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Ready Check: Give your progression a shot in the arm

Ready Check helps you prepare yourself and your raid for the bosses that simply require killing. Check back with Ready Check each week for the latest pointers on killing adds, not standing in fire, and hoping for loot that won't drop.

Progression can be a challenge. Your team seems to be trying hard, you have enough people to raid on the appropriate nights, and it even seems like everyone has read up on the fights. However, when it comes "go time," you still don't seem to be moving forward.

The first step in resolving this problem is obviously to try and diagnose what's going wrong. That's a complicated enough issue for most folks. The bigger issue, though, is what you should do when it's no one's fault in particular. Maybe your raid doesn't have enough healers, or maybe it has too much melee. Maybe you're missing a vital raid buff, or perhaps not enough people are in advanced enough gear. What do you then? These things are clearly an issue to be resolved, but it's not a particular person's fault. You still need to address the problem.

Enlist everyone's help

One of the surest ways to knock down raid morale is to keep failing over and over without every talking about why. You can't leave 10 to 25 people wondering about what's going on. While you are the raid leader, it's every member's raid. Those members are spending their time and effort to raid just the same as you.

It's important, therefore, to enlist their help with whichever problem you've diagnosed. (I'm assuming, of course, that the problem isn't as simple as someone standing in fire.) If you've got too much melee, say so. "Folks," you might say, "I think our issue is that we don't have enough ranged to handle adds. We need to change our raid composition."

You might find yourself surprised when members of your raid group step up to solve the problem. People who might have been interested in switching raid roles will volunteer to do so, or at the very least, they might volunteer to step out of raids so that others may step in.

Being open and honest about these kinds of issue will "fire a shot across the deck." If no one volunteers to help you rectify the group's issue, then at least you've given warning that something will have to be done. It's always a good idea to avoid surprises. When the next raid comes around and you're forced to sit someone against their will, at least they'll understand why.

Set up "repair" nights

One of my first guilds had what we called "bootstrap" nights. Especially when a brand new character had hit the maximum level, a handful of the best-geared, most highly skilled players would get together with the new guy. Then we'd power-run heroics like they were going out of style. It was a decent way to get the new guy in the flow of things and get him a lot of gear very quickly.

The same principle could apply to your raid if you feel you're failing due to gear level. While it sucks to single someone out and tell them they need to improve their gear, that situation does arrive. However, once you've crossed that bridge, it's important that you reach out a hand to them with help. Make it productive conversation; instead of just saying, "You must improve," say instead, "We'd like to help you improve."

Then grab some folks who can make the heroic runs pleasant and quick, and get 'er done.

Don't be afraid of failure

Forum trolls and the internet at large has placed a significant stigma on failing. If you don't succeed -- preferably, the first time even trying -- then you fail, and that somehow makes you less than human. It's kind of an odd notion. This weird stigma around failing can be a serious detriment when you're trying to improve.

I prefer to use the Meet the Robinsons approach to failing: You learn from failing. Embrace that perspective, and make sure your failures are productive. While "learning experience" has become a little bit of a cliché, it's still true. Learn and grow.
Ready Check shares all the strategies and inside information you need to take your raiding to the next level. Be sure to look up our strategy guides to Cataclysm's 5-man instances, and for more healer-centric advice, visit Raid Rx.

Filed under: Ready Check (Raiding)

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