Journey to Excellence. Part 1

Now before I even get started on this.. let me tell you that as much as I like patches.. this is NOT about a little patch.  This is about measuring success.  In the world that I live in, working for the Big Brown, I am totally in tuned to everything being measured.  I do believe in measuring, it gives us good solid data that we can learn from and grow.  When we measure things based on a standard, we can see where we are and where we need to go in order to be successful.
Here is the beauty.  In most cases in life, we get to decide what success looks like.  And so we get to determine what that measurement is.
Quality Unit was a program that, well kinda measured what a unit was doing.  I say kinda, because at the end of the day.. if you had a pulse, went on a few camp outs, recruited a Scout or two (read held a cross over ceremony) and got your charter turned in.. you were a quality unit.  I saw units in our district that got Quality unit and then did not recharter the following year.  HUH?  How is that possible.  Quality unit one year and dust the next.. errrr… something was wrong with this.
The Centennial Quality unit, was not much better.  The same old take on Quality unit, but cooler patches.
Now we are heading down the path to the Journey to Excellence.  This program is actually performance based and not just numbers.  Where the old programs of Quality Unit measured a process.. the Journey to excellence (JTE) measures the performance of a unit.  NOW STOP READING HERE if you are afraid of delivering a good Scouting program to your Scouts.
Over the next couple posts I am going to share and discuss the Journey to Excellence program as outlined and defined by the Boy Scouts of America.
There are three levels of levels of performance in the JTE.. Bronze, Silver, and of course Gold.  It is the unit that will decide at what level they have performed based on real numbers and expectations set out in their annual plan.
The JTE will ask of units to actually look at certain areas of their program and improve on them.  The beauty of the program is that measured success can be tracked all year long and point values are attached to the areas of concern.  It is a total score at the end of the year that will determine your success.. falling short in one area can easily be over come by larger success in others.  But the point is that rather than a simple sheet filled out at recharter, the JTE is a tool that a unit can use to measure and track success all year long.
There are 13 individual criteria that is measured in the JTE. For a Boy Scout Troop they are:  Advancement, Retention, Building Boy Scouting, Trained leadership, short term camping, Long term camping, Patrol method, Service projects, Webelos to Scout transition, Budget, Courts of Honor/ Parent meetings, Reregister on time, and a final annual assessment.
I will go into all of these in greater detail in the next few posts.
Here is the bottom line.  If you have no goals or a plan then you will not improve.  There is not a unit out there that is perfect in every way, and the JTE is a tool that will move you to greater success.  Building your Scouting program is important, not only for your unit, but for Scouting in general.
I like the new JTE program, and I hope I can share some information here to help you achieve that success your unit deserves.
Have a Great Scouting Day!


  1. OK, I am looking forward to these posts.

    I will keep an open mind, but once again we are number crunching a Youth Program. Looking at the paperwork on we are a Gold JTE Unit. And that is just with a brief glance and quick calculations…

    Sorry /closedmindedness Ears are OPEN 🙂


  2. JTE seems more about the needs of the Council bureaucracy to look busy than anything that will help Boys. Maybe it helps larger units, and I’m sure it helps sell the program to funders. In our small troop success is more about Quality than Quantity, and you can not measure and sell that.


  3. Still don’t know how I feel about the program because for the numbers in my head, my Team does horribly compared to when we were doing the Quality Unit Award.

    Chad The Varsity Coach


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