It’s the end of the expansion and you want to put yourself in a better position for the next one. Before making any kind of changes, the first question you need to ask yourself is if you’re happy with where you and your guild ended up. Take some time to really reflect on this question. It could be anywhere from a few days to even a week. These are questions that you have to answer alone. Involve your officers and your guild later. Right now, it’s a conversation with just yourself.

Are you satisfied with where your guild ended up in this tier and expansion?

Maybe your guild surprised you and you ended up placing higher than you expected. Or you might’ve been disappointed because you felt short at the finish line. Perhaps your guild doesn’t really care about that stuff. This is the time where you have to renew the commitment between yourself and your guild. If you’re satisfied, great! Look for different tweaks or changes you can do to improve and get better! If you’re frustrated with where the guild ended up though, now’s the time to ask yourself why.

Why are you not satisfied with your guild?

It could be as simple as not progression as fast as you wanted. Maybe you didn’t clear or see all the content you wanted to see when it was relevant. Perhaps your team didn’t quite hit the necessary battleground rating targets that were set. Before you can make any changes, get down to the root of it and determine why you’re dissatisfied.

Write it out. Put it on a fridge. Type it in notepad. Stick it in there as a Facebook post. Whatever. Just have it written down somewhere so that you know what’s ailing you. From there, you can start analyzing solutions.

What are the steps that would make you happy?

Maybe it’s a lack of practice or scrimmage time with your team. Maybe there’s a few key weaknesses in your roster that’s not up to scratch with the rest of everyone else. The raid roster isn’t getting enough development and learning time on content.

In my case, I felt 9 hours of raiding wasn’t enough time for everyone to learn content especially with the larger instances where we had to sacrifice a day and a half to get to the progression bosses. We were losing time to farm content. By adding an extra 3 hours to the week, I’m banking on the fact that we can get through early and easy bosses fast enough and devote the rest of the time to learning and getting a handle on the encounters.

That’s just one step. Efforts like this often involve a multi-pronged approach. To advance up in any kind of progression rankings, it’s going to need a look at maximizing efficiency, examining weaknesses in the roster, or even changing leadership. Consider every possibility. More on this later, but for now, figure out exactly what you want to change and how you plan to do it. You’re the GM and you get the final say. While the guild involves players, you’re the one that’s ultimately guiding it’s direction.

Talk to your officers and your guild

Figured out your plan of attack for the long term? Pull up the rest of your leadership individually. Ask them the same questions above and see where they stand. Some officers might be content with where the guild is while others think the guild could and should have done better. Perhaps there are some ideas and viewpoints that you haven’t considered yet. Whatever the case, now you want to sound them out. Throw out your ideas. Let them shoot them down or agree. Have them debate the pros and cons until you settle it out.

Work in some of that verbal magic. Instead of flatly disagreeing or shooting them down, work on soft criticism.

  • I didn’t appreciate how ____ ended up.
  • While we did okay with ____, I’m not satisfied and think we can do better.
  • I disagree with that remark. Here’s how I see it.
  • You brought up a solid point with ____. Let me mull it over a little longer and I’ll get back to you.

Ensure that you have all the major points written down — Aspects of your guild that you weren’t happy with along with your proposed methods in changing and fixing that for the future. Tack it up somewhere internally like in your guild forums. Give it a day before coming back to it. Make any changes you want for the purpose of readability and formatting before posting it out again for general consumption. If you’re finalized on your approach, you can go with what you have. If you want to wait, you can and mention that you’re also open for feedback and discussion. Expect disagreements and players who aren’t going to like the direction you’re going.

Put it up for dissemination anyway and let them talk it over.

Consider all the responses and the feedback you’re getting. But remember that it’s your guild and your vision. Yes, the players and raiders make up the guild, but they’re not the ones with the responsibility of calling all the shots and setting policy. You’re the one making them while considering their input. But acknowledge that it’s going to be hard to keep everyone happy and that you’ll eventually lose people over it.

With new philosophies and policies laid out, your next step is figuring out the fun step: Actions!