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I’m a raider. That means I have to be on time, be prepared, and, most importantly, follow directions.

In return, though, there are a few things that I want from my leadership, whether in a raid or just in guild chat.

As a note, this is not a list of things I wish my guild leadership would do.  Some of these are things my guild is very good at – others, not so much.  Regardless, with any guild I’m a part of, this would be my wishlist.

Clarity

This is numero uno.  From clear guild policies to loot rules, things need to be spelled out for me to feel really comfortable.  A lot of this is work upfront when creating a guild – what loot system you use, if there are any exceptions, how to move up in guild ranks, etc.  Whatever your rules are, I’ll probably be okay with them – just let me know what they are.

This impacts the raid schedule, too.  For example, if, according to our raid calendar, we’re scheduled to clear Mount Hyjal on Monday, and Black Temple on Tuesday and Wednesday, what happens if we don’t clear Mount Hyjal on Monday?  Are we going into Black Temple on Tuesday as originally planned, or is it more important to clear Mount Hyjal first?  I don’t care either way – just let me know.

Maybe I’m more paranoid that most raiders, but before going into a T6 raid, I skim the bossfight tactics on our guild forum, WoWWiki, or shadowpriest.com – even if it’s a boss we’ve downed several times before.  Having a clear plan for the raid that night helps me prepare as a raider.

Negative Feedback

Auz, from Chick GM, caught me off guard in her post about interviewing recruits. She asks her recruits:

How you you like to receive feedback about your gameplay?
This is for me. Every single raider in my guild has received feedback from me. From “good job” to “dude quit that shit.” Each one of them prefers to get it in a different way. One of my shaman likes for me to call it out in vent. One of my priests gets very defensive if I call stuff out in front of others. One of my pallys likes to hear stuff right then in the raid. Another shaman would rather I give them a short instruction in the raid but always after the raid would like me to explain my feedback in detail. I will have to give you feedback and your preferred way has to be something I can actually do.

The first thing I thought was “Dear GOD this woman is a genius!”  Everyone doesn’t respond to feedback the same way.  Personally, I hate being called out on stuff in front of others.  I already know I screwed up, and I already feel like crap because I caused others to have a higher repair bill or just plain work harder to make up for my messup.  And you know what?  Other people probably know I screwed up too.

I want the negative feedback, but please give it to me in private.

Positive Feedback

Larísa of The Pink Pigtail Inn wrote earlier this week asking, “when did you last tell a fellow player that he’s great?”  It’s a great reminder to thank your fellow raiders (and leaders!) for all the hard work they do.

I LOVE positive feedback.  It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, and really makes me feel like I’m contributing to the success of the group. It doesn’t have to be lavish praise, either.  One of our raid leaders will consistently throw out words of praise like “great shackles,” “good job on that sheeping,” or “nice pickup on those adds, tanks.”  It truly gets the raid pumped up, and we feel like we’re on top of the world.  But the important thing is that this praise can’t be contrived, or tossed out like it’s a formula for success. This praise affects me because I know the raid leader means it.

Respect

Starman over at Casual Raid Leader noted in his recent post that communication can be essential to avoiding burnout.  He comes at the question from a raid leader perspective, but it’s definitely applicable to raiders.  If, for whatever reason, I am unable to raid, I’ll let my raid leader know.  In return, understand that I’m not flaking out – I just need a night off.  I’ll let you know what I need from you – just tell me what can happen, what can’t happen, and why. Mutual respect goes a long way in creating a great raid team.

Fun!

Yeah, remember that part of it?  It’s a game!  Okay, so this part isn’t strictly about communication, but it sure is important.  I love raiding with my guild/raid leaders, but some of my most fun with them happens when we do a 10 man we way outgear, stomp through a heroic dungeon, or just hang out in Vent or guild chat poking fun at each other.  We play this game to have fun, and even though you’re leading a guild, we want you to have fun too.

Communication Series

Communication Part 1: What I Want from Blizzard
Communication Part 2: What I Want from my Leadership
Communication Part 3: What Others Can Expect from Me

Photo Credits: lukasd2009

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