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Win All You Can


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#21 boomerscout

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Posted 19 July 2009 - 03:55 PM

Scoutleader: I agree with all your sentences except the third. The wealth of this nation seems to have shrunk while its supply of money has increased. I sure don't have any answers.
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#22 John-in-KC

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Posted 19 July 2009 - 05:35 PM

From my experience, playing a "Hobson's Choice" or "Monte Carlo" game is rarely a wise thing to do without well-formed teams, and without superior game leaders and observers. We plowed this ground before a couple years ago. I cannot find the threads, but they are out there. xl, you're being asked about your experience because frankly, many of us wonder about your credibility. Most of us enjoyed our WB course, are proud of the patrols we're linked to, and have strong Scouting friendships as a result. I personally do not like the game because we've just spent a couple days forming Patrols and teaching cooperation (with a bit of competition), then we tear that down and go for the jugular in the game. John I used to be an Owl C-40-05
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#23 ChaiAdventure

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Posted 19 July 2009 - 08:22 PM

I have to agree with John. My course had so much good in it, and I made so many bonds for life, that I could not imagine one simple event having enough of an impact to cause such a visceral reactions as yours. We played the game, got the concept, and moved on. I suggest the same for you.... It is not about a game at WB, it is about molding youth to be good citizens, make ethical decisions and to have them live their lives by the Scout Oath and Law...
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#24 theysawyoucomin'

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Posted 19 July 2009 - 11:12 PM

X, There is not a Woodbadger alive that will EVER forget that game. Mention win all you can to anybody that has played they are not going to forget the lesson or the moral. I just think you should reserve the details for those going to the course, there's no secrets but we had one person in my Patrol that talked about a lot of phases of the course. I don't wsnt to know how the movie ends while I'm watching it. Titanic is and exception also and WW2 movie. I know Hitler dies in the end.
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#25 dg98adams

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 07:59 AM

uz2bnowl, I know I posted that I didn't "get" the game...and certainly did not remember any Moral or Reason to play it. I was a WB participant and on staff. IMHO, the game is less than useful... it's forgettable.
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#26 Vicki

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 09:51 AM

Wood Badge experiences differ - I can tell you that half of the troop figured out what was going on in my course. We Bears were sitting in the back, of course, and had the opportunity to observe how odd this appeared and decided this wasn't a hill worth taking. Having had some management courses as well as an Outward Bound type experience, I mused, "what doesn't fit here"? With the questioning process started it was short work to get to the answer and pass it around. Wood Badge was a blast for me - both as a participant and a staffer. The other half of the troop didn't get it and refused to get it - one patrol member got so mad she ripped up the cards and threw them at the rest of her patrol. That patrol, and her, are now a Wood Badge horror story. Wood Badge was not fun for them. As far as economics is concerned, read less Keynes and more Adam Smith, Friedrich Hayek, and Milton Friedman. Wealth is NOT a zero-sum game, with a "set amount" available in the world. Vicki
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#27 gcnphkr

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 10:57 AM

I disliked the game, although complaining about the economy of the game is silly. It is a game, not a model of the real world. My problem was that it did not really teach what it claimed. The patrol with the most points tends to be the patrol that went along most of the time but which would occasionally stab the others. This is what it really taught: "Be good most of the time and you can get away with screwing others now and then."
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#28 Fester281

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Posted 29 July 2009 - 11:05 PM

Always wondered why the game wasn't set up as pairs of two groups, A vs B and C vs D, with cooperate/don't divvied up secretly between the two. That way, a better comparison could be made. Haven't done WB yet, but encountered the game elsewhere. Took me about 5 minutes to figure it out. Spent half the remaining time watching to see when others would "get it", and the other half wondering if the few remaining would ever get it at all. Applicable? Yes. I've told crossover Webelos, "Hey look, we really don't have the equipment and adult help to do some of the things that you're all excited about doing. But, check out the troop over at Saint Velcro; you'll find a dozen kids over there who LIVE what you want to do." I don't recall many kids being sent by the St Velcro crowd over to US, but it doesn't matter. We do no favors to a kid by putting him in an unhappy, ill-fitting situation just to pump up our numbers, and one more happy Scout making it down the trail ups the final score for everyone.
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#29 Greg Nelson

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Posted 30 July 2009 - 02:06 AM

Wealth can't be created???? You're joking, right? What did Bill Gates do? Did he go out and mine $30 billion worth of gold? Did Henry Ford rob banks to make his vast fortune? Let's tie this in to two of the most popular starter merit badges - Leatherwork and Basketry. Wind the clock back 100,000 years to two guys - Hunter and Gatherer. Hunter kills animals and makes blankets and pelts. Gatherer takes reeds and weaves baskets and chairs. By trading with each other, both Hunter and Gatherer have access to the goods the other can produce. If Hunter goes and kills Gatherer, he can take Gatherer's store of goods, but will lose access to the continued stream of wealth Gatherer will produce in the future. Scale this up times a billion with millions of possible occupations, and you have today's society. Every morning you or I wake up is another opportunity to create wealth out of the efforts of our minds and/or bodies.
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#30 scoutldr

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Posted 30 July 2009 - 08:09 AM

Bill Gates used a raw material...his brain. Intellectual capital is a raw material too. The point is, he didn't sit around and wait for the Govt to dump money in his lap...he got off his duff, teamed up with Ballmer and developed a product. As did Jobs and Wozniak. And if Hunter had sat in his cave and waited for a Mammoth to throw itself on the fire, none of us would be here. Survival requires individual effort, not handouts.
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#31 asmt530

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Posted 23 October 2009 - 10:29 AM

You miss the whole point of the game... You can be greedy in life or not. You can created win-win situations so that everyone wins. Our class had 8 patrols and 7 members in each. If everyone would have trusted the other the entire room would have collectively made $64,000 dollars and everyone would have won. I have taught this exercise in team building and self-help type settings. The BSA calls it the game of life but they do not explain the meaning.....you re to reflect and find the meaning yourself. The answer is that "The way you play the game is the way you play your life." Think about it....think about the way you played the game. John Denver wrote a song about this game after he played it at the same place I once played it. It's called "It's About Time". It's a full moon over India and Ghandii lives again.....who's to say you have to lose for someone else to win. In the eyes of all the people the look is much the same....for the first is just the last one when you play a deadly game. Take from it what you will but look back and examine the way you felt and reacted while you played. Better yet, are you trying to justify the way the played it?
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#32 AwHeck

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Posted 23 October 2009 - 09:09 PM

It sounds like some of you didn't get the debriefing after the game. If you don't debrief, discuss how the game went and how that applies in life, what was the point?
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#33 silasm

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 06:35 PM

We did a debrief in my course, but I wasn't a fan of the direction it took. Rather then the lessons that REALLY WERE relevant to this type of game: "How do you establish trust and cooperation between competing groups?" "How is the Scouting organization or ANY non-profit organization different from for-profit business"? Instead, the discussion was focused on the Scout Oath and Law and how the competition made us feel. But it was an inter-patrol competition! Does this mean out patrol should throw the rest of the competitions in order to be "good scouts"? I'm not sure our staff got it. Or maybe they were religiously following the syllabus, I don't know. In my opinion, it should have been tied back to a real example where Scouting differs from competition and capitalism. For example: "A benefactor offers your troop $700 OR he will split $1000 between two troops. What do you do? How does that differ from what we do in the business world?"
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#34 John-in-KC

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 07:02 PM

As I recall, the game is presented later in the evening on Day 2. Folks are tired, and the added value of the game, as we've seen anecdotally, can go South really fast. It's an easy game to lose control of... as we've heard in other threads, to the point of having participants consider leaving the course ... is this game really worth the learning value?
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#35 emb021

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Posted 25 October 2009 - 09:07 PM

"But it was an inter-patrol competition!" No, you assumed it was an inter-patrol competition. Part of the lesson of the game was to try to get across that each 'patrol' (could be any subgroup in any organization) is just part of a larger organization. When the different groups within a larger org are competing with one another (or in-fighting) the WHOLE org loses. "WIN ALL YOU CAN" is also "YOU ALL CAN WIN", which was a point make clearer in the NLS-version of the game.
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#36 John-in-KC

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 11:53 PM

Part of the lesson of the game was to try to get across that each 'patrol' (could be any subgroup in any organization) is just part of a larger organization. When the different groups within a larger org are competing with one another (or in-fighting) the WHOLE org loses. Which is the root problem of the game. The game comes at the end of 2 days of pushing the major importance of the sub-unit (in this case, Patrol) on the learners. Then, on a dime, without preparation, and under some degree of tiredness, the focus of the learners is changed without warning. Heck, right before WAUC is Scouting Jeopardy, which IS an inter-patrol competition. I've done an awful lot of leadership psych and team-building in the past 30 years. Multi-echelon training and team-building is one of the harder skillsets for a trainer to master. It involves being able to take the whole apart and look at the contribution of each element to the whole. It also involves making sure each element knows how the others contribute to its own success. That's what I see missing from WAUC: No one has the rose to make sure each element knows how the others contribute to its own success, and this "game" is a bloody failure of an attempt. That we hear anecdotes of failure is enough for me to say... discard this piece of excrement from the curriculum!
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#37 silasm

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Posted 27 October 2009 - 01:33 AM

"Part of the lesson of the game was to try to get across that each 'patrol' (could be any subgroup in any organization) is just part of a larger organization. When the different groups within a larger org are competing with one another (or in-fighting) the WHOLE org loses." Yeah, I get that. To a anyone familiar with the concepts of a non-zero-sum game and the Prisoner's Dilemma, it was immediately obvious the outcome that was hoped for. I was expecting (and looking forward to) a discussion of how groups can establish trust in the absence of adequate communication or about optimizing group benefit by looking at the "bigger picture". The staffer leading the game had us recite the Scout Oath and Law before the last round. Is that meant to imply that playing to win for our patrol was inconsistent with Scouting ethics? Were we supposed to feel bad for assuming that this was another patrol competition, when they had been encouraging patrol competition all day? That seems like training a puppy to roll over and then punishing when he starts to obey! There could have been valid discussion about "trust" or "identifying what the 'you' in 'Win all you can' meant" or "the virtues of cooperation versus competition". Instead, we discussed how the game made us feel. Well... it made a lot of people feel like the above mentioned puppy. We were trying to please our leaders by doing what we had been trained to do... and then had our noses rubbed in it. Unlike John-in-KC, I don't necessarily think the game needs to be scrapped but I think the right lessons need to be derived from it. I'm not sure if it was a failure in leadership or a failure in the curriculum. Or, I guess it could be a failure on my part to "get it"; maybe the rest of the troop came away with a valuable lesson. I just came away from that session disappointed.
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#38 Vicki

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Posted 27 October 2009 - 08:59 AM

To elaborate on my earlier post - I "got it," passed it along to my fellow Bears, we passed it upline, and I still came away feeling used, especially after observing the other half of the troop that didn't listen and didn't "get it." Left me a little bit more cynical than when I started (and I started out pretty cynical - I learned "trust no one" at my daddy's knee, with my mother's milk - pick your metaphor). As a staffer, that feeling was only magnified as I watched another troop go through the same thing (although nobody "got it" and nobody had the really extreme reactions as happened in my original troop). It either needs to be completely revamped or done away with. Vicki(This message has been edited by Vicki)
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#39 emb021

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Posted 27 October 2009 - 02:25 PM

"I don't necessarily think the game needs to be scrapped but I think the right lessons need to be derived from it. I'm not sure if it was a failure in leadership or a failure in the curriculum." Kind of my feeling. As noted, my first exposure to the game was as a participant in NLS. I thought it was well run, but then I know the staff for NLS spends about a week learning the course. I could tell that if the staff don't run the game right, there can be problems. Then, when I staffed WB, I discovered we were going to do the game. I was a bit concerned as how they were running the game didn't match with how I saw it at NLS, and I felt it wouldn't go as well. The response I got was 'this is how we were told to run it at WB CDC', so I kept my mouth shut. We had problems with the game, and I didn't know if the issues were how WB does it compared to NLS, or how well they prepare the CDs or staff to run the game. Later, I found my Fraternity had incorporated a version into our course on conflict resolution. Having seen the game go well and not so well, and IMO, the preparation of the staff was to me a vital element in its success, I was a little leary. One things that is different is that we actually don't split the group up into the team for the game UNTIL the game, so the participants are organized into patrol-size groups during the course. This avoids the built-in idea of patrol competition that can exist in WB. I have seen it done 2 now in this course, and overall they've gone well. I think is due in part to the absense of the use of groups thru the course. FWIW, we call it the 'red/green' game, and dispence with the "win all you can" terminology. I don't know the ultimate basis for the game, but here is one website explaining it: http://peacebuilding...Win_All_You_Can Note that the purpose is "To explore how sub-groups in a larger team can balance their desire to win more as a sub-group with their desire to win as a team". This, to me, is the point that is too often lost or not clear in the de-brief.
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#40 John-in-KC

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Posted 27 October 2009 - 07:59 PM

Note that the purpose is "To explore how sub-groups in a larger team can balance their desire to win more as a sub-group with their desire to win as a team". This, to me, is the point that is too often lost or not clear in the de-brief. There is a significant breakdown between other groups and Scouting right here. In Scouting, we're trying to emphasize the bonds of the Patrol. We create a miniature representative democracy, and empower the PL to represent the other 7 at PLC meetings. There, the PL is looking somewhat out for the interests of the Troop, but must balance the Troop decision with what is good for his Patrol. Only the SPL and ASPLs among elected leaders of the Troop are looking out for the troop as a whole. That's where dilemma games like this break down for Scouting. The best of the order is not necessarily what the good of the subunit needs. Frankly, a lot of the time a "satisficing" position is as good as it gets (that's a win some lose some/win some lose some result set). The game supports neither the structure nor the dynamic of a healthy, functioning Troop.
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