Scout Camp: Leadership Among Boys

By | July 19, 2019

[July 19, 2019]  This article is the second in a short series on leadership lessons from a Scout Camp.  Back on June 22nd, I asked six basic questions [see link here].  Our Scout Camp has gone through several stages of learning; much of it having to do with the leader psychology of young boys.

One question I raised was, “When boys learn leadership, can it be fun?”  The answer is an emphatic “yes.”  In fact, if there is no “fun” or some entertainment value, then none of them would be willing to step into a leadership position.  All our boys (those with at least one year in the program) used their skills to good affect.  For example, we had a good time learning safety through funny stories of the past.

Another question was, “Are boys really different today than boys of my time?”  The short answer is “no”; there is really no difference in things tat matter the most.  For example, new Boy Scout leaders (mostly aged 14 and 15 year old’s) needed extra mentoring and they readily accepted it.  Other than some different games and television shows, their discussions were no different than mine.  I will note, however, I believe today’s young boys have a greater exposure to leaders directly and are, overall, smarter than my generation.

In our Boy Scout troop, our philosophy is mostly hands-off and the boys run the troop.  Adult leaders are there to ensure safety is not bypassed or a critical deadline is not missed.  We also offer lots of positive reinforcement to the mentoring.  How to handle a homesick 11-year-old is a challenge for any of us but the young scout leaders are doing a good job of it.

More to follow later this coming week.  I’ll post a few more articles answering basic questions and on my general observations.

Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I'm Doug and I provide at least one article every day on some leadership topic. I welcome comments and also guests who would like to write an article. Thanks for reading my blog.

24 thoughts on “Scout Camp: Leadership Among Boys

  1. Janna Faulkner

    I really enjoyed this article and your short series on experiences from Scout Camp. Thank you, Gen. Satterfield. I’m looking forward to more. This reminds me of my brother who was a boy scout for many years and he regularly told me about how much fun he had and how it made him a better man.

    1. Kenny Foster

      I see he also posted another one today (July 21st). Another good read.

  2. Eva Easterbrook

    I’ll be specially interested in what you discovered about girls in the Boy Scouts. I’ve heard a mixed bag of reviews. Several commentators have said the girls themselves are behaving and learning but that their adult leaders are poorly representing themselves.

    1. Lynn Pitts

      Eva, I heard the same mixed bag of information. Those volunteer women who are helping their girl troops had best tread lightly, else they will turn off the adult men and make a bad impression on them and our society. I’m interested in what Gen. Satterfield’s observations are about this same issue.

  3. Greg Heyman

    Gen. Satterfield, I look forward to the next few articles about boy leadership; what you learned and what the boys learned. Good stuff in today’s article but I’m sure there is so much more for you to say. Keep up the great work with those who will soon be our leaders.

    1. Nick Lighthouse

      Yes, more to come as Gen. Satterfield noted. I too look forward to it and will enjoy them, I’m sure.

    2. Len Jakosky

      Good comment. I have my wife read it too and she’s enjoyed what you’ve written so far. Big supporter and fan of this series and Gen Satterfield.

  4. The Kid 1945

    Another great article. Also, thanks for helping out our young men who will the next leaders of our society.

  5. Army Captain

    Boys who have been in scouting historically perform better in the US military. That is the observation of most of us here and so, well done!

    1. Tony B. Custer

      Good to hear this. Unfortunately, I do believe that the numbers of boys in scouting is in decline.

      1. Harry B. Donner

        Sad but true. Lots of the decline can be attributed to the anti-American leftists who populate our colleges. Fortunately, there are still millions of volunteers across the nation who are willing to step over these embeciles and do the right thing for our youth.

        1. Otto Z. Zuckermann

          Harry, I think you are right on target with this comment. Anyone who disagrees has blinders on and is unwilling to THINK. Much appreciated your analysis today.

    2. Xerxes I

      Thank you, Army Captain for that observation and also for making us aware of the greater possibilities that scouting provides our youth.

  6. Roger Yellowmule

    Great update, Gen. Satterfield. Thank you. I’m really enjoying your series on boy leadership.

    1. Georgie B.

      Concur. 🙂
      Thank you Roger for your input here. I also greatly enjoy all that Gen. Satterfield writes and his entertaining style.

      1. Eric Coda

        Spot on comment, Georgie. We all love this website and wish there were more articles daily.


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