Subtlety, ah subtlety. One of the difficulties with dealing with self proclaimed experts who aren’t is that they will never admit defeat in a rational argument. To wit, after you’ve invalidated points a,b,c, and d they come up with a new bogus point e, which is validated by their years of (in)experience.
One important role of being a committee chair is to ensure that issues get dealt with quickly and professionally, but it takes both parties agreeing to be professional.
You can’t fight fire with fire. You fight fire with water (or foam or CO2 or liquid nitrogen (pretty cool to watch) or even a rocket engine or explosive).
I realized that I could as my particular set of blowhards to advise me, hypothetically as it were (I think they understand hypothetically (well, I hope they understand it)), before we discuss the serious issue, about what to do if:
- Someone wanted to tear the organization (troop in this case, including firing or reprimanding an excellent scoutmaster) apart because of a perceived problem and
- Their proposed solution was against the organizations policies (in this case I’d read the BSA policy guide and checked with Nationally prominent, district level, other troop leaders and even one of my own old scoutmasters and received unanimous “say what?” negative responses. The particular ‘solutions’ would have violated both advancement and youth protection policies) and
- They wouldn’t accept this answer, and
- Reliable information showed that the original problem did not really exist.
So, hypothetically, what should I do with that person? Do we still need to discuss the issue?
While my most recent need for this has been with the scouts, I’ve run into similar problems on faculty committees so it isn’t unique to that domain.
I feel like I’m channeling Sir Humphrey in “yes minister” or one of the characters in Mark Twain’s “innocents abroad”. I’ll let you know if I need to use this and if it works.
quote of the day.
There’s nothing like ‘Being Prepared’ is there, for what might seem possible, even if it may not seem probable.