Wanted: Motivated leader to head a team of 25 full-time and part-time employees. Must be able to guide the company past difficult obstacles and push them to new heights of performance, all while keeping morale high and smoothing over personality conflicts. Must be prepared to take and give a lot of abuse. Other duties include defending the company's reputation in public, managing a collective bank, and dealing with a group of vicious, backstabbing subordinates constantly plotting your downfall. Hours: 6 p.m. until the job is done, any day we get 24 other people of the right job description in the office. Salary: NOTHING.
WoW blogger Psyae poses an interesting question on his blog -- if you were offered a job as a full-time paid guild leader, would you take it? What sort of salary would you expect? What would the job description be?
Of course, Psyae isn't actually hiring anyone to lead a guild. His point is that guild leaders have what is essentially a full-time management job that they pay $15 a month for. He also notes that his "job" as a semi-casual raiding guild leader actually involves more effort than his paying job. This is true not just for Psyae, but for a lot of guild leaders. A friend of mine spent a good chunk of his time at work handling guild issues, and on the night the guild died, made me repeatedly promise to hit him in the face if he ever decided to run a guild again. The former leader of my current guild was studying for his PhD in business at the time he was leading the guild, and it showed -- we were probably the only guild in the world whose raid strategies included the words "cognizant" and "proactive."
Whether you lead a guild for your ego, a feeling of dominance, better progression, or just because you thought "Hey, I could do this better than this guy" one day, you're doing a job for free. On the other hand, with great power comes great opportunity to abuse that power. Would you be a full-time, paid guild leader? What about a volunteer, part-time one like most guild leaders? Why do you think people lead guilds?