Its that time of year again where I spent half my time living from anxiety attack to anxiety attack. It’s a terrible feeling. You sit there and someone says something or you do something only to pause and kinda inwardly folk and wait for some sort of attack. A terrible sense of paranoia. I have to pause and close the eyes and try to calm myself. It’s a miserable state.
I am a leader of a guild that began almost three years ago on World of Warcraft. I’ve seen it grow from barely 10 people who were social and pvp’d a bit to a guild with over 80 accounts to its name and a strong raid team. Sometimes I wonder if it was worth it, keeping the GM title. I’d never really cared strongly for the name and I’ve always wanted more. But because of friends, I chose to stay.
Then when the drama hit early this year that left me holding the reins I threw myself into the job. Mostly out of sheer rebellion and determination. I had been unhappy with how things were being led. It lacked direction. The female leader was uncommitted and hypocritical. And yet she and her bf had been close friends that I’d been playing MMOs with online for 5 years.
Things I felt strongly about that a leader would have to do would be to be compassionate and understanding but authoritative and sticking to the guns. Someone who would uphold the rules laid out even when faced with a decision they didn’t like. Someone who would be willing to put the interests of the guild ahead of their own. Someone that would have the respect needed to command authority when things got unruly and someone who would dedicate themselves to being available to those in the guild.
When I took the reins those had been my goals. I brought in new officers and we began to build a raid team I felt would succeed. Since then I’ve had to make choices like giving Ashes to someone unpopular and on an alt because my own rules had allowed it despite my desire to see it go elsewhere. Other decisions have been in recruiting people and replacing those who have been unable to keep up. Friends who helped build this guild from where it once had been.
A stress on being honest and not babying has also been something I’ve been finding the need to do more. With members who have shown bad attendance or flaky attitudes. With members who can’t quite keep up and might have to sit out more often now. With members who aren’t able to make both days.
I desire to see this guild become one of the best. I want to win. And perhaps I do take this role way to serious. Certainly in some ways it has become a job. Make sure the members are happy. Arrange strats for fights. Arrange dates and times for raids. Make sure people are getting along. Keep the bank clean and field questions. Do your best to keep the guild’s rep clean.
Guilds are so different. Every leader has chosen to run things different. Alliance, we have four guilds of higher status. Valiant, IOD, TheEnclave, and Flaming Bunnies (my guild). Valiant seems to run off of a small core of friends. They allow members pretty much any actions provided it doesn’t cause inner drama. They are skilled and have been top for quite a while. IOD is like a sponge. Any guild that folks, a good number of people can be expected to go to them. They talk almost anyone with a good application and can change up a team composition easily. However, there is a lot of inner fighting which can often be seen by fighting in their recruitment page. There is much competition for raid spots. But that is probably how they are so successful. The competition forces higher play. TheEnclave is more a notorious guild right now. Home to a good number of the guild’s pvpers, they’re full of egotistical douche bags. Their strength is their love for PvP. Whether fighting horde or fighting alliance in trade chat. It’s a free for all in their conversation and when they do pve their strong respect for their leader brings them together and into success.
Sometimes I get frustrated while leading. Too many wish to follow and not enough want to lead. I want to be a follower too. To not feel the need to be responsible for the group. But there is no one willing to step up. No one who can do it the way I believe one should. And because I’m power freakish and micromanaging like that, I continue to do it.
I am ambitious. I want to do more, see more and push more. But I have to pace myself. I cannot push more than they are willing to go. I know a number of them would follow, and go with it if I pushed us harder. But I know there are some on my team who wouldn’t want to or couldn’t even if they wanted. Right now the content is simple – though complicated in some fights while learning.
The truth of the matter is that you always know the right thing to do. The hard part is doing it. – Norman Schwarzkopf
I take this game way too serious. But I enjoy the challenges.