Hey, a little new here so let me know if I make any mistakes.
So I’m part of a team that’s been around for a fairly long time and we’ve had our ups and downs in terms of how well we do at competition. We’re usually pretty bad though, if I’m being honest (1-2 blue banners in our 10+ year history). A few years ago we had a change in mentorship and shifted into a more student-led team, largely out of necessity as our new mentor had limited knowledge on FIRST. New mentor is also very bad at time management, which is occasionally detrimental to the team.
Last year, many of our members were seniors and thus graduated, leaving this years team very bare. We were unable to do as much recruitment as usual due to COVID restrictions and not knowing what this season was going to look like. We currently have around 5-8 students doing the majority of the work, most of which are current juniors/seniors who hold leadership positions. This means we aren’t training as many people for the future as we would like.
Right now, I’m extremely worried for the future of this team, as the current structure does not seem very sustainable. Lead mentor tries their best to support the team, but we are usually the last thing on their to-do list, as they are also a teacher, parent, etc… Our current captains are also more focused on working on the robot than general team improvement/training new members, as they take on most of the work, which drives away new members, and the cycle continues.
I don’t think anybody wants this team to fail, but we certainly aren’t taking any steps to improve. How should I go about bringing this topic up to the team? I don’t want to “force” anyone into more work, as everyone on the team has other commitments outside of robotics and we are barely staying afloat right now with our limited size. But again, we need to do something if this team is going to survive beyond next year.