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  #1  
Old 10-24-2006, 06:38 PM
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What to do about a “Bad Seed”?
What to do about a “Bad Seed”?

This affects all guilds, large and small. That is one of the hard part’s of being a guild leader, when do you decide that a person is harming the guild as a whole more than he/she is helping the guild? Do you run a dictatorship or a democracy? The way a guild is set up can have a lot to do with how long it will last and how successful and prestigious it will be. How do you deal with the troublesome person when a problem first arises? How many chances are you going to give out? All of these are tough questions, if you let a bad seed stay in to long, it can begin to crumble the guild from the inside out planting seeds of discontent in the very core of the guild infecting players like a virus. So can you decipher which person has malicious intent before it is too late?


*Disclaimer* I have never run a guild, but have been a part of several and it seems the most effective are run by driven people with a strict set of guidelines. People have to be held accountable for breaking rules for a guild to be successful in my opinion. Thoughts and comments from actually guild leaders(That means you roxi!)
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Old 10-24-2006, 07:56 PM
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I've run into more than my fair share of 'bad seeds' over the years in the guilds I've run (or helped run) - and in my experience it comes down to the type of guild you have as to how these things get handled.

From a family guild standpoint, these people are often left to fester for far longer than they probably should be, primarily because despite their 'issues', they tend to have a close-knit bunch of friends that are supporters and have adopted the 'if he/she goes, we go' concept. For good or ill - this has to be taken into account and weighed against which has the largest negative impact on the guild and family environment you are trying to promote.

In a hard-core raiding guild - it is often a lot easier to take care of this. People come and go in those so frequently that it is extremely easy for those running the show to simply 'cut their losses' in the event of guild drama ... heck, raid guilds are FUELED by drama in many cases.

In my case - I have had maybe two instances (casual guild) where I actually punted someone out.. but it was always after weeks on my part trying to work through the problem with them, talking to them, talking to them with other officers, etc. Family guilds seem to take the biggest burden with malcontents - of course, they also get the greatest reward of loyality from those that play with people because they care about each other.
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Old 10-24-2006, 09:40 PM
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Running a guild is like running a business. You need to "fire fast and hire slow"; meaning that if you put in the work up front before accepting a guild member, then you're less likely to have such an issue.

But you will have this issue eventually, and if your guild has clear expectations of it's members, and a consistent process for applying consequences, then it's very easy to nip it in the bud.

The most difficult part is when a member of the guild's "inner council" is the bad seed. In this case, you're likely to have a guild split because of the relationship tree; they'll take their whole branch with them if they leave. You just have to be able to let them go, if it's the fair thing to do.

In general, if you're consistent, fair, and communicate openly, people will respect that, even if you boot their friend. Most people know when their own friends are full of ... it.
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Old 10-25-2006, 04:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sevan View Post
Running a guild is like running a business. You need to "fire fast and hire slow"; meaning that if you put in the work up front before accepting a guild member, then you're less likely to have such an issue.

But you will have this issue eventually, and if your guild has clear expectations of it's members, and a consistent process for applying consequences, then it's very easy to nip it in the bud.

The most difficult part is when a member of the guild's "inner council" is the bad seed. In this case, you're likely to have a guild split because of the relationship tree; they'll take their whole branch with them if they leave. You just have to be able to let them go, if it's the fair thing to do.

In general, if you're consistent, fair, and communicate openly, people will respect that, even if you boot their friend. Most people know when their own friends are full of ... it.
I agree with Sevan... I could not have said it better myself ...and Mugglewump also sheds some much needed light on the issues with a "family" based guild...

It can be hard letting go of the "family" member that causes problems... you want to be helpful and supportive and nurturing... but in the end you realize that most people refuse to change, and removing them for the good of the Guild becomes the only solution.

Some of the most damaging personalities in a Guild can also be the most charismatic... and some players who seem very apt to fill a leadership role can become more than you expected...

You can't prevent situations like these from occurring... no matter how prepared or careful you think you are, someone will manage to slip through the cracks... the key is to recognize the problem early on and minimize the damage.

That is the best advice I can give anyone.
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Last edited by Charbroil : 10-25-2006 at 05:02 PM.
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Old 10-26-2006, 04:50 AM
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Cut off the boil before it infects your entire arm.

I'm sorry, but I've seen too many guilds destroyed by one horrid member.

Why would I want to lose three or four great people over one annoyance who causes drama and won't change?

I have a no drama policy in the guild I lead. And three strikes (or less, depending on the offense) and you're out.
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Old 10-26-2006, 04:56 PM
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When I led my monarchy in AC1.. i was pretty quick to pull the /kick trigger.

Some people got one warning.. others got none.

My philosophy at the time simply had to do with what created the least amount of hassles for the guild and ultimately for me.
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Old 10-26-2006, 07:29 PM
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When I led a guild in WoW, we never really had a problem picking up "bad seeds" because of the "getting to know you" process that we formed. Since the guild was mostly officered by my RL friends, we had final say on who came in, who didn't, and we built a fantastic community on that. Only once did we royally screw up, but we found that an idiot can only stay with a group of friendly and intelligent individuals for so long before they weed themselves out. I believe good community to be the best anti-bad seed tool there is. I've never been a fan of /gkick unless really necessary.

I think S1's age-limits in most games help alot, from what I've seen. I believe S1 to have the type of community that won't allow bad eggs. At least, that was the case in SWG and CoV.
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Old 10-28-2006, 12:08 AM
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maybe its because I have never a guild but you can't be quick to react, I mean people have the bad days, some people have bad weeks. An like any good relationship there misunderstandings and you can only grow if people tell you about your faults, so I agree you have to kill cancer as soon as it starts to grow, but you have to first identify that it is cancer and not just growing pains (that imagery was working so well and just didn't end right, I hope you can all get my drift).
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Old 10-28-2006, 03:25 AM
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Well said! Good relationships are based on misunderstandings, people's days sometimes become weeks and kill new people like cancer. I hear you loud and clear j/k
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Old 10-29-2006, 03:19 PM
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Good topic!

I think Sevan hit the nail on the head. Fire fast, hire slow. In any of the guilds I've lead (including non MMORPG games), I've always spent a ridiculous amount of time interviewing people and find it to be the most effective strategy in dealing with the bad apples, that is--the best way to deal with them is to never let them in. Often enough a simple conversation is sufficient to see what they're really interested in.

In SWG there was this one kid who desperately wanted to join--so I talked with him alot, and it was obvious that he was young and not well suited for the guild. So I did the acid test..mhwha, I said 'talk to me in exactly two weeks and if you still want to join, we'll talk again', and I encouraged him to group with as many S1 as possible. He did, and was surprisingly persistent--after two weeks, we talked, I said 'come back in one week'--surely that would work. Nope..a week later, on cue, there he was. Long story short, he followed all my suggestions, tried very hard, and ultimately was turned away.

The moral of the story? Sometimes your best just isn't good enough. mwha...just kiddding.

Ok! To address the real question--say someone got through the interview and turned out to be trouble--which has happened to me a handful of times, what to do!

I think rules need to be extremely clear upon entrance of the guild, I always had members memorize the 3 rules I had--fairly simple, and repeat them to me before entering. I also always explained the purpose of those rules and their importance to the guild, and so in the event of someone breaking them, I could skip the "well maybe you didn't read #3 very well..." conversation. I don't believe in the instant axe without some sort of due process,(which can be a 5 minute conversation), but certainly there are cases where someone needs to be booted immediately.

As far as dictatorship and democracy--I'm 100% for Republican Democracy! A federalism where the 'people' have very little power directly but those in power are in their position via merit and have the respect of the people, and so represent the 'peoples' nterests. I believe in a ruling body, not a monarchy, but that ruling body must remain fairly small. So while I support a monarch with peer advisors, I don't agree with a unilateral monarch. Viva la huelga! Si se puede!

Anyway! In summary-- best dealt with by initial screening, followed by extremely clear guild guidelines, and in the case of a violation, immediately talk to the person and let them know where they stand. In the event of a termination, barring clear cases, get a second opinion and let loose the hounds of war!

Esis
Last edited by Esis : 10-29-2006 at 03:44 PM.
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