So, what happens when a guild without officers swells to almost 2 10-man groups?  All of a sudden, Alas has more than she can reasonably handle.  Every little QQ is ending up on her doorstep.

We had to help her out, so we collectively decided to have officers.  However, we’ve all been burned by officers before.  Specifically officers who do not do any jobs and cliquishness.

The discussion lasted for pages.  Since we’ve done everything by consensus until now, we dithered around with every aspect of officership back and forth until we hammered things out over the course of… 2 weeks?

So, in a nutshell, here is how a formerly officerless guild finds itself officer-ful, but manages to keep its vision and character.

Officer “Rules”

There are 4 officers.  They are meant to deal with a specific job, and handle the day-to-day regarding that job.

  1. Recruitment officer: To take care of new people, make sure they’re fitting in
  2. Raid Coordinator:  coordinates the raiding program.
  3. Banking officer: Organizes the bank, procures materials needed for guild items (fish feasts, flasks).  Sells extra stuff and deposits cash in the guild bank.
  4. Revelry officer: To plan non-raiding stuff for people.

We went back and forth as to whether they needed an officer rank, since really only the banker needs different permissions.  However, we decided that a different rank would help new people identify officers and prevent confusion.

Volunteer Underlings.  Each officer can have volunteer underlings.  For example, the raid coordinator is not going to lead all the raids.  The raid coordinator is going to work with the volunteer raid leaders (probably 2-3) to make sure that every raid has a leader, that rostering is done in a timely manner, that loot lists are synched up, and that the rotation system is being recorded accurately (i.e. writing down who sat and who went) and being followed.

How are Officers selected?  A vote.  People volunteer for the spots, we all vote on it.  It’s a secret ballot sent to 2 independent guildies who are not volunteering for any officer job.  (Why 2?  To make sure the count is accurate.)

Other Officer Constraints.  We were concerned about officer slacking or officer cliquishness, so we instituted the following safeguards.

  • Terms of 4 months.  People can be reelected for as many terms as people vote for them.
  • We’re going to prevent couples from being BOTH officers.  One of them is fine.  But we’re trying to get diversity in the officer group.
  • No officer forums.  No officer chat.  Well, there is an officer chat but everyone has access to it, so every once in a while we say “HAY GUZY IM TALKING IN DARK GREEN”
  • Decisionmaking will still be made by the guild at large.  The officers are only there to handle day-to-day crap.  So the officers will not be instituting a new loot system or any other such decree.

QQ Box.  Here’s how officers differ from your average people who volunteer to do specific jobs, like volunteer to be raid leaders.  They have to deal with the QQ box.  The QQ box is an email address to which we send complaints – and it is forwarded to all the officers.  Then it’s their problem.  I’m not entirely sure how they’re going to handle the QQ, but that’s not my problem.  (This is to prevent all QQ going to Alas.)

Recruiting.  Since we’re getting a bit bigger, we should probably, uh… have a system for recruiting.  What we decided is if a recruit can get 3 guild members to vouch for him/her, that’s good enough for us.  That way, it’s not really an application or a vent interview or anything that formal.  The recruit just needs to have conversations in some manner with 3 guildies, be it in-game, over IM, in vent, or on the forums.  (Note: if one member of a couple vouches for a member, the other one cannot.  It has to be 3 semi-independent members.)

And the Winner Is…

3 of the 4 spots went to people by default because of lack of competition or the no-couples rule.  We’re voting on the 4th spot now.  How anticlimactic.


Effing Officers — 14 Comments

  1. I think this sounds really healthy and unique. I look forward to hearing more about how it works for you guys and I’m glad to hear your numbers and the guild itself are still growing!

  2. Good plan! We have officers but a very flat organization in our guild (and 2 ten-person teams), each of us pretty much takes care of one responsibility and it works out very well. I’d be interested to hear how the QQ box works out for you though, that sounds like a good idea!

    Urgh… qq…. it makes me a sad panda

  3. Interesting!

    Do you plan to keep your raiding as a top down managed thing when you really start having a second group? In my guild, the raids are run by raid leaders totally independently of guild officers. We have to work things out between our raids and there is some competition but I think it helps foster the feeling that there’s not an A team and a B team, there’s just this group, that group, and that other group that why are they even there, seriously, can’t you just call them part of the Sunday group since it’s all the same people just on alts?

    • I’m not sure. Thankfully the raid coordinator gets to work that out and I get to… not think about it. I suspect that the groups will be very much shifting since people go on vacation and stuff. Of course, we also have some raiders taking breaks, so the 2 group thing may never happen.

      • Whoever is the raid coordinator needs to set one thing down right off: no overlap, ever, between raid times. Not even the same days. It makes it impossible for people to fill in on alts. And there will be more and more alts over time! My guild had a Sun/Mon raid. Then Reversion and I started ours on Fri/Sat. It was great, we could have overlaps and fill ins… then the core of the Sun/Mon group added a Fri/Sat alt run to their schedule and boom, my alt raider pool dried up.

  4. I really don’t understand the concept of a ‘revelry’ officer. Granted, I’m they guy who’s against mandatory fun events at work. I don’t want to go to a picnic, have a young professional’s drink social, etc. I’m at work to work.

    Now don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great that someone is coming up with things to do – and as long as they aren’t mandatory – who cares. What bothers me is that someone would feel the need for this position to exist, which means that there’s someone out there who is upset that nobody is planning ‘other things’ for the guild to do. If you want to run Ulduar for a rusted proto-drake – put it together yourself. Don’t wait for someone to organize it for you. Want to get some alt lowbies together for a run? DO IT.

    Good luck with it though. Sounds like an interesting experiment if nothing else.

    • I’m with you on this one. But there are enough people who like these shenanigans that people thought a non-raiding-event coordinator was necessary. No, they are not mandatory. I hate “fun runs.” I will poke out the eye of anyone who tries to get me to attend.

      • I think a few things are being ignored here. One is that not all guild events are in the pursuit of frivolous achievement points. It was, after all, a guild event that got us the helpful perk of fish feasts this expansion. I also ran a rather successful fund raiser as a guild event that was well received and needed for the flagging funds for guild repairs (back in Wrath).

        The other thing is that decent to really good events can take a lot of effort to put together. To poo poo on events as a whole is to disrespect the time and effort put in by the coordinator on the some of the trickier or more elaborate events. Again, I reference the fishing extravaganza. Those Jeopardy boards didn’t write themselves and I didn’t take the gold awarded as prizes from anywhere other than my own pocket.

        Even some in-game achievement hunting (like getting war bears) can be a complete pain in the ass to coordinate and put together.

        I don’t think anyone out there is ‘upset’ that they don’t have a cruise director telling them what to do. I do think it’s overly dismissive to say guild events aren’t valuable to a guild.

    • To clarify: part of the reason we added this was to make sure we offered something to the non-raiders. There was some dissent as to whether we wanted to do that or not, since we are first and foremost about the raiding, but our non raiding population has grown a lot so in the end we decided to go with it.

      While we’re on the subject, I hate mandatory fun events, but since I quite like optional ones, I think it should work out okay. :)

  5. Seems like a lot of added bureaucracy where it might just be better to boot the QQer, especially frequent QQers.

    I’m of the mindset that if the person is complaining, it may just be venting if they’re actively looking to change things, then maybe the guild isn’t right for them. There are a lot of guilds out there, one is bound to suit them or if not, there are a lot of people out there, maybe you can form your own guild?

    If it’s loot related my stance is generally that it will drop again or something better will come along next content patch/expansion. No use getting bent out of shape about it (coming from a FL raiding Hunter who still has a blue heroic 2h weapon). Gear is even less important than people realize. Yes, it helps, but it doesn’t help a player not be an ass. That’s up the player and those are the players you want.

    I’m guessing the QQ box might not work for hot-headed QQs which might happen on the spot… or maybe you’ll see some dark green text saying, “Sec, I’m typing up an email,” mid-raid. :) I’ve found that once someone is used to venting to a given person, they’ll continue to do so but hey, if it works – awesome.

    • The QQ box is MOSTLY for legitimate complaints. And if the person has to send an email, he or she will think really hard whether it’s worth it. Example of something that might go in the QQ box: offensive jokes in gchat.

  6. I really like that structure idea. I occasionally hear of guilds with voted-in officers, but I never get to hear more details. It makes sense to me though. If most companies and NGOs are led by the board of directors format, why not guilds?

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