by Truman Grace
Congratulations! You’re now a leader in the Order of the Arrow having just won your election. But what are the first steps you take in your new position of responsibility? OA leadership is complex, but this article is here to get you started
Step 1: Get in Contact
This is the first and most important step, and you should begin with your adviser. Your adviser is an adult with experience in the skills required for your position. It is important to build a strong relationship with your adviser as you will work with them throughout your term and use them as a resource for accomplishing your goals.
You also want to get in contact with your fellow officers. You want to make sure you and your fellow officers are on the same page so you can work together on each other’s goals and improve the chapter or lodge. You could set up a group chat for easy and reliable communication.
The other person you should contact is those who have previously held your position. Otherwise known as a “has been.” These Arrowmen have been through your exact situation and certainly have some advice and tips to give you for your term.
Step 2: Define your Goals
You may have determined some goals prior to your election that you stated in your speech. It is important to make a list of these goals and any more you come up with so that you can keep track of your accomplishments. You should show this list to members of your chapter or lodge. This is so they can get involved with things you need assistance with.
Examples of goals include things like:
- At least 3 service projects during the year
- Building a Comms team
- Making Chapter Merchandise
- Begin a new award program
- Maintain a strong ceremonies team
Step 3: Get in a Routine
This is the step where you make sure you have a grasp on the roles and responsibilities of your position. You should use your adviser to make sure you know what exactly you need to do for each of these roles and get into a schedule if needed. Use calendars and reminders to stay organized and on track. Other programs I would recommend for Order of the Arrow projects are Google Drive/Onedrive and Trello. These are great tools for organizing and tracking progress.
Step 4: Represent well
You are now a representative of the Order and of Scouting. Make sure you use this position responsibly. Make good decisions and remember that this is a youth organization. Show up on time, make sure your uniform is worn correctly, and as you’ve heard many times, abide by the Scout Oath and Law.
Step 5: Show off!
While you should keep it humble, don’t hide the work you do for the OA, it is important that Arrowmen are kept up to date with new updates and improvements made in our chapters and lodges. Not only does this build a sense of pride in the OA, but it could motivate more Arrowmen to run for positions to continue the amazing work you’ve accomplished.
I hope you enjoy your time as a leader in our organization. You’ve taken on an important role and are continuing the tradition of strong leadership in scouting. I look forward to seeing what you accomplish!