When the Raid Leader’s away…

An interesting dynamic happens when the person recognised as the main raid Leader  isn’t there. Unless the new or reluctant raid leader is confident enough to pull it off, and is decisive enough to quiten down the naysayers then they will get eaten alive, or have their authority threatened because every one thinks its open season on coming up with a strat, or changing what has been done for weeks.

Even I find myself opening my mouth more for a suggestion, or even a offhand comment. We react to a weakness in the leadership.   

It’s also funny how new norms seem to slip into raid strats when people are left to their own devices,  they forget the way we did things.  We were doing Cat lady last night, and 15 secs to the pull someone says ” I’m sure the priests have worked out a fearward rotation”

I go – “uh.. we only used that when we didn’t have a Shammy so no tremor totem.  We have 3 Shammys in raid, aren’t they dropping tremor totems?.”

“Oh but there is lag so you need to do it.”  Theres always freaking lag  I am thinking.

So what happens,  the four priests come up with a fear rotation because we can.  I think it was silly because its unnecessary – yes maybe it free’s up a Shammy totem,  maybe it backs up the Shammys totem,  but I don’t think they even bothered laying one. It wasn’t being used as a back up, it was the primary system, we have never needed fear wards before,  and we have only have had one raid with no Shammy.  The fear rotation worked, after asking who was tanking the boss because no one had told us,   but at no time did our stand-in raid leader make that decision.  He has been in as many raids as I have,  and he let someone else change the normal strat.

Once someone shows weakness in leadership it opens the door again for other people to make far out suggestions, change strats or question decisions.  It happened again on Iron council, ( we went back for it)   everyone was looking to do easy mode stuff, and I suggested we do medium mode,  mainly to prove that we can do it with out our normal raid leader,  because I think we should already know what to do by now regardless of who is at the helm, and because we can.  It was agreed upon, and we wiped once because someone ran though the little arcane dudes when  the last guy was at about 20% , and someone tried to change something significant to our strat,  regardless that our wipe had nothing to do with their suggestion, and then they got upset when we refuted ( nicely ) their logic. I doubt they would have made that suggestion in the tone they did if the real raid leader had been there.

Our stand-in raid leader did do well,  he has stood in before,  he just needs to get more confident.   We had a decent night, but had to stop early due to instance server restarts at 10pm our time,

I think it’s  a bad tendency but it seems almost a natural inclination that the moment we sence a weakness, or indecision in a leader – we lose respect for their authority,  and say and do things that under firm leadership we wouldn’t.

6 Responses to “When the Raid Leader’s away…”

  1. 1 Klepsacovic September 24, 2009 at 3:24 pm

    Such an easy mistake to make: Assuming things are worked out when you don’t know how to do them yourself. The stand-in should have been talking with officers and finding out what needed to be known; work out the rotation that way so that he still looks to be in charge.

  2. 2 Anna September 24, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    This is why our raid is led by a core group of officers – of those officers 1 is the official Voice on Vent, but we all have raid duties. So when the official Voice has to go away, there are three or four other Lesser Voices which are both used to raiding and people that the raid is used to listening to.

    Works out pretty well!

  3. 3 xeonio September 24, 2009 at 6:45 pm

    An amazing post and soooooo true. As soon as the kids smell that fear, rebellion will be knocking on your door. Everyone sees that line that was set by your main raid leader… and they want to know what happens if they step over it with this raid leader.

    Boundaries, we all need them so that way we have something to test.

  4. 4 Derek September 24, 2009 at 11:05 pm

    Look at it from the stand-in leaders point of view though. If you normally have one raid leader, then your stand-in (over time) is trained to follow not lead.

    It’s a whole different mindset when you are leading, instead of following. So it’s not the easiest thing “becoming a different person” when asked to stand-in.

    I don’t think you should put all the pressure on the stand-in, but make it very clear that the is a way you do things, and it should continue to be done like that with or without the raid leader.

    Simply by stating that before you start, should refresh everyones memory that things need to get done instead of it being free-for-all time.

  5. 5 silk82 September 26, 2009 at 1:11 am

    Stand-in or not, the raid leader is the decision maker. If you want to change the strat (though I tend to agree that its not a great idea generally) you can, and the raiders should fall in line behind you.

    The biggest mistake most inexperienced / uncomfortable raid leaders make is that they let things drift without making the call either way, basically hoping for a resolution that doesn’t involve them being the “bad guy” or assuming responsibility for a mistake.

    I also think you were right to suggest medium mode (or higher) for IC as an aside. Its easier, when your inexperienced / lacking confidence to stick to the stuff you’re SURE you can smash rather than pushing against the flow and doing the harder stuff.

  6. 6 gnomeaggedon September 28, 2009 at 5:44 am

    It’s the substitute/emergency teacher thing…

    we were all good little students for the normal teacher, but the sub walks in the door and it’s open season…

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