Life as a Guild Leader
You Can't Please Everyone
Many guild leaders described how they tried to be everyone's friend and tried making sure that everyone in the guild was happy. The most common lesson that respondents learned was that it's simply impossible to please everyone.
The toughest thing about being a guild leader is maintaining relationships with all of your members on a personal level, and realizing that no matter what, you're not going to please everybody. [WoW, M, 30]
The most valuable thing I have learned from playing the role of a guild leader is one akin to life: No matter what you do there will always be some folks that do not like you. [Legends of Cosrin, M, 30]
One reason why this is the case is because guild leaders do not have the resources to make everyone happy. And in fact, trying to do so creates a culture of asking the guild leader for more.
God damn, people don't listen. I hated it. They are so whiny and expect you to do exactly what they say and give them what they want. Balancing the needs of 50 people suck... I won't do it again. I don't even want to be an officer. Takes all the fun out of the game. [WoW, F, 26]
But the main reason you can't please everyone is because of the sheer diversity of needs and motivations in any group of people. Different guild members are in the guild for different reasons and derive satisfaction from different things.
The toughest part of being a guild leader is that my guild is comprised of people who have great personalities and get along really well, but are a real mixed bag of playing styles. You've got the guy who has 10 lvl 30 characters, you've got the guy who levels at a glacier pace, you've got the guy who hits 60 in a month but only wants to solo, you've got your hardcore raiders, the guy who has 8 lvl 60 toons, your casual players, your night crew and your stone cold PVPers. Trying to come up with goals and content for people like that, people who are all my friends, but have a million different goals, has been a really stressful balancing act. On top of which, I am a casual player who has a busy job and a RL of her own, and can't be on every night of the week to make sure everyone is happy. Being a guild leader has taught me about personality types and how to manage people more then any job I've ever worked on. While its not always a fun lesson, its definitely the most valuable thing I've gotten from the game. [WoW, F, 27]
The toughest thing about being a guild leadership is dealing with very disparate personalities among the members. Our members are older, have jobs and families … Because they are a more mature group they have stronger personalities and opinions. Occasionally this leads to conflict, either in how things are being done or how people are being treated by other guild members. [WoW, M, 34]
Another feature of the MMORPG demographic exacerbates this problem. Groups in real-life workplaces are typically composed of people with similar backgrounds, experiences, and training. Being a leader at college means leading people between the ages of 18-22. And the new recruits at big consulting firms every year are eerily similar people. But being a leader in an MMORPG means leading people between the ages of 10 and 70 - some have never had a job, some are professors, some are retired grandparents, while others are veterans. Pleasing everybody has never been so hard.
Tags: boundary play (17) , guild leadership (3) , guilds (11) , leadership (14) , organizational structure (9) , transfer offline (9) , work and play (8)
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