Successful Guild Leader here (3.5yrs) AMA

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4 Blood Elf Priest
0
10/22/2011 10:59 PMPosted by Blessandra
This TYPE of thread is NOT helpful in the long run to THIS forum.


Sure it is. What with the constant bickering going on between the regulars, this thread - before you showed up to say you don't agree with it - is a breath of fresh air. What isn't helpful in the long run to this forum are people who believe their way is the only way, people who believe they speak for the majority, and people who refuse to see anyone else's ideas as valid. Can you guess which three people I'm referring to? If people like that stopped posting here, this would be an educational forum where people wouldn't have to hide on alts to say what they'd really like to say on their mains.
85 Worgen Warrior
10140
I generally like this thread up until this blessandra person decided to start posting...because at least then advice to readers problems was being given by those with experience or had answers. IDC if u disagree with said advice but bashing a helpful thread is unnecessary if you learned anything as a child it should have been "If you have nothing nice to say, dont say it at all" but maybe that was just me?
85 Blood Elf Paladin
9135
I got several questions but will list them at level of importance. And i hope dearly that you can help.
1) how do i fight apathy in my guild? In wolk my guild was like a family, we were always there, raiding, doing dungeons, quests, etc together. Then cata came out and now, the level of apathy and complacency is at an all time high. Example, me, my alts, and my Co-GM's and their alts have all experienced when we ask for help (on a quest, dungeon, and so on) we are ignored in guild chat. We can beg for an half hour for guildies to help and have all our chat ignored. However, when they need help, have questions or need something we are always there for them. And this is coming from people who have been a part of our guild for more than 2 years, core members, with less than a core attatude. I have demoted, We have had guild meetings, i have talked to people 1-on-1 to resolve this issue and i have been getting no where. I have been frustrated to the point of stepping down as GM for a week for a break and gotten promises from members they would change and try harder. I then came back to GM status and see the same thing from the same folks.
Dont get me wrong i love my guildies, they make me smile on bad days, yet here lately i dread logging on because i honestly feel like my guild has lost its luster, its fun and glory it once had. The level of "what's in it for me", "i wanna do my own thing" , or "why should i do...." attitudes is about to drive me to a funny farm.
2) Since we have tried to get the guild fired up about raiding again in cata content we have had....well apathy kill that too. Several of our core members, who were great raiders and were hungry for it have left our guild to go get (and rightfully so) the raiding and content they are hungry for. I too am hungry for content, along with several other members, but getting people (like the core people we had in wolk) fired up and excited for it is falling on deaf ears. How do i keep my few remaining "hungry for raiding" members and build from there a true all guild core group? how do I inspire others in guild to want this as well? I fear if the "apathy cancer" is not cured soon our guild will be nothing ore than just a pure leveling guild.
I am at my whits end. I have kicked, talked, begged and fumed over this issue for months. Thank you.
Alright electraglide, I will give you my thoughts on the matter, but you need to take a step back and look at the big picture, the root of the problem. Why does your guild have this apathy? Why are people not as interested in these things? You might be well-intentioned for the benefit of the guild in your approach but what you are doing is not helping and more than likely will push it more in the direction you are dreading. I really hope you hear me out on why I think this. You really need to put yourself in your guildie's shoes.


Example, me, my alts, and my Co-GM's and their alts have all experienced when we ask for help (on a quest, dungeon, and so on) we are ignored in guild chat. We can beg for an half hour for guildies to help and have all our chat ignored. However, when they need help, have questions or need something we are always there for them. And this is coming from people who have been a part of our guild for more than 2 years, core members, with less than a core attatude. I have demoted, We have had guild meetings, i have talked to people 1-on-1 to resolve this issue and i have been getting no where. I have been frustrated to the point of stepping down as GM for a week for a break and gotten promises from members they would change and try harder. I then came back to GM status and see the same thing from the same folks.


Ok first off, what is your guild about? You say in WOTLK you were always raiding, doing dungeons, questing together and such and it was great, but now people don't want to. Well, were they all happily doing end-game content together? Was the initial lvl push from 70-80 great and also 80-85 lvling together great? It sounds like you are being friendly and nice and boosting people's alts, and that might be great in a leveling guild, but you are NOT a leveling guild from what I can tell and it's not your responsibility.

I might be taking a hard-line on this and this is really my opinion .Of course it is ok to want to help out guildies and their alts, sure, but it should not be expected. I mean, you are an end-game guild, not an alt boosting guild. Often in expansions people get bored so they start leveling. If you tried to help everyone that wanted you wouldn't have any time for what you wanted to do. Now don't get me wrong, if a guildie says something along the lines of "Hey, can anyone help me with Crucible of Carnage.." or something real quick along those lines than YES, I would hope there'd be a couple willing to help out, but if someone is constantly wanting help in low lvl dungeons and so on, I always tell them the same thing. "Hey, we always are anxious to help guildies when we can, but since we are focused on level 85 content if you really want a lot of low level help their are leveling guilds for your alts that will have tons of people willing to group up that will probably be better for your alts."

The real problem I am seeing here is that you are no longer running the guild like a friend, but more like a boss. I really can tell that you seem well-intentioned for your guild, but you are making a rather classic mistake of being the GM almost forcing people to do stuff... In the long run this is going to create a hostile environment and people will not want to stick around. These worry me:

11/21/2011 11:47 AMPosted by Electraglide
I have demoted, We have had guild meetings, i have talked to people 1-on-1 to resolve this issue and i have been getting no where


...promises from members they would change and try harder.


Change and try harder? You are telling them that they have to help out others? Anyway, all I am saying is that you are no telling them how they should be playing a game. At the end of the day, your guild needs to be about having fun together, or letting the players play the game how they want to play. You worry about just becoming a glorified leveling guild, but from what I can tell, that is almost what it sounds like you are pushing it to.

So, now that I have told you what I think you're doing wrong, let me tell you what I think you should do about it. Start over, have a big guild meeting, and YOU MUST make sure they all understand that this is not going to be you getting frustrated at all of them for not helping out alts. You should set the tone as it being a fun event, but you wanted to share something with them they all would like to hear. The fact that you are getting so frustrated over this, imo, shows how important this is to you, but I am telling you you are going to have the opposite effect in the guild you want. Just give this a shot at what I am saying.

Anyway, at your meeting, lay out the goals of your guild (raiding and such). Don't force expectations on your long-time guildies. Overtime, people change their playstyles. Sometimes people want to be hardcore raiders, and other times they just want to casually play the game.

<CONTINUED>
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Talk about your vision for the guild. It's ok to share about what you have accomplished and the unity you once had. Suck up your pride and apologize for being so demanding, but then counter in a way so they can see that you are just a passionate guild leader who loves the friendship and times you've had and you were sad to see the guild falling apart a little bit and maybe you went a little overboard. You need to be upfront and honest with them and this. They will respect you more for doing something like this. (Remember this is still my opinion on how I would handle your difficult situation)

So, set your goals, drop the intensity on your guildies, if people have alts, including you, that want tons of help out as they level, encourage them to join a leveling guild. Remind them about it's cool to help out with maybe a difficult group quest here and there, but expecting essentially dungeon lvl boosting is really not a fair burden on a non-lvling guild. And then, talk about recruiting, and get everyone involved.

Which leads me to your 2nd question... YOU need new blood in the guild.

Several of our core members, who were great raiders and were hungry for it have left our guild to go get (and rightfully so) the raiding and content they are hungry for. I too am hungry for content, along with several other members, but getting people (like the core people we had in wolk) fired up and excited for it is falling on deaf ears. How do i keep my few remaining "hungry for raiding" members and build from there a true all guild core group? how do I inspire others in guild to want this as well? I fear if the "apathy cancer" is not cured soon our guild will be nothing ore than just a pure leveling guild.
I am at my whits end. I have kicked, talked, begged and fumed over this issue for months. Thank you.


Getting people inspired and fired up is not always easy, but you can try by having this meeting, sharing your passions and your vision for the guild, and that you are going to start recruiting some people to do some raiding. Inspiring others is tricky, but go by this old adage for teaching, "If you are not feeling it as a teacher, they are not feeling it as learners." Apply that to your guild in the sense that your passion for the guild can be contagious. Great leaders just have a way of getting people motivated in their own way, but a lot of it is because they personally believe in what they are doing and they can convey that with feeling and passion, just like you have passion for your guild. Use it in a unifying way.

The thing is, many core members left because the raiding fell apart. Overtime this is normal. Even the top 25 guilds in the world who have pretty solid core raiders are always still recruiting as people burn out, get interested in other things, and you need to refill your ranks. Your guild once had a core group in WOTLK and it didn't stick around in Cata. So, your best raiders looked elsewhere. It's normal, you just need to be more open to recruiting from what it sounds like.

This doesn't mean open the floodgates to new members, but integrating 2 -3 new members a week until you are happy with what you have is not unreasonable. Which reminds me, when you say your goals, have a deadline and timeline for your guildies (and make sure it's referenced in the guild forums or something too for those that don't make it). Set a goal, like, "We want to have a solid core raiding team ready to go and clearing bosses within 2-3 weeks." Help your guildies see your vision. Also, don't get down on them if they aren't excited about it either, you can always recruit someone who might be.

So, with time, you will continue to build up new and lasting long-time guild, but again, open that door to recruiting for your ranks.

Finally, this apathy cancer you speak of can be many things, so with everything I have given you today, use it to change the tone of your guild. Again, right now there just seems to be such a bitter tone coming from you. While it is the guild as a whole that makes up the guild family and makes up the friendship, it truly is the guild leader who sets the tone for the guild. Just turn it around and set that new positive tone.

I hope this helps.

GOOD LUCK!
85 Blood Elf Paladin
9135
It is funny you mentioned CoC. That was the very quest that we have so few willing to help others out with. Example, 25 ppl online who were lvl 85 who could help, (most sitting in org) 30 minutes of asking for guildies, and no response, not 1. We typically don't run low lvl toons thru dungeons unless you find a bored guildie who says "eh why not".
The CoC quest, and getting even 3 guildies in for a dungeon run is almost impossible. i do agree and understand everything you said. In wolk we were a casual raiding guild with some real success. Cata hit and it SEEMS as tho a good 90% of the guild got less than inspired to do anything but level alts of all levels. 85's, 30's etc. It's like the same people in wolk changed everything, goals, play styles and attitudes all around. Farming for cata mats, our guild website maintenance, helping others with quests, questions, raid leading the whole shooting match, has fallen onto my shoulders and a couple of co-gm's. . And I have become "mom" and they all come to me to help with any and every thing. It has been this way for months. I feel i have tried all the "nice meathods" with no success.
That being said, I admit i am burned out on doing for others, and the guild and being pretty much, the only one who does it. Indeed i am passionate about my guild and my guildies. and i may have set a bitter tone in my previous post, due to said frustration that has built up for months. I have,perhaps,set too lofty of a vision for the guild right now, but i honestly believe whole heartedly we can do it, perhaps tho, not now. Which saddens me. We come so far together to see it die off a little at a time. And i agree on needing new blood. The sad part is we have had new blood come a go, because a new member comes in starts raiding with us and sees we have to pug so may spots for a guild our size, and with the number of members we have. They too see the lack of interest for even the lowest of raids in cata, and they move on (understandable).
Stepping back and changing my tone is very well what i need to do. I am currently trying to recruit members who have the same goals: casual, fun but successful raiding with weird but happy helpful folks.
Otherwise, in wolk, we were active in gchat, ran dungeons together alot, which boosted people for raids, because most of us ran with one another in dungeons etc. We survived a few mass exoduses from guild, people leaving thinking they could do better as their own guild etc, and most all have wandered back home with us and we retained the "magic" we had. Cata, or elements of cata, have changed alot of that. mind sets have indeed changed.
Indeed you have given me alot to think about, and alot of great advice. now it is on my shoulders, to make the change on my end and tone it back a few notches. i greatly appreciate your advice, and quick response. I thank you ever so sincerely.
Hey Electraglide, I am glad you read what I put and I really hope you figure it all out. Anyway, I know it can be tough and frustrating what no one wants to help on something even like a CoC, but overall, you just need to pretty much start over with the guild and rebuild it. Eventually you will have those motivated and excited people again.

It also sounds like to me your guild has suffered an extreme case Cataclysm boredom. I'll be honest, I think Cataclysm, while it did a lot of good things, has been by and far the most boring end-game content wise of any expansion so far. YAY, blizz re-did all the old world, but you get all of that with just 10-15 bucks for a new copy of the game so who cares unless you're lvling alts. You guys paid for new end-game content with Cataclysm and Blizz has failed to deliver on it. Of course, this is my opinion, and not all has been bad (RBGs have been a great implementation after the first hiccups lol), but there is a reason so many WOW players have stopped playing in Cata over any other expansion. And right now is the worst too, the end of a patch, 2 weeks away from another patch. It's pretty much the dead zone for WOW activity when a lot of people don't do much.

Anyway on your CoC thing... just ask your guild for like 5 minutes, not much more. You can't find people just PUG it. if you keep asking the guild for this long they will start thinking you've been spamming so long that now you are just trying to guilt them into joining your group, to make a point or something.

If they want your help with something, then like I said in my previous post, start fresh, and lay it all out in a big game-changing guild gathering where you lay out the whole alts that want boosting and help should get into a lvling guild.

Look, I remember this new member joined, there was like 25 people online, she had been with us for like 2 weeks, and now we had 2 of her alts. she would constantly sit in guild chat asking for dungeon help and group quests, and when her attempts to ask for help fell on deaf ears cause everyone else was busy with other things or just wanting to afk in org, she raged quit on the guild after telling us we all sucked. The reality is she just wanted to be in a guild and get her alts boosted and waste some other person's time and we didn't so she got mad and left. Good riddance. Don't be afraid to implement what I previously stated, and if you are worried people might leave the guild over it, let them, as they are just using you anyway. You should be opening up for new recruiting and your guild will be just fine in the long run.

Also, keep in mind that your co-GM and officers might be experiencing a similar burnout, so try to ease their burden too. They will probably be completely thrilled when you share with them your vision of actively encouraging users who ask for a lot of help to join a leveling guild that will be able to help them better.

Finally, you mention how you have had new blood come and go because they see you struggling with filling raid spots. I recommend reading up on what I put on recruiting pages one and 2 responses in depth. Briefly though, you need to be honest and upfront with them, and share with new recruits on where you envision the guild's raid team in 2-3 weeks and then proactively make those goals happen of having a full team. so, if it's week 1 and there are still only 5-6 of you and you need 4-5 pugs, they might be more understanding. But, if you fail to fill spots for weeks at a time, that is just a failure in being proactive about the recruiting. I have been on small pop servers compared to high pop and I know for certain that even on small pop it's not hard to find a decent set of people to raid with rather quickly as long as you are proactive about it.

Anyway good luck, just remember it's a game, so take a step back and have a breather, and go back into your guild with the idea that you are starting fresh again and going to rebuild the guild into something great. All I can see is continue to be passionate, be proactive, and make sure the main goal of your guild is just to have fun! Being a guild leader should honestly be FUN not stressful! There can be moments of frustration, but overall it should be a fun position to be in. So, turn this around and make it fun again!

I really wish you guys all the best!
85 Orc Hunter
6860
Hey Arkaan

I would like to start an overly aggressive pvp guild but I’m not the best pvp’r out there. What suggestions do you have for the ins and outs of starting and running a successful pvp guild?

A little bit about myself:

I started playing about mid wrath and have never been able to hone my skills in raids to be excepted as a raider so have reverted to being a target dummy for those silly alliance here on KT. Now don’t get me wrong I love pvp in all forms (world, bg and arena). My nine year old son and I dabble in arena here and there but I don’t know what skill level would be acceptable as a guild leader or is that important? I also don’t have any lower lvl guys to help new guys out as all my slots are filled, 8- 85’s 1- 81 and 1- 71.

A guild I would like to be:

Mature individuals coming together that simply enjoy playing WoW and yerns to spill alliance pixel blood in the world and battle grounds and arenas.

Mature individuals that enjoy strategizing and implanting tactics and can learn to work as a team.

Mature individuals that can communicate without excessive vulgarity.

Mature individuals that can enjoy their victories and except defeats (don’t have to like the later).

Mature individuals that understands not everyone plays up to there ubberawsomesaucepawnage skill level and that a person at any skill level can enjoy playing WoW.

I have no interest in becoming what one of your poster called a Walmart guild but a small effective guild that learns to work smartly together.

Arkaan….. Arkaan when you get up off the floor lyao at my vision of a good guild please give me any advise you can as I have read the entirety of this post and am impressed with your ability to read and think about what your answering. You have obviously done something right with your guild and would like your input (sorry Blessandra).

P.S I was divided about which guy to post on my s10/ruth DK or this guy, but I started as a hunter and always have been a hunter at hart. While not fully pvp geared this guy has over 100 AV victories on his record that I’m very proud of even if everyone now hates AV.
81 Night Elf Death Knight
1700
On realm Bloodhoof I own a small 11 member guild. All I want is for a guild where everyone has fun and EVERYONE has a great time. It has 3 bank tabs and is eager for members. I devote my time to my guildies but they are getting bored because most of the guilds on my realm is snoby and mean. Can someone please make my day and join it. It would make me happy or will they tell me awesome tips on how to be a successful leader? Thank you.
90 Human Mage
8395
Here are a few links that might help out for both Skulle and Vanator (removed the link to this post because, well, they've already found it ... <grin>)

http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/3049865456 - Understanding the Guild Menu
http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/3049835431 - Marketing your guild
http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/3082030282 - How to write your guild finder ad
http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/2878488619 - Guild leveling tips - post 4.2
http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/3123037790 - Importance of a Positive Atmosphere
http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/2674640706 - General Information and Guide List
90 Orc Death Knight
13535
Thats some really good advice man . I am one of those Suffering Guild Leaders, trying to recruit and keep members while they believe we are not lvling or growing fast enough . Its a pain but i agree in the long run will be worth it for quality of members and friends . Im just stickin with it and helping any guildie any way i can . GL to anyone taking on this burden . LOL .While its a pain , It is also alot of fun .
48 Goblin Warrior
525
I need some help knowing how to run a succesful guild most of my members go to another guild and leave mines but I just started my guild on Thursday can u help me
85 Tauren Druid
7095
Hello :)

I am a GM of a guild that began as a small rl friends and family core. In the last 6 months we've grown to 500+ members (including alts). My focus has always been to provide a casual, friendly environment for mature people to enjoy. We welcome alts and do many activities. We currently have 2 10man reg DS cores.

I have about 6 ppl who are dedicated to the guild. Due to the major growth in the last few months the current guild structure is no longer functioning well.( we've always had a "give what you get" philosophy). I have read so many forums my head hurts lol! But I have established a new structure that I am about to implement. GM, Banker, Officer, Leaders (organize guild events such as parties, bg groups, mog runs, raids etc), Community Members (regularly participate in guild activities and often donate useful items to bank), Perk's Only Club(keep to themselves, but cause no drama in guild), New, and Fallen.

This has been mentioned in other posts, but the problem we've encountered is that we have a lot more ppl asking for things that don't return mats or favors when they are called upon. This has caused us to run out of mats and our bank funds to deplete rapidly. The original core group is spending all their time farming/crafting etc for everyone else. They are frustrated and feel under-appreciated and overworked. I empathize and feel the same and this is what triggered the restructure. I account this to the excessive growth we've recently had. I don't think that new members are bonding with the group as a whole because we are having so many ppl joining so quickly it's hard to build a good relationship with each of them.

The one thing I can't decide on, is how bank access should work. In the past, we've been asked for this and that and the core members were always able to provide it and in return those ppl always came out to help and/or donated whatever mats/items they may come across into the gbank.

My plan: the rank "community members" will be required to attend 1 scheduled event, or donate items from a pre-defined list. I'm thinking 1 stack/item per week each. In my mind, I see this being a reasonable solution, only the members that provide benefit TO the guild will be able to benefit FROM the guild (benefits above guild level perks). I have had members say "no-one is gonna do that" or "that's not fair". I think they are wrong...at least I hope they are, lol. Which is why I've posted in this forum. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated and I'm wondering what you all think dedicated participation and donation should entitle a guildie to?

Thanks in advance!
Edited by Awakune on 7/31/2012 11:39 PM PDT
90 Undead Priest
4640
Do I have to be on 24/7 to be a GM?
85 Blood Elf Mage
1670
08/02/2012 09:23 PMPosted by Sacredhealz
Do I have to be on 24/7 to be a GM?


really necroing a thread to post this?
90 Night Elf Death Knight
6530
Thank you sooo much for all this information! It has really helped me as a new guild leader! You should make a book out of this!
90 Night Elf Hunter
11735
I'm glad that this thread helped you, just remember to check post dates on threads before replying. The thread is two and a half years old, and as such the OP is unlikely to read your response. In the future, making a new thread with a link to the older thread and using the rest of your post to talk about what you liked about the thread and sort of entering into a new discussion would be much more ideal. =)
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