Some of the principles that leaders need to know to be effective are:
Honesty. The Leader must always be honest in everything he does. The problems with dishonesty are numerous, but when it comes to youth, they will eventually get caught up in dishonesty and will be called on it. While it won’t seem to matter, that chipping away at honesty will break down credibility, and set the Scout up with a bad habit he will have trouble breaking in the long run.
The Leader must be a good example. In my Troop we ask that all leaders wear the Scout uniform properly. And without going into the uniform discussion, let me just say that you are either in the full uniform or you are not in uniform. While the uniform is not required in the BSA, it is a method and should be worn properly.. ok.. off the soap box.
We ask that everyone that is in a leadership position wear the uniform properly. From the troop Liberian to the Scoutmaster we wear the uniform to demonstrate a good example.
This example extends to behavior, skills, and attitudes. The leader must demonstrate a good example living the Scout Oath and Law for others to follow.
A leader must be willing to learn. Learning is a skill the leader must embrace. It is tough to ask the boys to learn.. after all they sit in class all day, but reinforcing the idea that what they are learning in Scouts is fun and leads to adventure, that the Scouts are allowed to set the environment for the learning instead of having a bunch of adults tell them what they are going to do… this seems to work when the boy led troop is running well.
The leader is a team builder. Leading his team to an understanding that working together they can accomplish anything, soon the team will develop spirit and camaraderie. They become a high performance team.
The Leader is a communicator. He needs to be able to communicate effectively enough to accomplish any task. Whether that is on the phone, in person, via email, the leader needs to understand the basics of communication and work to send his message well enough to provide Purpose, Direction, and the motivation needed to lead his team.
And to take a page from the NYLT. The Leader must BE-KNOW- and DO.
He must be an example, know the skills necessary to teach, coach, and in some cases mentor, and Do the right thing always.
Have a Great Scouting Day!