Patrol Leader Responsibilities
- Represent your patrol at all patrol leaders’ council meetings.
- Prepare the patrol to participate in all troop activities
- Go on the majority of camping trips, and attend most all scout meetings. See Patrol Campout Planner & Duty Roster
- Obtain an up-to-date list of patrol members and their contact information.
- “Calldowns” Serve as communications link between the SPL (or scout in charge of trip) and the patrol members when it is necessary to do calldowns, usually on short notice. Be diligent in trying to contact all scouts in your patrol — call at least once daily until a response is received. Report back to the SPL or scout-in-charge DAILY until all info has been obtained and communicated.
- Familiarize yourself with the advancement position of all members, especially those working on Tenderfoot, 2nd and 1st class. Help such members figure out when and how to do next steps. Ask them often if you can help get them passed on the next element(s).
- Take responsibility for the completeness and cleanliness of your patrol camping box, by reviewing the contents of the box after each use. Coordinate with QM and the trip participants on this task.
Ten Tips for Being a Good Patrol Leader
Keep Your Word. Don’t make promises you can’t keep.
Be Fair to All. A good leader shows no favorites. Don’t allow friendships to keep you from being fair to all members of your patrol. Know who likes to do what, and assign duties to patrol members by what they like to do.
Be a Good Communicator. You don’t need a commanding voice to be a good leader, but you must be willing to step out front with an effective “Let’s go.” A good leader knows how to get and give information so that everyone understands what’s going on.
Be Flexible. Everything doesn’t always go as planned. Be prepared to shift to “plan B” when “plan A” doesn’t work.
Be Organized. The time you spend planning will be repaid many times over. At patrol meetings, record who agrees to do each task, and fill out the duty roster before going camping.
Delegate. Some leaders assume that the job will not get done unless they do it themselves. Most people like to be challenged with a task. Empower your patrol members to do things they have never tried.
Set an Example. The most important thing you can do is lead by example. Whatever you do, your patrol members are likely to do the same. A cheerful attitude can keep everyone’s spirits up.
Be Consistent. Nothing is more confusing than a leader who is one way one moment and another way a short time later. If your patrol knows what to expect from you, they will more likely respond positively to your leadership.
Give Praise. The best way to get credit is to give it away. Often a “Nice job” is all the praise necessary to make a Scout feel he is contributing to the efforts of the patrol.
Ask for Help. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for help. You have many resources at your disposal. When confronted with a situation you don’t know how to handle, ask someone with more experience for some advice and direction.