EDITORS NOTE – Here’s a something that should be in our minds every time we interact with our Scouts. I am often focused on problems and missing opportunities to support them positively.
We all have a memory of a time when we were criticized. Do you remember a time when you were praised? I bet the negative comments stick in your mind.
A blog post by Bob Sutton, a management professor at Stanford University, points out that negative interactions are far more powerful than positive ones. Careful academic studies show that there must be five positive interactions for each negative one or the relationship will fail. Five to one is a lot, and that is just to break even!
How often do we do this with our Scouts? Do we notice five well-tied knots for each mistake? Do the Patrol Leaders comment on well-washed dishes and not just the dirty ones?
How about the Scouts who leave the troop, have they been told how well they are doing? If it wasn’t five to one, it should not be a surprise that the relationship with the troop failed.
So make this your Good Turn for a few days, five to one, with every one you meet, and no fake compliments. Look for true good things in every person. Maybe throw in a few extra to make up for the rest of their day.