Struggling

Disclaimer: This is a rambling post which is just me writing down my current feelings. It’s not necessarily going to make a whole lot of sense, but sometimes writing about things make me feel better. 

You may have noticed that my content update is even worse than usual lately. The reason for this is that I’m struggling with finding things that I can write about. I still enjoy WoW and I’m logged in probably every day (even if some days it’s just for five minutes to check on the guild and read mail, scan the AH). I’m struggling though.

We’re having a hard time in my guild, and while it’s worse now than it’s been for quite some time I can’t shake the feeling that we’ve been fighting an up-hill battle for quite some time. Part of me wonders if I can deal with this for yet another expansion.

When coming back from the regular break around Christmas and New Year’s, we were less people than before. One of our tanks still hasn’t returned, and I suspect he won’t. Our other tank told us the other day that he is going to discontinue his subscription after this week. We lost another couple of members the past few weeks for various reasons as well.

This leaves me with a severely crippled raid team.

I keep recruiting people, but recruitment is slow and the people we’ve gotten hold of either has gone AWOL, aren’t active enough or have left again. Attendance is poor. I fully understand that people work night shifts, have families and what not – but sadly that doesn’t help our raid team progress.

I’m sitting here, looking at our sign-ups for the next raid. Six people accepted, a couple of tentatives. It’s just not doable. As much as I’d like to, I can’t suddenly drum up 2-4 new raid members. And it makes me tired. So very tired.

I also have this feeling, which I’m sure is a very unfair feeling, but I feel alone. I feel like I’m alone in this struggle. I’m sure the other Officers are working as hard as I am, worrying about it as much as I am.. But because we’re not talking about it, I feel like I’m the only one, even if I’m not.

Every time someone leaves the guild a small part of my desire to raid dies. Especially if it’s someone I’ve poured a lot of effort into talking to and trying to get things better. There are issues in my guild which need addressing, but it’s not things that will change overnight. People leaving due to those things I can understand, but it’s still a shame since we’ve not had the time to try to fix them.

Every time we have to cancel a raid because too few people signed up part of my desire to raid dies. I do my best to be there for every raid. We’ve cut our days down from three to two recently since for some reason Thursday just wasn’t working. Even with fewer days, we don’t seem to have the people available to get two raid nights going.

In the end, I’m just tired of the constant struggle. I pour so much into keeping things smooth and running, and yet it fails. Sometimes I wonder if I’d be happier not being an Officer, just one of the team. Let someone else worry about if we’ll raid or not.

What do you do to keep yourself going?


Comments

Struggling — 18 Comments

  1. (I almost typed one of my passwords into the website field. Tooooo early for me!)

    I definitely feel your pain. Often when I log on, I’m one of only five people online at a time, and often by the time I log off, I’m the only person, or nearly the only person, online, and it’s not even late. This is even after we rehauled the guild, got a new guild leader, new officers, and started recruitment. A lot of those officers themselves have stopped, or almost stopped to the point of rarely logging on, playing. (One of them probably because he threw a bitchfit about guild ranks and withdrawal amounts.)

    I raid with a friend’s guild, though, so I haven’t been having trouble on that front. Oddly, the opposite. I raid more with my guild empty than I was when we had more people.

    • I’m sorry to hear that your guild is going through similar things. Reading posts in the blog world it does seem that it’s a fairly common theme sadly.

      I raid once a week with my friend’s guild as well. At this point I’ve made more progress on my alt in that guild than I have with my main, which is sad in a way. I love and appreciate the fact that I at least get to see and do the fights, but I just wish I got to do it on my main character.

  2. I had the very same problem with our guild until I decided to form a raid group that had nothing to do with the guild. My guildmates were welcome to join but for the spots where we were lacking, I simply looked for people who wanted to raid with a regular group but didn’t want to leave their current guild. You’d be amazed how many of them are out there.

  3. I wish I could be more helpful. The only GM position I’ve ever held is when I made my bank alt into a guild for the GB tabs!

    That being said my RL position is one of leadership. I’ve gone through what some would consider three very different types of vocations to get here (been in my current position for 9 years). I’ve been thinking about another transition, and I’ve been seeking wise counsel. Part of what I’ve been asked is, “What are you bringing to the position that someone else can’t do? Do you still have room to grow in your position, or are you at the cap?”

    Side note – organizations rarely grow beyond their leadership. This is known as the “Leadership Lid.”

    So, what I might ask you is, “What do you bring to the position that is unique and particularly needed?” If there isn’t something unique and particularly needed about your leadership, then maybe you should step down.

    Secondly, “Is being in this position leading you towards personal growth?” If you’re not growing in it, or if you feel things are stagnant; that is another indication of a possible need for a change.

    In the end, may the Mobs always die and your Loot be Epic!

    Z

    • I’m not the GM of my guild, I’m “only” an officer :)

      I don’t see anything that would improve by me stepping down either (even if I think about it at times). People wouldn’t suddenly start showing up for raids because they have an officer less, or even if we for some reason changed GM or all of the officers. In fact, I feel that if I stepped down a lot less would get done and I’d just spend my time nudging the other officers anyway.

      While I appreciate the comparison to real life leadership I’m not sure if I agree that it can be applied to WoW in all cases. Being the GM or even an Officer of a guild isn’t necessarily something that someone strive for (as one would I would think a higher position in their working life). It’s more of a necessary evil that someone has to step up and do. It’s rewarding at times, but most of the time it’s just a lot of work. (And yes, I realise in real life being in a position of power is also a lot of work, but somehow it’s more acceptable/expected when it’s not in a hobby.)

      Don’t get me wrong, I like helping out the guild and doing the admin stuff. Keeping things going. What I don’t like is when it feels like I’m the only one doing it, and the guild members aren’t even trying. A quite possibly unfair statement – but it’s how I currently feel.

      • ” It’s more of a necessary evil that someone has to step up and do. ”
        Word!
        That, plus the pay raise in a higher work position compensates for the added work, while in a game, a position of leadership has to be purely a labor of love. Loose the love, and you’re left with just labor.

  4. Well, you know I’ve been there and done that.

    Honestly, I don’t think there are ever really good answers. I kept pushing myself to give things one more try… and then one more try… and then another one more try. My insanity has been well documented.

    And I don’t want to depress you. But I do think it’s really important to take an honest look at what you can still give without losing too much of yourself in the process. I understand the desire to make things work and I’ve tried to do it at the cost of sleep and sanity. Sometimes it seemed worth it and sometimes it didn’t. I’ve often felt I was doing it all alone and you know what? I still think I was. So you probably are too. And that sucks.

    I did reach the end of what I was willing to give in WoW and I’ve been very happy not having to worry about do we have enough raiders or is the raid team properly balanced. Let alone anything else. I can still enjoy the people I’ve always enjoyed and I can finally do so without pressure. Being non-leadership is really nice, actually!

    So, no attempts at giving you a one size fits all answer here. I do know what it’s like and I do sympathize. If you ever want a friendly ear, let me know. And I hope you figure out what is right for you in this case. <3

    • I will admit that the idea of just being a member is becoming more and more appealing to me. That being said, I don’t think I would be able to do that where I am now.

      Part of me wants to move to my friend’s guild and realm, where I already play on my Paladin. But more “for real”. I’m “just” a member there, and it’s great. Then again, maybe it’s just “great” because it’s like a holiday from my regular stuff.

      I just hope I can scramble up some new members somewhere and get the raiding on track. If nothing else it would save me lots of money in transfer costs *lol*

      Thanks a lot for your advice. I know you’ve been in the same position, and I’m glad you’re in a much better place now. Hopefully eventually I will be too :)

  5. Well, you know how it was for my guild. Hell, you were instrumental to keeping my sanity during the dark moments and I’m so so so so so so so very sorry I can’t be there for you in the same way.

    I do think you should look at it objectively, beg blizzard to make server / faction transfers free for a 24 hour transfer spree and hop right on over to us! Just kidding…kinda!

    I understand many of the issues you guys are having and so clearly see the solutions but change doesn’t come easily. Lucky for me, I was the guild leader in my guild and able to make the hard changes necessary to pick things up again. I lost two officers along the way but the rest of the guild is largely intact and seem to be pretty happy of late.

    It wasn’t easy turning things around and most days I just wanted to toss the whole thing in the rubbish bin, log off and never return. But thanks to my passive aggressive tendencies, I woke up one day fed up; attacked our rules, regulations and expectations with a wrecking ball and built it back in simple form from the base up (base being what was the original intention of the guild in the first place?) My motivation was my connection to all the people in our group. I didn’t want to let them down. Even though I didn’t want to be their GL to start with, I just couldn’t let the whole thing fall apart.

    It’s odd, I hadn’t been to visit your site in a while and wrote this morning on this very topic. Been weighing on my mind as well. <3<3<3

    • I really wish server transfers weren’t so horribly expensive. They’re ridiculously so at the moment. Especially if you want to move more than one character. There needs to be a bulk deal *lol*

      We’ve made a few changes recently (like starting to PUG when we don’t have enough people, and no longer waiting for stragglers), and I’m hoping it will improve. But it sadly won’t suddenly make people appear. Recruitment seems slow to non-existent at the moment as well.

      We shall see what happens I guess.

  6. I’m sorry to hear that you’re so down on your luck. Like others have said before me, it’s hard to give good advice in this kind of situation, because at the end of the day, only you can know what you really want. The one thing I’d suggest, based on this line,

    I’m sure the other Officers are working as hard as I am, worrying about it as much as I am.. But because we’re not talking about it, I feel like I’m the only one, even if I’m not.

    is to have a good talk with the other officers at some point. Sometimes just having a good rant about a shared problem can make you feel better. Maybe one of them doesn’t mind supporting you some more with recruiting. Or maybe they all want to quit and do something different! Either way, it could help you come to terms with your own feelings.

    • That’s some good advice, and I did actually have a good chat with my GM last night. We haven’t come up with any solutions yet, but we’ve got a few things that we will try. I guess at this point I can only wait and see how it will all work out.

  7. Sorry to hear about your troubles. Last year was very similar for us, as a 10-person guild, we still had trouble filling raids and the period from Jan to May or so was horrible – we were sometimes filling the raid with 4, 5 pugs for 10s… but eventually, we found the right people, who stuck around, and we’ve had a very solid core since July/August.

    Honestly, I really had doubts whether we could survive the way we were going, it was looking very, very bleak… but all you need is a lucky break, a couple of good recruits who become friends, add them to the core of your guild and you’re good.

    It helps that a lot of us talk over FB/Email/Chat during the day and know each other quite well… but I’m sure that’s not going to be an option for others, or it might not even be something they’re looking for.

    One thing that helped us was that I refused to stop recruiting. We kept spamming our realm forums (which are incredibly active) and we almost always had a new person around… that actually really forced people to realize that they were in danger of loosing their spot if they weren’t consistent and it wasn’t a personal thing, no harm no foul, but we wanted to raid, and have an active roster and we made that a priority.

    It helped tremendously.

    Anyway – I’ve been there, and it’s brutal, and tough, to see people you train and build up and gear up, just stop logging in but… eventually you’ll find the right people. And if you’re having fun in your other guild – it is not a bad thought to maybe just raid there for a while and see how you like it.

    If you have friends there, and enjoy the guild, and the main server is frustrating you, it might be time to pull up stakes…

    • Our realm forums aren’t so active, or we just don’t have a large pool or people to recruit from. Previously I’ve had a couple of applications each time I’ve posted on there, but lately not even a single one. Maybe it’s because we’re already on the last content patch of the expansion. Recruitment always gets a bit slower then. I’m still trying though :)

      Thanks a lot for your comments, as weird as it might sounds it’s good to hear that others have been where I am now – and that there is always hope.

      • This is absolutely the toughest time to recruit, it really is, and you have my sympathies. We started our guild 2 years ago in this environment and it was just brutal, brutal going.

        But! On a hopeful note – the month or so before MoP comes out, there will be a glut of applicants and you can really weed through them and find the gems.

        Good luck out there!

  8. Almost like reading about our guild situation :)

    I am the GM in our guild, and have been for a long time. Recruting is SO hard right now, and the few applications we get is “hai I wanna raid with you guyz kk” the kind, with people clueless of playing their class, or willing to learn.

    We went from struggling with 25man raids to making 2 x 10 man raids, then people were moaning about balance in groups, progress, not being in the same group as this person or that person… stuff that made me really exhausted and not wanting to log on. I am online one hour before raid start every raid night (3 nights a week) and that hour I am SO busy with whispers, raid setup and discussions.

    Last week we had 3 core members leaving in a very nasty way, leaving the rest shocked and disappointed. I was worried this was the end for us, but this week we have fought our way up to 9th on realm and have been doing pretty well. So I don’t know; maybe we will have sunshine after rain after all?

    Not meaning to burst out with all our guild problems here, but it’s obvious that these problems are common in many guilds ATM. And that kinda helps a bit, at least for me, who sometimes takes things too personal.

    Best of luck :))

    • It is indeed a horrible time to recruit right now, but I’m hoping that we’ll find some, or at least keep afloat with our current Pugging.

      We did the whole change from 25 to 10 in Wrath and it was horrible at the start. By now we’re down to one 10 man team, and it’s sad to think that we can’t even fill that at the moment. But I like to think that things will improve.

      It’s always sad to see members leave, especially core members who have been with you for a long time. Glad you’re still doing well though. I wish you and your guild the best, may we all get out of this alive and ready for the next expansion 😉

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