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We have a Tabard: I could teach you, but I'd have to charge

Looking for a guild? Well, you can join ours! We have a tabard and everything! Check back for Amanda Dean talking about guilds and guild leadership in We Have a Tabard.

It's so nice to run a raid when everyone is up to snuff on their characters and can focus entirely on what their doing. Unfortunately there seems to be at least one person who is not at the top of their game. Either the healer that's standing in fires or the DPS that can't fight their way out of a paper bag. They're not bad people and they mean well, but they are better cheerleaders than raiders. What's a raid leader to do?

I like to help people out and give people a shot, but there's only so much that I can do. At some point I have to consider the needs of the other nine or people in the raid over the needs of the single player. I was leading ToC 10 with a Hunter pulling 1800 DPS and the entire raid averaging about 2700. We had a number of wipes, but low DPS was a contributing factor. I called out the DPS saying, "Guys, I really need to be seeing 3K DPS." The 1800 Hunter said, "I don't think Hunters can pull 3K DPS." I nearly fell out of my chair.

My first response is to try to offer quick suggestions for how to resolve an issue (this is considerably easier when it's a raid awareness problem rather than a role problem). I feel genuinely awful when I have to remove someone from a raid, but the raid environment is not where one should learn his or her class.
This is a good time to be tactful. Usually I say something along the lines of "Hey man, let's run some heroics later, but I really need a little bit more for this raid." I always feel a pang of regret as I hit the "remove" button, but sometimes it just needs to be done. I'm always delighted when someone takes me up on the heroic offer, but more often than not they leave thinking I'm an elitist b***h.

While most people would love to be running Trial of the Grand Crusader, it's just not always feasible. Part of the Guild Master/Raid leaders job is to lead their team into appropriate content. Do a reality check for your team. The raids should be challenging and providing gear upgrades toward progression. If you take on too challenging of content, you may be able to get a boss or two down, but you're likely going to end up spending a lot of time and getting very frustrated. That time might be better spent gathering gear for a more achievable range. Naxx is a good training ground for raid awareness issues. With escalating gear levels it provides a safer environment for learning positioning, avoiding gas clouds, and other common raid issues.

I actually find that carrying guildies that aren't pulling their weight to be the most heart breaking. On the one hand, I'd like get gear on them on the other hand the whole team is suffering for their mistakes or insufficient play. One strategy I use is to recommend resources to struggling players. I rely on TankSpot videos for raid information. Generally I refer players to someone of their class for spec, rotation, and web resource information. Not everyone takes the advice, but many do. In the end the player and the guild wind up in a better position for the effort.

I truly wish there was a market for a school of raiding. I still believe that anyone can be a raider, some just need a little more patience and direction than others. But you don't just wake up one day and decide you're worthy of the endgame. Raiding takes practice, study, and perseverance.

WoW.com offers a plethora of information on guild leadership and guild membership. Be sure to check out Scott Andrew's Weekly Column Officer's Quarters and keep an eye on the community with Mike Schramm's Guildwatch.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Guilds, Raiding, (Guild Leadership) We Have a Tabard

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