Poor Mrs. Sloan
She did her best, poor Mrs. Sloan,
To run the troop all alone.
She made the cakes, she trimmed the tree,
She made the favours personally.
She bought the food, she made the fire,
She set the trail through bush and briar.
‘Girls are so slow’ she always said,
‘Might as well do the job instead.’
She made the plans and carried them through,
And the girls grew bored with nothing to do.
They went their way, and she lies here,
Worn to a frazzle, the poor old dear!
New London Area, girl Scouts Council Inc. USA
There are many theories on the best method of leadership but Guiding aims to achieve results through democratic or shared leadership. Here the leader guides the members of her group to express their own opinions, allowing room for individual talent and growth. This method works on the principle that those who help make decisions are committed to carrying them out.
The Guides may not always arrive at a decision you agree with, but it is your role to help them learn from experience. You are there to structure and enlarge the scope of their thinking, to provide encouragement and to help them reach definite conclusions.
It is important that all the leaders in the unit feel needed and valued. It helps if you build a personal relationship with them and try to meet them other than at unit meetings or Guide events:
Find out about each other’s talents and interests.
Plan together – each taking responsibility for some part of the evening/event/outing.
Evaluate together – after a meeting or event, talk it over. What went well or wrong? Why? What could be improved and what have we learnt from that?
Share responsibilities. Delegate whole activities or responsibilities, not just the running of games. Perhaps someone can take over the accounts, the camp fire or hike, organizing badge testers or training session.
Use the time when others are taking activities to speak to individual Guides or to observe the Patrols or individuals.
As leaders you will have to step back occasionally and evaluate the quality of Guiding going on in your unit. Aim to create a warm, friendly and businesslike atmosphere which allows room for each individual to develop her own abilities and talents.
Beatitudes For Leaders
Source: Woodbadge Listserv
Blessed are the leaders who have not sought the high place, but who have been drafted into service because of their ability and willingness to serve.
Blessed are the leaders who know where they are going, why they are going, and how to get there.
Blessed are the leaders who know how to lead without being dictatorial; true leaders are humble.
Blessed are the leaders who seek the best for those they serve.
Blessed are the leaders who lead for the good of the most concerned, and not for the personal gratification of their own ideas.
Blessed are the leaders who develop leaders while leading.
Blessed are the leaders who march with the group, interpret correctly the signs of the pathways that lead to success.
Blessed are the leaders who have their heads in the clouds but their feet on the ground.
Blessed are the leaders who consider leadership an opportunity for service.