Recruiting musings

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Recruiting musings

PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 2:37 pm

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I see no real reason to "turn on" recruiting in any active way, at least not at this time.

However, FFXI is a social game, by nature, and people may ask, or you may be so taken with someone's personality that you want them to hang around, so, I figure its time to have an open discussion about it.

I see some obvious guidelines:

1) The two-voucher system has always worked well, at least when I was in a group ;) We have to like each other, or at least be able to tolerate each other, so, get someone else to chat with the person. Someone from the "core" list of folks (so this means that a voucher couldn't be, say, two new guys), those that have been here for a while. That won't be a problem today, since the only members we have are existing SSX. Recruiting and vouching is a responsibility, and you should take it seriously. Remind new people of the forums, of our community, actually make sure they fit in or don;t bother being a 2nd voucher ;) And two vouchers is a minimum, the more people they talk to the better. If I have a good job candidate in, and I really like them, I go GET other people in the office to talk to them. This place is special to us, we need to preserve it.

2) New people MUST sign up on the forums. Period. If they are not in it for the community, we cannot consider them members, and like it or not, this is a huge part of the community. Now, alot of folks play on consoles, or play without windowers, so we can give people some grace period, say 48 hours, then, if they still haven't, it's pearl breaking time. So if you pearl someone, you shoudl post their character name in a new thread here, and have them reply to it. Then we'll add them to the roster.

3) Three strikes and you're out. There's alot to be said for "hey, he's a nice guy" but if the "nice guy" screws up, pisses people off, or whatever, 3 times, they're out. Period. Maybe if they go away for a month and get their act together, but if the person can't twig to the "don't do that" three consecutive times, there really shouldn't be a need for a discussion. I should probably be the only one to actually break pearls, though. I expect some discussion here.

4) People should not beg, we're not a PL service, or a bank. If you are new to the game, I'll give you some gil to start out because I am a nice guy, and I think that seed money makes the game far more enjoyable. But people who have been in the game for a while don't get handouts ;) Same goes for PL service. I am a 66 RDM, if I come out to help you, I am doing it because I want to help. Sometimes FFXI players see mages and automatically assume we are for rent, and see mages in a LS and assume that we are here for the pleasure of the members.

People should join for the community, the potential friendship, and because it's good to have people you can count on to play with. If you meet someone who can handle those terms, by all means, lets get them in here.

Special note about multiclanning: I am dropping all responsibilities I had in other shells. You guys are my first priority and always will be. I have dropped all but the 7th pearl and the RPLS pearl, as I do not see a conflict of interest and its a good way to get ahold of people to help (7th) and the RPLS is pure entertainment. If it ever seems to be a conflict of interest, someone should call me on it. I'll drop them, no questions. Folks can explore other shells at their leisure, there are guild shells (crafting), job specific shells (job advice for say, BST) and Role Playing Shells (like the one I am in). There are even friends and family shells (any more the 7th really qualifies as that). When I am on, I am on the SSX pearl. The ones you should try and avoid are the ones that operate more like a real guild, that will create a conflict. I think the only multiclanning rule we can have here is: sackholders can't be sackholders in other "guild" LS. And we'll have to be on our honor for now. This will probably come back to bite me, but we're pretty casual and a bunch of newbies at the moment, so I doubt we'll have alot of clan jumping.

Thoughts?
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 4:22 pm

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Ok. These are my basic recruitment guidelines I used during interviews with potential recruits in WoW. These questions are the milestones I would use during the interview, but bear in mind other questions sometimes sprout from their replies, ones you cant predict, varying from recruit to recruit because of different answers.

Basically, at the core of it, my usual interview went something like this:

1. Whats important in a guild to you? What do you look for in a guild?
2. Why does the SSX appeal to you? (More often than not this will be the same answer as above, but I find it worthwhile to ask, as some applications surprise you by giving 'my friend is in it' and no other reason)
3. Why would you rather join our guild than any other? What makes us stand out? (as we certainly arent the only guild on the server with qualities previously mentioned, its never the case)
4. How important do you see endgame raids? (Potentially not so important here as we discussed on IRC, perhaps adaptable to 'How important do you see communication via forums, or efforts to promote community throughout the group?)
5. What people in the SSX, if any, are you already friends with? (I tended to gather other mod's opinions on these people before deciding in some cases, a person's friends can say a lot about them. Perhaps here just checking how many strikes the friend is on, if any)
6. Go over the no multi-clanning rule (and in this case the 'must register on forum' rule. Essential I get a committment from every recruit on this or its an automatic no from me.
7. Any questions they might have about the guild or the wider community.


That was basically my way of approaching recruit interviews. There are odd times when the answers given were perfect and they still got rejected, but thats usually because myself or Ava expressed feelings that something wasnt quite in place about them/their answers when we discussed their case after both had interviewed the recruit. Gut feelings essentially, and we've proven to be right in that approach in the past with people like Notinou's friend.

That approach worked out quite well for me in my stint at recruiting before we closed shop. Hopefully it'll be of some use here too.
"Perhaps this is what I have always wished for since that day. The loss and destruction of all. That's right, one must destroy before creating. In that case, if my conscience becomes a hindrance to me, then I will simply erase it. I have no other choice but to move forward....therefore!" - Lelouch vi Britannia/Zero, Code Geass: Hangyaku no Lelouch

Forever an eXile and proud of it!

PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 4:31 pm

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Great guidelines.

If we take it seriously, and care about quality over quantity, I think we'll do fine. It almost is like a job interview, people who join the SSX and stay, stay for years. Some of us have been playing together for going on 8 years.

That says something, I think, about the type of people we should accept into the fold ;)
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 6:35 pm

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As someone who has been activly in LS recrutiment and running an FFXI community I have a couple of things I would just like to add to this discussion:

Giving someone a pearl is a lot easier than breaking their pearl after the fact. If something comes up and you have to break someone's pearl it will cause drama. It's far better to screen them prior to pearling them. Play with them. Invite them to events. Play with them some more.

Linkshells don't have to be big. Don't feel presured to grow because you want to see a full page of names when you log on. Rushing the recruitment process leads to sloppyness and mismatched personalities.

The key to success is comunication. I like that you are all already on board with the idea that people HAVE to sign up for the forums here. Make sure that you understand the goals of new people and that they align with the goals of the LS.

Personal responsibility makes for a functional LS. Again, play with anyone you want to recruit. Check out their gear. Invite them to events. Signs of a good player in this game are things like up to date gear (doesn't have to be +1, but at least level and job approprieate). Proper use of food and items in fights. Understanding of their job. Showing up on time ready to roll, or comunicating with you if they are going to be late or if they can't make it. This is something I have often refered to as the "A-game" in my discussions with 7th Legion. To kick butt, you need everyone on top of their game. Parts functioning as a whole.

I've seen when these ideas come together and work, and I've seen when they were ignored and things fell apart.

I can really boil all of that down to one rule:

Play with people before pearling them. Big fights bring out a lot in people both in their competance as players and in their personality and how they interact with you.
Blarghl.

PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 6:43 pm

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Oh, I have no reservations about breaking pearls if someone is an idiot, I have my anti-drama stick (otherwise known as BD) just in case ;)
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 6:57 pm

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:lol: All I can do is share my personal experiences. For me, everytime I've kicked someone from an LS or broken a pearl it has been dramatic. People in the LS wanting to know why So-and-so was kicked. So-and-so sending me PMs and /tells. All in all not fun and something that could have been avoided by screening them before pearling.



I would also suggest checking out Eri's guidlines over on the Virtus forums:

http://www.virtus-asura.com

I really respect the way she and Nari run their LS. They have a very strong core group, every person in that shell is a good player (they have members at all levels), and on top of it all they are sweethearts.

My LS, Tenebrae, is tiny right now. I think there are fewer than 10 active players. We've talked about recruitment, and the consensus is we aren't going to be activly recruiting at this point. We are working on forming something like a high level strike team :D. In the future if we recruit, there are very specific things we are looking for and we are all aware that will limit our growth.

It's sticky. There isn't one way to play the game. There isn't one thing we all get out of the game. And there isn't one way to run an LS.
Blarghl.

PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 7:10 pm

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That's the idea of the "voucher" system. Its like a job interview. We're an odd bunch. A fairly large, but odd, bunch. If you join up with us, there's an expectation you are in it for the long haul ;)

We're, sadly, no strangers to drama. Its good advice though, and I think dovetails into my suggestions. We should run this like we run our other groups. Hopefully, the core folks will have learned from any of hte negative experiences in those other groups (WoW, NC, etc) and reinfrorced the positives.

The people who wear the pearl should be people we are proud of, and we want around. Just like the tags in any other game we play.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 8:18 pm

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Some recommendations i would make;

Recruiting - If you can, i would recommend using a similar system to that we have used in WoW as its proven to work very well in my eyes.
-Two people work together on any recruiting that is done, both speak to the recruit separately and ask them whatever questions you need to, mebbe play with them a little as well. Both of the recruiters can then talk to each other and decide whether or not they think said person is right for us, if they both agree then the recruit gets invited. If one thinks otherwise either play a little more with the recruit to get to know them a little better or turn them down.
Basically using the same recruiting methods you normally would but have 2 people working on it together. Since we started doing that in WoW we've had lots of really nice members imo, sure we've had a few bad eggs now and then but much much less than we used to have when recruiting was slacker. In a group the size of WoW:EU's thats v good i feel.

Forums - Like we did with the WoW group as well, don't hit the invite button till said person has taken the time to come here and signup, make it a recruitment to joining the FF group. You could also add to that and get them to come and say hello and introduce themselves as well. As said if they are joining us they should be part of the community here as well, this is a good start i think. Since we made registering on the forum a recruitment in WoW every single person that has joined the WoW group since we started it is registered on the forums before they even get invited.

I made a kind of recruitment guide type post on the CO forums a few months ago that i'll quote here just incase any of it is helpful since you're discussing recruitment as well. Though i expect a lot of it you'll all already know hehe. :)
SSX-MS wrote:My advice for recruitment would be,
Have a long chat with the person that wants to join and make sure they know all about us well before you let them join, make sure they understand what we're all about and that we are an entire community and not just any ol' guild. Rather than forwarding them to our "About SSX" page explain it to them in your own words. Make sure this is the kind of place they are actually looking for, maybe ask them what kind of guild they are looking for before you tell them about us.
Go on to a slightly personal level and see where they're from, how old they are, what interests they have.. Last of all see if they then have any questions they'd like to ask about the SSX.
You know its actually a real pleasure when you speak with someone who explains to you what kind of place they're looking for even before you've had a chance to tell them yourself, and the people that are really interested and start asking about our history, how we formed, how long we've been around etc. The peeps that really do show a genuine interest.

Arrange a time or place for you and some of your other guild members to team up with the person that is wanting to join, there's no need to invite them in to the guild to do this. As an example in both WoW and NC in the past we have invited recruits along to some of our dungeon raids, outpost wars or even just a little bit of mob hunting to play with the person before hand. It gives them the oppertunity to play along side us before we go ahead and join them and it gives us some first hand experience at playing with them and helps us get to know them a little better.

Sometimes people that ask to join you are really just trying to get in to any guild. Some have applied to join many other guilds and will join whichever they get accepted in to first. Don't invite them straight away, keep playing with them for this reason. Recruitment shouldn't be rushed, take your time, it doesn't matter if you don't actually invite this person for days maybe even a week or so after they originally asked to join. If the person really does want to be part of a place like this then they won't mind waiting, trust me.

Invite them to the forums to introduce themselves & say hello, again before you join them. Maybe make registering on the forums a requirement of joining like i suggested in another thread, the WoW:EU group has proved it works wonders, but thats your choice if you wanna do that too of course. ;)

Ask yourself a couple of questions before you hit the invite button, hopefully you'll be able to answer some of these after you've talked and played with them before.
Do you think this person is just after a guild no matter what type?
Do you believe this person is wanting to join us for the right reasons, to be part of a gaming community and not just to play with friends they have in the CO guild ingame or just because you might be a successfull guild in the game?
Do you see this person sticking around the forums or in other SSX games after they have stopped playing CO? Or do you think this person will disappear in to thin air never to be seen again?


[Edit]
Hope some of that was helpful in some way, if i think of anything else i'll be sure to post again heh. :)
"My name is Ozymandias, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 3:57 pm

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Everyone knows about the draconian rules that I have for stuff like this, hell most of this is based off of what I advocated for a number of years to be accepted as the norm across the entire SSX.

And breaking shells is not that much of a difficulty if reasons persist.

PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 4:13 pm

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I think we'll have a good framework, IF we find people we think are "SSX-material" apart from some (I think) minor details, there doesn't seem much disagreement with my original post.

Again, not likely to be "open season" on recruiting anytime soon, but we DO meet nice people from time to time (/em looks at Pixistix) and those people are good to keep hold of ;)
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 5:40 pm

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I think its premature to have open recruiting, but our standard voucher system seems to work well enough.

Most of us are relatively new to FFXI, and I think that it is probably best to have at least one member accomplished in FFXI vouch for any new members. It seems best to have those who know the game sign off on new members.
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