MOST GUILDS FAIL. 60% die off within 3 months. 90% die within 6 months. Less than 5% last over a year.
Here are the ten most common reasons "WHY" guilds FAIL:
I. The LEADER is a power hungry ego-maniac:
-If- you are starting a guild simply to "be in charge" of it, I would suggest not bothering starting a guild at all, because that is the #1 reason so many guilds DIE: it's that their leader started the guild, simply to be "IN CHARGE" of 'a guild' and to boss people. The best guilds are ran by people that actually enjoy helping other people. Immature ego-maniacs usually have no idea how much work is involved with running a "SUCCESSFUL" guild, that LASTS any amount of time. If you have a "BAD", UNFAIR", "LAZY", or "power-hungry" leader, a guild WILL DIE.
To avoid this: A guild should be run by several people that SHARE the work, -AND- SHARE the authority, AND ENJOY helping other people.
II. Too many of your MEMBERS are whiny lazy brats:
If you have a lot of immature and lazy members that demand everything from you, but NEVER give anything back (or do very little), eventually YOU will get tired of doing ALL (or almost all) of the work, THEN THE GUILD WILL DIE.
To avoid this: Make sure EVERYone understands that they absolutely must help their guild weekly by giving 10% of their online gaming time BACK to their guild (they can help with: recruitment, help other members, help members on the guild message board, organize activities, etc). Make sure that they all understand that a guild is "not a magical refrigerator" on the internet. The people that help MORE, should get MORE authority (or "say") in the guild. Please be fair and give the "workers" their "EARNED AUTHORITY". Make sure EVERYone knows "what is expected OUT of them" and "what to expect FROM the guild", -BEFORE- they join your guild. Basically, each member should have a "guild job".
III. You let a troublemaker into the guild:
NEVER let a person into your guild JUST because he is a "very good player." EVERY person has to be a "friendly person" or you do NOT want them. You DO -NOT- WANT JERKS in your guild. Sometimes, some of the best players (not all), are the most arrogant self-centered asstards on the planet, and all they ever do is think about THEMSELVES, and not about the guild. A troublemaker will go on to KILL a guild, because of their rude uncompromising behavior, "lack of teamwork", and nasty attitude. Fun and FRIENDS, are ALWAYS more important than winning. It's better to play by yourself, then be in a guild that is a huge collection of troublemaking morons and/or powerhungry schemers.
To avoid this: Simply talk to the people before you let them in your guild. Invite them to an 'interview' to see what they want out of a guild. You can tell them "what will be expected out of them" and "what to expect from your guild". Its always a lot easier to NOT let a troublemaker in, then it is to kick him/her out. You should give TRY OUTS to new guys, and screen the jerks. Note, not all great players are bad people, some are actually among the nicest people in the world.
IV. A FIGHT starts, that snowballs out of control:
NO ONE IS PERFECT, therefore EVERYone must COMPROMISE from time to time. If any group of people are to get along, people have to compromise once and a while. Any time you get a bunch of humans together, there is going to be "DISAGREEMENTS". If even loving "FAMILIES" have fights, you can guarantee that a guild, if it lives long enough and grows, will have a fight.
To avoid this: Do NOT let a fight grow or "EXPLODE" and kill your guild. If a fight starts between two people, suggest that THOSE two people (and a moderator) discuss it face to face, do not start a flame war on forums. If the fight is getting REALLY BAD, suggest to EVERYONE fighting, to "just take a break" and "cool off" for a couple of hours, a couple of days, of if needed 3 weeks. Sometimes simply saying "Let's just all sit down and play" will stop the fighting and SAVE your guild, remember that. It has been demonstrated that overall, most people are more loyal to their friends than their guild, and will leave if they do. Losing one or two prominent members over a trifle gone unchecked can set off a terminal chain reaction of "X left because Y left because Z left".
By having regular guild meetings, misunderstandings can usually be avoided. Communication between the leaders, and between the members and leaders is very important. I would recommend having scheduled monthly guild meetings for the guild. It helps prevent misunderstandings, and is also a good time to discuss issues and for members to offer new ideas too. Also don't forget to reward the guild's hard workers and keep them happy and give them "earned authority". It is EVERY MEMBERS' guild, not just the leaders' guild. Everyone should work a little, the ones that work the most, should have the most authority or "say", but it is ALL the members' guild and everyone should recognize that.
V. You FAILED to recruit any new members:
"A guild is like a sack of sand with a hole in at the bottom that is slowly losing it's contents."
People have and will always LEAVE guilds, no matter how good they are.
People leave for just about any reason you can think about. Family issues, auto accidents, unemployment, technical difficulties, boredom, failing grades, new responsibilities, people moving, misunderstandings, and of course FIGHTS, just to name a few.
To avoid this: You have to CONTINUALLY RECRUIT new QUALITY members if your guild is to survive. Make sure several LOYAL people in the guild spend some time recruiting each week. Be careful NOT to spam messages anywhere. Make someone responsible for this section of the guild, make sure that they are 100% loyal to your guild.
VI. Disloyal "guild-hoppers", backstabbers, and "Quit-a-thons":
One out of many ....."E Pluribus Unum".
Making a guild is the EASY part, holding a guild together is the HARD part.
Disloyal, bottom feeding, blood sucking, leeching "backstabbers", that go on to instigate "mutinies" or "quit-a-thons" can not be allowed around your guild at any time. Some backstabbers create disturbances simply so that they can recruit members away from their old guild once people start to quit. These "split-off guilds" always go on to be "flop-guilds". The reason is: people that are disloyal to your guild will also be disloyal to the "split-off" guild; mutineers NEVER stick together very long.
"Guild-hoppers" are people that join a guild, then leave it, then join another guild, then leave it, then join another guild, then leave it, etc, etc. "Guild-hoppers" never do any work and do not have any loyalty. "Guild-hoppers" are self-centered and only think of themselves. Usually they are whiners too. They seldom stay in a guild for more then two weeks, and often don't stay more than a couple of days.
To avoid this: If someone leaves your guild, do NOT allow them to rejoin. Exceptions may be made for long-standing esteemed members taking a temporary leave of absence, but this is up to you. Make it clear your guild has a one-way exit, not a revolving door. It should take all the leaders' authorization to let someone in your guild, or to kick someone out of your guild. This will make your guild stable and prevent it from being too easy to get in. Do not make your guild TOO easy to get into, that way members will VALUE your guild's MEMBERSHIP. You should give interviews to new applicants, and a trial period before making someone a full member. Make getting into your guild a special time that is valued.
Do not let a guild-hopper in your guild; if someone says he has been in 16 guilds, you do NOT want him in your guild, he is a fickle guild-hopper. If someone is in another guild already and wants to jump ship, they have ZERO loyalty to your guild, do NOT let them in. Telling the low-lifes "NO" or "GO AWAY", is the job of the leaders. Be a STRONG and FAIR leader and everyone will respect you for it.
VII. Someone thinking the "GUILD" is a "GAME":
A "guild' is not a "game". A guild is made up of REAL people with REAL feelings. You might be looking at your monitor when you type or talk to a player a thousand miles away on the internet, but there actually is a REAL person on the other end of that conversation, typing and talking to you while looking at their monitor, they are both REAL PEOPLE. Just because you can't touch them, does not mean they are not real breathing people that should be treated with dignity and fairness, if possible.
To avoid this: Act civil to people and respect all people, if they will let you. Play games for fun, but dont "play with people" by mistreating them.
IX. "Net-Mosquitoes" harassing and wasting too much time:
"Net-mosquitoes" are troublemaking morons that cause trouble simply to cause trouble (and for the lulz). They have NO life and have been known to hound guilds that they could not get in or were kicked out of, for months sometimes. "Net-mosquitoes" waste their life trying to ruin others' fun. They are a waste of life, a waste of time, a waste of fun, don't let them waste yours.
To handle this: Report any harassment and file a ticket. If the net-mosquito just does one thing, simply ignore the buffoon and let him get his "attention" from his momma.
X. TOO MUCH TIME WASTED ON THE GUILD WEB PAGE:
No guild ever died because of an ugly guild web page, but a LOT of guilds DIE because their leaders spent WAY TOO much time working on their guild web page, instead of using that time leading, or recruiting, or having guild meetings to promote good communication in their guild.
A web page is simply a TOOL, a "web page" is NOT the guild. A guild is about the people, a web page doesn't help you enjoy the game, but "guild members" do. A "web page" is simply a "piece of paper on the internet".
To avoid this: Make a bare-bones web page and/or simple forum to serve your guild for the first 3 months, then, after 3+ months, if your guild is still alive, worry about "dressing up" the web page. Worry about a dot.com later still, if your guild survives 9+ months.
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