I'd like to share with you a blog post by an LDS Varsity Team Coach that illustrates the frustration a leader can feel in watching a youth not live up to his full potential: Why Won't He Just Earn His Eagle?
As leaders, teachers and parents, we try to help those under our stewardship succeed in any way we can. In the end, though, our charges have their agency, and we cannot force them to succeed. Nor should we. As the author of the article puts it, "At some point this boy must become responsible for his Scouting career."
One thing we have tried to emphasize recently with the boys we teach in Primary is that Satan's plan would not have allowed us to learn and grow. We need to learn and grow if we are ever to become like our Father in Heaven. Part of that process (a large part) is making mistakes.
It is the same with Scouting. Rank advancements and awards are not the purpose of Scouting any more than "getting through" is the purpose of earth life. Advancement is one of the methods of Scouting, a means to an end, not the end itself. (Here's a great blog post about that by another LDS scout blogger.)
Scouting is about creating leaders. The boys start as Wolves with a very defined path, but even then there are some choices they make themselves, the biggest choice being to do the work given to them. As the program progresses, they are given more and more freedom in their path. By the end, each boy should be directing his own path. A Scout who has had his hand held every step of the way, has been pushed through the program, or has had requirements signed off that he did not fully complete, just for the sake of getting through, has been short-changed. A very small percentage of Scouts become Eagle Scouts. That is why it means so much.
This may be one of the most difficult parts of being a leader. I cannot imagine the pain our Heavenly Father must feel watching His children make poor choices, and knowing that only a few will make it back to Him. Why did He let us come here, knowing so few would make it back? Because it is the only way we could ever become what we were meant to be.