In a world where everyone focuses on success, on ranks, on …………, we don’t focus enough on our failures. We need to fail in order to succeed, any successful person will tell you that. We as players fail, we learn, and then we succeed. And while I am of the mindset that success is the only option(covered in a later blog), our failures need to be stepping stones to that success.
My guild failed tremendously this expansion. We’re one of the oldest raiding guilds in the world, have always cleared content around a US50 level, but we struggled terribly in Emerald Nightmare and now ToV. Part of that is our expectations of players, we don’t add additional days, we don’t require alts, we don’t do split raids, we don’t recruit mercenary type players. Ultimately we enjoy raiding with each other, we have a thriving community, but at the same time, our raiding and boss rankings suffered. This was probably the worst rank we’ve achieved since WotLK.
But why? Well we had a few core players retire or flake out at the end of WoD, or at the start of Legion: A core healing priest, two hunters, a tank, and a half dozen apps. They don’t make loyal raiders like they used to!
Our recruitment wasn’t sufficient, partly because we don’t ever poach players(it’s despicable). And partly because we raid too many days and shy some good players away.
We made mistakes early into Legion with gearing and how we handled mythic+s. We didn’t push low mythics enough but instead pushed players to do higher mythics. At the same time we didn’t have the same amount of ‘time’ in the day to run mythics compared to other guilds. We’re an older guild full of working professionals, we’re not high school kids anymore.
And despite plenty of beta experience, many of our players didn’t anticipate the time commitment to gear up through mythic+s and the AP gain needed in order to survive many of the raids.
And while we made a few missteps at the start of the expansion, we had many successes as well.
EN was the pre-season. ToV was the actual season, and Nighthold is the playoffs. We’ve been building off our failures in EN and ToV to prepare us for NH.
Failure is Strength
In the above failures, they are now my guild’s strengths. We have revamped how we handle recruitment with raid day adjustments and expectations. We had pushed mythics much further as well as set realistic weekly AP goals for players. How the players achieved those goals didn’t matter. We improved our mentoring process for newer applicants. The guild is now stronger due to our failures with a better position to succeed in the playoffs(Nighthold).
Treat each failure as a stepping stone, as progression.
Celebrate Failures as well as Successes
In our raids, we focus on failures as well the successes. Every mistake, every wipe is a failure. How do we learn from each mistake? Each wipe should be an improvement on the last one. Whether it takes you 50 attempts or 500, it doesn’t matter. We learn from each other as to not repeat failures.
As a raid leader, I like hearing from a player that they made a mistake, this is what happened and why, and this is what they are doing to ensure they won’t do it again. That failure is now a success because not only do I have a better raider, but a better player.
Nothing Great is Achieved without Risk
Think about those of you that have taken the leap of faith to join a guild like mine, like Zeroes to Heroes. So many players are afraid of taking that plunge with a new server, a new guild. Nothing risked, nothing gained. Don’t settle in complacency and comfort. Continue taking those risks.
We extended a lockout on Cenarius during a week where most guilds extended in order to solidify a second rank on the server. While we failed there, it would have been a genius move had we succeeded in the kill and not been idiots standing in brambles.
Failure is necessary. We were all noobs once right? We failed tremendously then. We are probably better players now. Those were your past failures. You built on them to be better players.
Don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Be an adult, learn from them, and move on. Whether it’s guild failures, raid failures, relationship failures, celebrate in them, and then succeed. Because really, long-term success is the only option.