

    They're doing DoE through school but they still do an annual expedition (lasting a week) with Explorers. Weekend camps are few and far between - last one was over a year ago.

    Is the leader doing his best? Its me and even I'd say he wasn't. However, I also have responsibility for elderly and chronically ill parents who live separately (30 miles apart.) Truly, most people have no idea what that entails - currently I'm trying to get Guardianship for one of them and even that is only 5% of the current workload. I also have a full time job - I have Saturdays to myself till around 4pm unless I'm on Mum or Dad duty earlier - same thing on Sundays. Through the week is a no-go, I go to work then go to one or other parent. I'm usually home and able to sit down in my own house for 9pm-ish.

    My point is; you simply can't sit in judgement (high expectations are a form of judgement) on volunteers 'doing there best' because you have no idea what constraints they have. The notion that groups peopled by volunteers who weren't perceived to be 'doing their best' are best closed is a stupid thing to suggest. Show me a leader who isn't making compromises elsewhere in life to be involved in Scouting and I'll show you a pack of starved chihuahua's that are uninterested in a chicken wing.

    I feel bad that we don't do more on our meeting nights, but I go straight there from my Mum's place - I just don't have the time. Its also why I get a bit peeved at these airy comments about leaders 'doing their best' and righteous expositions about standards.

    I was going to say this is different from a volunteer who is just a bit rubbish - but is it? There are those who might look at my contribution and say "he just turns up at five to seven on a Sunday and they all sit and eat sweets and chat - they don't do anything 'scouty' at all." Equally, this wouldn't account for people having an unfortunate demeanour... If you know what I mean.

    That's the kind of volunteer snobbery I was talking about - I experienced it myself first hand at Fordell during national camps, would you believe other leaders refused to shake my hand? Volunteers who have very high standards are invaluable to the organisation because they do maintain standards, but when they expect the same from others, they need to understand that not all volunteers are able to give that level of commitment and demanding that they do, is a bit of a slap in the face - you can get away with that in the workplace, but not in a voluntary organisation.

    Its also quite unattractive in a set-up that sells itself on egalitarianism and the Promise and Laws.

  17. #118
    a quiver full of barbs merryweather's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil Williams View Post
    Wayne is a volunteer. Our Unity correspondent...well, interesting question, a Scouter or a professional insurance broker? Probably both.
    neither of these. in fact, i can see that our professional (paid) scouter has made a contribution to this thread. moving on!

    i think it's very important that all GEC members receive appropriate training and a new module 1 focused on their roles and responsibilities would be welcome. i do not think such a requirement is too onerous. it would help to ensure that GEC members are made aware of their legal responsibilities, which the good GECs do already and the others need to do. i dislike any 'segregation' on the GEC, believing that officers, for example, have 'more important' roles than other members; they do not.

    but isn't training a treasurer who is an accountant a waste of time? no one's training them to be an accountant! the training is focused on their responsibilities as charity trustees. if someone on the GEC has prior learning or experience then this should be accredited and undertaking module 1 excused.

    TM
    going...going...still here...just

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  19. #119
    Senior Member Bushfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merryweather View Post
    but isn't training a treasurer who is an accountant a waste of time? no one's training them to be an accountant! the training is focused on their responsibilities as charity trustees. if someone on the GEC has prior learning or experience then this should be accredited and undertaking module 1 excused.

    TM
    Indeed, the accountant may be able to balance the books in compliance with tax law, deal with VAT, and wages, but there are slight nuances to Scout accounts that need pointing out.

    For example, the subs received at group might well include the AMS. The subs income over the year WILL include ANS to Group, District, et al. The element of the AMS NOT retained by the Group, ie the Levy element, should be deducted from the income of the group and not be shown as an expenditure, for example. Your AMS figure is netted off. One of the rare examples of netting off that we should use.

    So, one should train all in the operation of the GEC. No prior learning accounted for because that prior learning may not be in line ith what TSA expects.
    Ewan Scott

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  20. #120
    ADC (Support) & DMM mediamanager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pa_broon74 View Post
    .......The notion that groups peopled by volunteers who weren't perceived to be 'doing their best' are best closed is a stupid thing to suggest.
    Agree totally .... thankfully I never said that!
    Mark Pullen
    Bradford South District (ADC (Support) & DMM)
    Trustee - 7th SV Gomersal Scout Group

    Formerly:
    Cub SA - 3rd SV Scholes Scout Group
    Hove Edge Scout Group (GSL, Trustee)
    West Yorkshire Scout County (ACC Cubs, Agent 2:007, County Secretary, County MM, Gang Show Secretary, Gang Show Media)
    Keighley District (ADC Cubs, ADC Beavers, DMM, Trustee)
    8th Keighley Scout Group (ACSL, CSL, GSL, Group Chair)

    All posts made by myself are of a personal nature.

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