Thursday, June 25, 2009

Essential Tools for Guild Officers: Part One

Hi guys! Did you miss me?

I could go into what I've been doing instead of blogging, but really, that would bore us all. So instead, I'll jump into what I hope will become a semi-useful series of posts about what it takes to be a successful Officer.

I have been an Officer in xeno for 1103 days. Which is 157 weeks. Or 26,472ish hours. Or in simple terms, just over 3 years. ( is fun).

Within a few days I had read through the threads of the Officer forums on our site. One of them was the contact information of the other Officers, who all used an instant messaging program called "gtalk". The rest is history. Hundreds of thousands (possibly an exaggeration, but not by much) of chats later, this is still our main method of communication. Sure, during a raid, we use the in-game O chat. Sure, I have the cell phone numbers of almost everyone so that I can contact them by text message if I'm going to be late or, gasp, the electricity/internet go down. But for day to day communication about what we want to see happen with the guild, we use gtalk.

Gtalk is google's free instant messaging service. It can be downloaded and installed on your computer or smart phone, or if you are in a place where that is a no-no, it can be accessed through Which is what makes gtalk perfect for government employees like me. Well except for that small feeling of guilt I have occasionally, but that's easily dispelled when I think about the fact that I could be on ebay or some other website wasting time instead of just discussing guild matters.

When it came time for me to upgrade my old Motorola Razr, my main criteria in choosing a new phone was making sure it was capable of running gtalk. I've had my Blackberry for almost a year now, and I have never regretted purchasing it. Being able to chat with my wow friends keeps me sane when I'm at zoo court waiting on another annoying defense attorney.

It's not uncommon for me to have 2-3 chat windows open with different officers. Of course, we're not always discussing the intricacies of the three tank strategy for Ignis. Most of the time, we're just chatting about various things. But when we are in the midst of a heated debate about policy I know I can hash out my thoughts with any of them before posting on our forums. And, in my opinion, that easy means of communication is one of the things that keeps us going.

So, whether you choose to use gtalk or some other instant messaging program, contact both in and out of the game is essential for Officers in a guild. You need to be able to speak to each other about the big things and the little things and just the every day gripes that will develop. Otherwise you grow apart and start to think you're in this all alone.