Boy Scouts of America Reviews | Glassdoor

Boy Scouts of America Reviews

Updated November 8, 2017
68 reviews

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Boy Scouts of America Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh
Michael Surbaugh
4 Ratings

68 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Low pay and they make you feel guilty about having any type of life outside of work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America full-time

    Pros

    Don't require 8-5 in the office

    Cons

    Require nights and weekend work

    Advice to Management

    Appreciate your employees.


  2. Helpful (3)

    "The Organization that says “We Never Said That”"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - District Executive in Saint Charles, IL
    Former Employee - District Executive in Saint Charles, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America full-time

    Pros

    Work with youth to help them achieve merit badge goals. Meet business contacts in the community that will help you land new jobs.

    Cons

    Let’s just say they will lie to you in the interview and then say they never said it, even if you have proof. During the interview, they say you can make your own schedule and that it's very flexible (only work one weekend a month and a few nights during the week for the entire month). After a month into the job, it was every night and weekend. You will work 60+ hours during the week and if you have a family event on the weekend, they will take a full day of PTO from you. Even if you have to only be at the event for an hour. They say it’s flexible but have mandatory meetings at 8pm and 7am and throughout the day. Expect to answer your phone 24/7 with management or a volunteer.

    They demand you not only work for them, you must make Scouting the entirety of your life. You don't get to have a life outside of scouting. Many co-workers have been told by one person in management “you should get a divorce if that’s what it takes because you’re not making scouting your life.” They will say family will understand that you will miss weddings, birthdays, and anniversary’s. One day, I heard management having a bet on how many of their children birthday’s they have missed. This is very disheartening!

    Some volunteers will love you and some will always hate you no matter what you do to please them. I had one volunteer once say “if you don’t come to events, we will hate you and others call you every name in the naughty book”. I told my boss this and later my boss blamed me for all the troubles.

    When corporate comes from Texas or the Council Board of Directors come and visit they make it sound like everything is just peachy. Once they leave, management closes the door and blames all the problems on the staff. They are set in their old ways and will not change. The Scout Executive has said they are above the law and they can do anything they want.

    They will force you to call donors from 7am to 9pm even though this is only 10% of your monthly job. In the interview, they mention 75% of your job is working with units to help serve them better. But it’s actually 10% of your job and 90% Friends of Scouting (FOS). FOS is raising money to offset the council pay checks. They tell you to say the money offsets the units but that is a complete lie. I asked them numerous times to show where the money goes and they only say we will get back to you.

    Unless you are a lifelong scout, you will never fit into the culture. It feels like a cult - if you don't conform to all their norms you are not welcome. You are not welcome to step out of the lines.

    When I gave my 2 weeks’ notice, it was the best day to see the surprises on management faces. You think you will make a life at the BSA but once you work for this non-profit you will never want to work here again. This council threaten me months prior saying a lot of people want my job and they have people lined up for it. Funny thing is, there is a few vacancies and nobody has filled them.

    Each council is different but this one is very disgusting (St. Charles, IL). High turnover rate with district executives. Since I left, 3 others have left and others are on the verge.

    Advice to Management

    STOP only caring about your numbers and concentrate on your employees. The BSA is failing and numbers continue to go down and there is nothing that will fix this organization.

  3. Helpful (1)

    ""DISTRICT EXECUTIVE. TERRIBLE. OUT DATED. CONSERVATIVE""

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - District Executive
    Former Employee - District Executive
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America full-time

    Pros

    Get hired right out of college with good start out pay and benefits. Great resume builder. Volunteers will respect you even when you're half their age.

    Cons

    Don't wear Sperry dress shoes, grow a beard , or wear slim fit dress pants in the office. Seriously, I got verbal warnings and write ups for all three of these ludicrous "offenses". This is an extremely conservative work environment. If you do not physically meet their standards, you will get in trouble.

    Management uses laissez faire style of leadership. This is extremely challenging for a newly hired District Executive. They expect you to meet high goals with with no help from your direct supervisor.

    Expect to sacrifice weekend time and you'll spend many nights working.

    Overall, this is an extremly consertaive Christian environment. There is no room for progressive though Everything has to be done how its always been done. This was the worst job I have ever worked at. If you do not adhere to conservative or Christian values, you will dread this job.

    Advice to Management

    Writing someone up for wearing different dress shoes or having a groomed beard is not professional, it's targeting. Instead of bullying professionals, focus that energy into something more positive.


  4. "Do not work for BSA at camp"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Camp Safety Officer in San Antonio, TX
    Former Employee - Camp Safety Officer in San Antonio, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Work is simple at camp, you're doing the same things every week, and shifts at day camps end early evening

    Cons

    If you want money, don't work for BSA camps, skipped me out on over 600$ as well as other staffers, (camps cost anywhere from 150-400$ per person to attend) including others from different summer camps, as well as most jobs pay basic minimum wage or only a dollar or two higher. No staff accommodations/bonuses, and the sign in system was a mess.

    Advice to Management

    Unbelievable that such a big company can have such an atrocious budget/priories.


  5. Helpful (2)

    "It's the culture stupid"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Irving, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Irving, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    If you were a former Boy Scout you might be able to abide the culture.

    Cons

    Terrible closed culture. Very male centric and not a friendly place for minorities. Unless you are a life long scout, you will never fit into the culture. It feels like a cult - if you don't conform to all their norms you are not welcome. You are not welcome to step out of the lines.

    Advice to Management

    Culture is important in an organization and the culture at BSA is toxic. Working there was one of the most stifling experiences of my life. The overt racism and misogyny was throughout the organization and it was pushed under the rug and disregarded. Let some light into that place. Get the right people in the right positions, not just old boy scouts that have never worked anywhere else.


  6. "District Executive & Camp Director"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - District Manager in Orono, ME
    Current Employee - District Manager in Orono, ME
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at Boy Scouts of America full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    I have the opportunity to interact with numerous people from all walks of life.

    Cons

    Hours required to complete job.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Practically Illegal Pay"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Summer Camp Counselor/Area Director in Waverly, IA
    Former Contractor - Summer Camp Counselor/Area Director in Waverly, IA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America as a contractor (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Great Atmosphere, job experience, and fun.

    Cons

    Pay is bottom of the bucket (100$-150$ per week), almost no money given to camp management for repairs or improvement, they treat you like full-time employees on a 24/7 contract but expect you to treat it like your a reimbursed volunteer.

    Advice to Management

    Pay your employees a real wage, and actually invest in your assests.

  8. Helpful (5)

    "Run Run as fast as you can! The ship is sinking!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - District Executive in Raleigh, NC
    Former Employee - District Executive in Raleigh, NC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The volunteers are awesome people. That's the sad part about it. They are actually the backbone of this organization. The kids are amazing. Great networking with community and business leaders.

    Cons

    Very little help from management. You'll work extremely long hours especially during fall recruitment. They will lure you in by telling you that you make your own schedule and that it's very flexible but don't get it twisted, nothing is what seems at first. Business wise, the ship is sinking. The business model is broken and management is so busy trying to save their own cushy jobs, that they won't listen to any innovation. They will force you to milk your donors and you will end up looking like the leech in the end. If you are married or have a life in general, don't take this job. I repeat, don't do it! I read the reviews after handing in my two week notice to my last job and trust me, I was sick for a week. They basically will have you working a 6 figure job for 35-38k a year. They are passive aggressive and very condescending. If you don't take heed to this advice, like me, you'll end up leaving a similar review.

    Advice to Management

    Find new careers. On the business side, this organization won't survive. Your model is screwed and you haven't adapted quick enough to change in order to meet the needs of this new demographic. Relying on donors to float your operational costs is a business model that would've worked in the pre-2000's. You'll need some cash-flow generating businesses in order to help sustain your non-profit endeavors. Relying on grants and people barely making ends meat is a lazy and negligent asproach to survival. You must become proactive and innovate. You're style is stale and pretty soon the executive side will be handled mostly online while the volunteers run he organization. BSA has grown too top heavy to survive in the new economy.


  9. Helpful (2)

    "Quick to fire good workers and bashes them when references call"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cleveland, OH
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Cleveland, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America full-time

    Pros

    Some of the families and local businesses were great to work with.

    Cons

    Management, pay, work hours,asking volunteers for too much, popcorn prices too high, makes staff go camping along with reg office responsibilities, doesn't allow you to succeeded because of crazy recruiting and fundraising goals, saw good employees leave because they weren't appreciate by managment

    Advice to Management

    Get new management


  10. Helpful (5)

    "Unit Service Executive"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Unit Service Executive in Midland, MI
    Former Employee - Unit Service Executive in Midland, MI
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Boy Scouts of America full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Volunteers are mostly welcoming and very nice. Opens the door to network with some very influential community leaders. Benefits are decent if you do not have a family to add on - has a pension but you cannot participate for at least 1 year and then it takes quite a bit of time to vest.

    Cons

    You are required to buy your own Class A Uniform (which is over $100). You are required to give to their annual giving campaign (at least $250) - which you make very little in this job. Management does not care about employees. Vacation and holiday time is not respected and very scarce - my boss e-mailed and texted me on Thanksgiving Day requesting a report which he knew he needed weeks prior to that point. Expect to work 60+ hours a week and most evenings and weekends. They will tell you in the interview that it is occasional nights and weekends - it is more like MOST. If you have a family or would like a social life absolutely do not work here. Extremely unprofessional. To top everything off - I gave notice that I was looking for a new job, and then put in a three week written notice so that they wouldn't be left hanging - they did not accept my notice and instead made my last day effective three days after I turned in notice, leaving me without health insurance for a month.

    Advice to Management

    You will have continuous turnover until you learn how to treat employees and understand that you cannot expect people to work the amount of hours required for little pay and expect them to stick around. Be careful which bridges you burn - relationships are important especially in small towns and treating your employees poorly does not bode well for future donors and volunteers.


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