7 Habits of Highly Effective Guildmasters

Sometimes, MMO players (and their avatars) qualify for the minimum requirements in forming a guild within the current game they’re playing. Be it level requirements, money or item requirements, etc – more often than not, most will say “Hey! I can start my own guild now… let me just hop on over to the NPC and then I’ll invite my friends”.

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Sadly, this process is just the start of a long and ardous journey. A journey which is not for the faint of heart, which calls for dedication, leadership and a HUGE amount of your time. So, if you are forming your guild to be competitive and have no idea what you’re getting into, this post of mine might help…

What follows are 7 tips or habits that GdMs (I use this abbreviation to separate it from the “GM” norm) can emulate:

1.  Have A Vision – First, ask yourself the question “Why am forming this guild???”. The answer can be one of many choices: to “dress up” your characters (of yourself and your members), to compete in PVP or in a tournament, to become the best in the server, or simply to “kick ass” (*hey – that’s a goal). Whatever your answer is, it must be clear to YOU and your members. Everyone must share the common vision or else your guild is doomed to failure. It would be wise to discuss this with your “core group” even before you form your guild.

I once wrote a post about how to organize your guild in my old blogger address.

2.  Write Things Down - whether you collaborate online in an official guild forum, e-mail list or blog it’s best to write things down. Better make sure that your medium is a private one if you don’t want your secrets to fall into the hands of the enemy. It would also be good to invest in a notebook (the paper kind, not the PC) with a calendar where you can keep track of goals, guild treasures, expenses and other unfinished quests or raids. Share this with your lieutenants and your other leaders.

3. Lead by example – if you don’t want your members to be late for a raid or instanced quest, you gotta be the first one there. Don’t want them using 3rd party programs or cheating, then you should be the first one to condemn such acts.  Remember, followers will (duh) “follow”. As a GdM you should be setting the standards. What you do (ingame and iRL) reflects not just on you but on your guild as well.

4. Have Rules - As part of Habit#3 above, having a guild “Code of Conduct” (whether a simple or complex one) is a must. You should set rules on membership, responsibilities, and sanctions and penalties for offenders. There will be Chaos if there are no rules. And as uber-GdM, it is up to you again to enforce these rules. Of course, you will have your fellow leaders to help you along the way. My personal motto on this is to be “firm yet fair”. Easier said than done… but striving to follow the rules will go a long way to keeping order within your ranks and avoiding factions and politics.

5.  Be There When They Need You -

“Ok… we’re up against a bad-ass guild… but where is our fearless leader???”

“Ahh… I think he went his mom to buy groceries. He won’t be logging in”

I’m not saying that you frag your mom and avoid shopping altogether! The point is; to be there for your group when they need you. Remember, I told you that when you took this job it WILL require a LOT of your time. If you are not prepared for this, you will have some troubles along the way. Sometimes you cannot say no to personal events or schedules. Try to come up with a solution by appointing a “next in line” to take over the chores for you. If you communicated all tasks well ahead of time, this wouldn’t be a problem.

6. Know the Game – As a leader people will look up to you and PM you for a LOT of questions. Either you’re a super dork and know all the trivial things like how much a certain item wieghs or you take some time do your homework and research about your game on the web. You can appoint the “rules lawyers” within your group to this for you (They’ll love you for and be honored, hehe). But you must know at least the major features of your game to be an “expert” so that you can help your new members as well.

7.  Treat Everyone Fairly - this is a tough one. This is easier said than done. Sometimes you will have “favorites” within your group (heck, you’re only human). But don’t be unfair and give all the rare drops to that dude 3 weeks in a row! Your members are not dumb and they WILL see through that. You have to be fair in all your actions. Loot division is central to most guilds. Everyone must know the rules to this (see Habit#4) to avoid squabling and whining.


I hope that aspiring and current GdMs learned a little something from the above. Let me leave you with a  quote:

“Great things are not done on impulse, but by small things done together” - Van Gogh

Best of luck in your guild(s)!


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  • http://www.clan-Lotus.co.nr priss

    got it all. XD

  • Unnamed

    VERY nice tips. :)

  • distrust

    ooh nice. that will help us. thanks! :D

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  • trod

    wow all my plan is in 7 habbit! il do my best to become great leader

  • randomguy

    also add in…wak maxado maging perfectionist…nakakasira ng enjoyment sa paglalaro!!!

  • Khanum

    Treat Everyone Fairly is the best

  • http://bloggers-me.blogspot.om Ryan

    Yeah! But different guild leaders should also adapt to the different attitudes and styles of their members.

  • http://bloggers-me.blogspot.com Ryan

    Yeah! But different guild leaders should also adapt to the different attitudes and styles of their members.

    IT’s not just purely leaders but also members, we have to take vryone into consideration.

  • http://gmtristan.com GM T

    yep!Very true

  • headtrip

    I could relate to this.

    I had my hand in creating one of the most (in)famous guilds in ragnarok. Ragnarok was my first MMORPG (aside from magewar) and I was hooked. I started with a guild for my friends and envisioned a brotherhood of sorts. We had a succesful run until my buddies felt that we needed the numbers and everything fell apart after that. I lost control and gave up.

    Lesson 1: Never lose control of your top managers (or guildmembers)

    I transferred to a new server and recreated the guild and went on to make a name for ourselves. I managed to keep everything under control until another guild offered to merge with us to create what would later become one of the most notorious (feared? respected?) guilds ever. I thought up a name, designed the logo and tried to keep things in order. Sadly my goal of a brotherhood was quickly lost when everyone got drunk with power. Extensions where made, a-holes got recreuited and I decided that I dont want to be a part of anything that goes against my ideals.

    Lesson 2: Don’t lose sight of your goals.

    I created a new guild (or recreated my first guild) and things went really well. There was brotherhood and camaraderie at last, we became a true guild. No illusions of grandeur, no selfish grandstanding but it was fun. Then real life got in the way, I did not get the chance to stay online a lot. The guild disbanded.

    Lesson 3: Being a leader is going to need a lot of your time.

    Now I’m a guild leader of sorts albeit in a real life setting. I got to my position in under 1 year and 6 months. I learned my lessons. I owe it all to MMORPG’s. Like I always say, there is more to gaming than games.

  • denxiaoping

    yeah, pro kadalasan, one of the prominent goals ng mga guilds ay mging one of the best in game, kya nga sila nagpapalakas ng husto. and i know some guilds n hnd mapigilan ang mandaya pra agad sumikat at umangat sa rank, hayaan nyu sila, mkikilala sila hnd sa srili nilang pmamaraan.

    pro meron dn nmn tlganag hnd lng ung 7 habits ang offer nila, pati friendship ksma n s bundle n un.

    mejo mhirap tlga humanap ng guild n mgu2stuhan mo, pro sna mki cooperate din ang members kc ung ibang memebers wlang paki sa nangyayari sa guild, bsta lng may masabing meron syang guild eh malakas n sya, ok na, mali un. guild nga dba, many members put into one, collectively guild ang tawag dun, or clan nmn sa ibang games.

    it is the guild leaders/officers and members who are responsible for the molding and bearing of responsibilities to create a pleasant or if not so a well dedicated group to establish a harmonious relationship with the fellow players. dpt nga ang virtue natin d2 ay “WE SHOULD DO THIS TOGETHER”

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