I’m going to mention a few things that all have something in common. When you think you know what that common theme is, raise your hand.
– a marathon
– interstate truckers
– a bike race
– a flock of geese
– a NASCAR race
Each of these use ‘drafting’ to decrease the effort required to achieve a goal. Trucks, cars, bikes, runners all benefit from following closely behind someone else that is cutting through the wind resistance. In a road bicycle race, the lead rider in a pack uses over 30% more effort than those behind. Truckers draft to conserve fuel and increase profits.
The downside is that the lead rider gets tired before the rest. If they continue to follow the tired leader, the entire group slows down. To keep up the speed, the leader falls off the point when he tires and the next in line takes over with a reserve of power to keep up the speed.
The followers need to trust the leader to lead in the right direction. They also need to recognize when the leader is getting tired and step up to take the lead.
Your Patrol Leaders serve for 6 months at a time. While they are leading, the rest of you get to draft along not expending as much energy while they are working hard. We rotate new, fresh, energized leaders to the point position often so we keep up speed and the troop keeps going. We don’t want to slow down to a crawl because no one else would take the lead.
Get ready for your next turn at point so you keep the group rolling along.