Topic How to run a Successful Guild
I'm a successful program manager and have worked very closely with executives over the past 10 years and much of my success as a guild leader is attributed to these experiences. The one area where I have to disagree with you is on discipline. In a hard-core raiding environment I have found the best results by having complete transparency for the entire guild. Everyone knows what the issues are as we face them and everyone can see how I am dealing with them. I make people aware of this from the second they interview to join the guild. The expectation is that if you are messing things up, you will hear about it from the first time it happens, and yes it will be public so that EVERYONE ELSE CAN HEAR ABOUT IT AND LEARN FROM IT.
I look at it less like discipline and more like teaching. You don't have to berate someone to let them know that they are doing a mechanic incorrectly. And by doing it openly and publicly everyone in the raid just learned from the same mistake. I expect all of my members to handle this process maturely. If people do get defensive and start making excuses I warn them first, and if it continues, I simply remove them from the guild. I've even threatened to remove our MT who is also an officer after she continued to argue with me in front of the guild over a simple mechanic issue. The reason I do this is that I don't have a lot of time outside of my REAL job to deal with all these issues privately one on one. And at the same time, I want to play with mature people that can handle constructive criticism openly without getting their panties in a bunch. I've removed several people that couldn't handle it, but honestly most of my guild is fine with it, and everyone is happier when we are playing better and we've found this corrects problems quick while we are learning new fights.
The evidence is in the performance. We only raid 6-9 hours a week. Despite that, we set many server firsts, were consistently the top alliance raiding guild, and had great success with hard-modes in Wrath. I took a lot of pride in the fact that we learned encounters FASTER than anyone else. Yes, we were behind the best guilds out there because we raid so little, however in Wrath we learned LK in just 18 pulls from start to finish. Our competition beat us to the LK kill, but only after wiping over 100 times to him.
If you can keep your raiders disciplined you can spend a lot less time seeing the same mistake repeated over and over again. You can also avoid seeing someone else make the same mistake because they learned not to do it the first time their friend did it and it was brought up after the wipe.
I find it kind of funny that Evir guy talks so much crap, when this is my alt, and i only leveled this character because my guild needed another tank and i just happened to be on this character more and made him my main and gleader for the time being. Armory Deodatus-Korgath, thats my main, he has been around since vanilla, raided quite a bit and seen my fair share of stuff in game and as far as guilds go.
The post i made is NOT for super hardcore raiders, nor is this entire topic of forums for HARDCORE RAIDERS, i made it to share wisdom is a casual enjoyable guild to be in and do stuff with friends. Yes we do raid but no we havent made it to HMs yet, or downed any final bosses, but we only raid 2 days a week casually.
I dont understand this attitude of "YOU HAVENT DOWNED EVERY BOSS IN THE GAME YET THEREFORE YOU CLEARLY HAVE NO CLUE HOW LEAD HURRRRR" attitude. And i do agree with Morashtak, i should relabel as casual raiding guild. Honestly if you have a place where people only log online to get purples and be e-thugs, please make your guide to it in a different thread, and keep the trolling out of mine. I simply placed what id experienced and felt in this thread for new GMs who wanted to run a place where them and their friends might hang out, there are already a billion raid threads on how to run raids, thats not what this thread it about.
"(Yelling at someone quickly for standing in fire mid attempt isn’t what im talking about either.)"
I was speaking of causing problems withing the guild, during raids, yelling is good, I should clarify. My fault for that, but im speaking of more causing drama within the guild, creating problems that harm the guild as a whole, not simply messing up in raids, this is NOT i repeat NOT a raid guide thread and i dont understand why EVERYONE seems to think it is. This is simply how to run a wholesome guild in a positive manner, where you CAN create an environment that people WANT to log in to.
Edited by Killerina on 1/30/11 12:31 PM (PST)
It's interesting to see the perspective of casual vs raiding guild mindsets in the different responses.
I guess reading comprehension is very difficult to some people, congrats on your guild being absolutely amazing, please stop trolling in a simple thread i made to help up and coming GMs.
I'm always wary of "How to Run a Guild" topics because they inevitably end up sounding more like "How I run my guild - which I deem to be a success for whatever reason - and thus you should too."
Specifics that work incredibly well for one guild may cause another to dissolve.
(I'm not saying that they are never helpful - indeed, they can very much be - but they should always be viewed as suggestions and not rules/requirements.)
However, bashing the OP seems utterly pointless and immature. He's offered some very valid suggestions regarding leadership, regardless of what the character he's posting on has achieved.
You wrote a lot so you are obviously somewhat passionate about what you wrote here, and a little defensive. That's human nature. If you are genuinely interested in writing a guide to be sticky'd, then I have sincere feedback for you, and I am someone who writes guides. So I'm not some opinionated chump here to criticize your posts with no hooves to stand on. Instead, I'm one of those folks with years.. YEARS... of experience writing guides for games, and not just this one. You would do well to listen and learn.
My intention is to help you through constructive feedback, but you have to be willing to really listen and not get all bent out of shape and defensive. Or go crying with wounded pride and give up because I'm giving you a massive amount of critical yet constructive feedback. I'm not telling you all this to make you feel bad, I'm telling you so you learn and improve. Hear me, truly hear me. I would like to see you come back with one kickass guide.
So I'm going to tell you how your posts come off as. I'm going to point out some of the major problems with your material. Then I'm going to break down for you the major elements you should be including in order to help you organize your material more effectively. I'll point out other problems I see here, and how others have handled themselves instead to prevent them as best as I can remember them.
The first thing is, your posts do not read like a guide. They read like an opinionated half-rant. Do you do a lot of writing? I don't mean chatting, I mean writing documents, books, articles, helpful literature? Because it does not look like it.
Another of the key problems is a complete lack of structure. From the start, which gives no notice of intent of what you are attempting to do here with this information, but instead a proactive self-defensive posturing statement, until the very end where you refuse to summarize your message, giving more attitude.
If your goal is to provide a helpful guide, you need:
1 - a statement of intent (what is the purpose of the guide)
2 - a list of what will be discussed
3 - the subject matter organized in the aforementioned listed manner
4 - a summary and possibly a conclusion
You have none of these. It is a jumble of topics that clearly were not organized in thought before hand. Did you make an outline of what you were going to talk about before you posted this? I sincerely doubt it. Instead it is more likely as you were writing it you'd remember things as you were typing it up and add them as they came to you.
That is a basic lack of forethought and structuring. It is why your message is a mess. People who write guides will typically 'reserve' posting space, because they already went thru a couple of drafts on their guide and know how much space it is going to take on the forums. You reserved none. One post simply overflowed into a 2nd. Clearly there was no pre-planning.
Your words are heavily opinionated at times, which is causing your unnecessary duress. You are also choosing terminology that is open to interpretation and subject to dispute, which again is causing you feedback problems.
Participants of the Raid and Guild Leadership forum, are typically very helpful - a strong contrast to the rest of the WoW forums - yet you are treating your feedback as if we are in the troll saturated General Discussion forum.
There is no formatting to your article. Thankfully you actually have paragraph breaks and not hitting us with a massive wall of text, but other then that, there is very little in 'visual organization'.
In addition, with your own feedback here and your edits, you are continually contradicting yourself to a degree. Not to mention the title is too open ended. It really is. Something more appropriate to what you presented would be "Beneficial Structuring for Casual Guilds". Stay away from How To's, they attract too much debate from people looking to disprove your methods.
A guild is like a business.
True, and a guide is NOT an opinionated unorganized series of free-flowing thoughts. It is a structured, organized, un-opinionated essay that provides beneficial information both openly and clearly without prejudice and bias.
In conclusion, I believe if you really want to provide helpful documentation to the player populace that would be sticky'd, then you need to really put some hard effort in to it. Really organize it and go through a few drafts to perfect your message(s) you intend to convey. Make it something you are proud of, not merely something you felt the need to get off your chest.
Some excellent ideas..but I have to disagree that its a blueprint for casual raiding guilds.
When it comes to managing a guild not every guild leader has or will act in the same manner.
Yes some times it can be annoying logging on and getting goofy whispers. But at the same time..It is actually horrible leadership shown if you have a wall that separates you from your guild members.
When it comes to managing a Guild I don't look at it as a business but more as a team.
1:) Everything is based on the We factor. No team is strong based on the skill of 1 player.
Yes in certain situations you can see that someone is doing better then another in the same role. Yet that one superstar.. can't clear a raid by themselves. They can't do 85% of the dps/heals to finish a boss. It requires the team as a group jelling together to get past content.
2:) I am a Coach. I don't teach anyone how to play.. I just steer people in the right direction that will accentuate their best abilities. I judge based on how a person reacts to certain situations. Based on these tendencies.. I might recommend they focus or switch to a spec that matches their play style. Many times its worked out great in a persons favor and they end up having more fun.
3:) I have an open door policy. IF you need to talk to me when I can I am willing to listen. For many people based on prior experiences dealing with other guild leaders ... having an open and honest gm is a huge change for them. Having a gm who enjoys talking all their guild members is refreshing. It has worked out in our favor because we end up finding some awesome gems.
4:) I praise when they deserve it, I criticize when they need it. If you have someone who used to have problems..and then has worked on their craft and now is doing better... then make sure you applaud them for it. IF you see a player that is on the cusp of becoming a really good player.. but needs some ironing out.. Talk to them privately. I had a young mage in my guild who was learning the ins and outs of raiding..but was very goofy most of the time and didn't take the time of his teammates seriously. But after I praised his potential but reminded him that despite everyone enjoying his company.. they would enjoy it even more if he stayed focus throughout a raid for the goal of downing a boss. His raid awareness and focus increased 100%.
5:) I don't waste time if my gut has a feeling. I react swiftly when someone is going to harm the whole of the guild based on their petty actions.A guild leader also has to be strong and stick to their guns when they KNOW it is in the best interest of the guild as a whole. How do you know? When you get that feeling in ones gut that tells you its the right path to take.
6:) A guild leader needs to be humble. A guild leader needs to be willing to accept that sometimes you will make a mistake. A guild leader has to understand that you will be constantly evolving and learning. Not everything is point blank clearly defined in black and whites and you will have to adjust to different situations.
Example currently my guild will for the first time have to deal with the addition of a Legendary that we will without a doubt be able to assist in one of our members getting. AT this moment we have 2 members that without a doubt deserve the honor to wield this amazing weapon. And We are discussing this now because I know our guild will be successful in Firelands. Our guild was far more casual in the past and I Was still green as a gm and didn't have a firm grasp on the pulse of my guild and what we could accomplish. Now I know what we can do and I Am not going to limit us as I did in the past.
There is no perfect outline for running a guild. For some like a coach...they run one guild.. fail and learn from the past.. run a second guild....and get better.. Then fail again.. and start a third guild and finally.. its that third experience that everything comes together and success is achieved.
And there are some who are so natural at it that their first team just blows everyone away.
Its a constant work in progress running a guild. And it is absolutely fun and rewarding if you make it so.
I have created a guild in the old days and all of my members has since stopped playing.
How do I recruit new memebers into the guild?
It looks like my server ysondre already has everyone in a guild and there does not seem to be new players logging on...?
Gonna say I agree with most of the OP, however one of the issues I come up with is when I'm online, and trying to deal with an issue, (and I tell the officers that I'm handling it) I have one officer that always seems to be also trying to handle the situation in his own way. I've finally had to demote him because we kept giving mixed messages to guildies and my message is the one that I want to be in the forefront (still my guild last time I checked). Great guy, and wonderful when I'm offline because willing to step up. But... ergh! Anyway... like I say, like most of it.
I think the information is good for examining one facet of running a type of guild.
I would argue the title of the post is too subjective.
Successful implies that the guild is what it was formed for and that means whether or not a guild is successful is determined by the objectives it has achieved as defined at the founding.
As is seen from many posts, many different gamers have different conceptions of what they want and how they want their guild objectives to be met.
The information you provided is not bad. It is however bulky and unwieldy to read. I recommend creating an outline and looking for ways to shorten your paragraphs/sentences. Give your reader audience, assuming you've identified one, equal amounts of reading material and space to rest their eyes. I agree with the previous poster's comments about formatting.
I would recommend a guide for a sticky if it is easy to read and user friendly. An index or content would go far towards assisting your audience so they can use the search function of their browser to get to a topic they want specifically more information on.
Certainly it's better to call someone out on what they're doing as they're doing it, but what if you've been made aware of a problem with a guild member that relates to past events, things that happened when you weren't there or a problem you weren't even aware existed? Say, other people in the guild have whispered you their concerns and you now need to approach the person to discuss it.
In work environments, managers will call their employees out when their doing something wrong on the job, but for situations described above, they'll pull them aside or call them to their office for privacy. It's situational, really.
I have a question, I am a guild leader of Sorrows End a lvl 4 ally guild and I want to make it great, at one time I had 160 or so members and now I have 21, most are inactive, and I want to get my guild growing...any ideas of how I can get my guild to become strong.
Do you have any suggestions on when to promote players from when they join till they are Members?
Is it necessary to keep notes on all players as when they joined the guild etc?
How do you set the repair costs for Raid leaders and Officer?
What is a good amount for each to get weekly?
I have many more questions too but will wait for answers to these and post more then. Thank you for all your time and assistance :)