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BoR like a job interview

This is surely a hot button topic. I can say that my first BoR as a scout I was told to think of them as practice for a job interview. I also recall being sent out and starting over again. My last BoR with the troop was for Eagle ahead of district (Eagles faced troop and district Boards in my area and time). I was complimented in how much I had improved and assured that I would do well in job interviews.

The thing is that I have always done well on job interviews once even staying for an interview in a job I was not qualified for. One member said he wanted to find some way to qualify me as he was impressed and sure I could learn the job. Another time I was told I was granted the interview only because he saw that I am an Eagle.

I will also say that at this stage in my life I look for an exit for any interview which seems adversarial. When such has resulted in a job offer, the job wasn’t a good place to work for me. (I realize others may have a different view.) I can also say that my experiences in scouts has affected me when I was on the other side helping conduct an interview.


I joked with a fellow ASM last night, as we discussed the nature of boards of review, that internet is replete with volunteer discussions about the nature of boards of review and scoutmaster conferences. And here we are.

I imagine that BoRs can be good practice for job interviews given their similar structures. One person being interviewed by a group of people for a step up.

Here’s my usual contribution to the discussion: I would hope that committee members conducting boards of review keep the guide to advancement in mind and resist testing or retesting the scout. Those conducting the review instead should take advantage of the opportunity to learn scout’s thoughts about the program being delivered.

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I do agree that BoRs simulate job interviews. It’s on the scouts honor to reflect on his/her scouting experience to the board. That’s really not much different than what you can get from an interview candidate.

The BoR has an advantage in that they’ve appointed the reference (the SM) and have probably seen the scout in action.

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The thing is that on posts regarding this a back and forth regularly seems to pop up on this topic (which is always secondary to the original topic). There are certainly differences, though honestly, perhaps more job interviews should be conducted like a BoR. I actually find it laughable the way many people think they know how to get a real feel for a jab candidate in less time than a first date.

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One thing that I hope scouts learn BoRs and SMCs is how to provide a forthright assessment of themselves, their patrol and troop, and the program as a whole. You know that’s happening when you start to have scouts saying things like, “Hey, can we go back to [location of near disastrous scouting event], only, maybe not nearly die this time?” or “I really wish I could do [requirement that got signed off hastily] better. Can we have an event that makes us practice that?”


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