ORvR Leadership Series: Commanding The Public Group (PuG) Part 2: Harnessing The Public Warforce
Stepping into the helm of a PuG or Public Warforce can be a bit daunting at times. You frequently will be repeating orders, moving members around the groups, finding yourself standing alone, and often times going blue in the face trying to get people to follow your lead. Most of these things can be reduced but it is important to remember your at the helm of a PuG not a premade.
PuGâ€™s will only listen when its convenient, or when there is a clear objective that meets their goals. Half of your force will follow your lead the other half will do what they think is best for the group ignoring your commands and doing their own thing. Youâ€™ll find people queuing for scenarios, flying to zones you are not in, and getting lost all throughout the land. Whereâ€™s the appeal in this you ask?
The PuG craves leadership. They wait for someone to step into the leadership position and show them the way to maximize their gain and enjoyment levels. To become a successful leader you need to understand the various types of players you will come across:
This player is the worse kind. Remove them when you find them as they will never have anything good to say and will constantly rip apart your warforce. They will object to everything you say, disrespect other members, and do the exact opposite of any orders you give. Their plan is the only plan and they will not be happy until you quit. Even if given the opportunity to lead they will decline it. They have no interest in success only in tearing down the warforce. This type of player is the most dangerous to your success and should be dealt with swiftly.
This player will abandon orders at any given time to get extra renown or rewards. Their mission is theirs alone and will tag along as long as you keep the rewards coming. You cannot depend on them to have your back if you need to scramble. They will be too busy collecting pennies on the floor to see the dollars on the horizon. While typically they are a hindrance on a PuG and often are the jinx in the armor they are also really easy to motivate. Simply spin the greed toward your enemy and objective. Show them that the 400 renown for a second tick, does not equal the 10k they will receive from the lock. Spell it out for them and remind them that there is a dollar on the horizon and not enough time to take the penny or the dollar at the same time. Motivate by greed and bribery and they will do whatever you ask.
The Thrill Seeker
This player will find the biggest fight and dive head first. This type of unit will go where you ask when you ask but a lot of times will over commit and find themselves dead before the rest of the force is ready to engage. Be sure to remind them not to dive in too fast. Throttle your engagements by planning ahead. Instead of saying move to this objective hold them off in the distance out of view of your true target until everyone can regroup. Be sure to regroup your force frequently. This will keep the Thrill seekers with the pack and keep them out of trouble. Another thing you need to watch for is as soon as they engage they no longer read your commands. They will not pull off if you say pull off or fall back when you say fall back. Expect this and be ready to toss them a rez to get them back to the main force. Sometimes they have to die to have the time to read their chat log.
These are typically the best to have. They obey every order, do not over extend, and are not controlled by greed. If you find one of these be sure to keep them close. Move them to one of your primary groups. Always look for some Loyalist healers and make sure their in the primary group. This part of your warforce will be your middle line. While the greedy will be late to the fight, the thrill seekers first to the fight the loyalists serve as a middle section that supports the thrill seekers. They will also be the force you can flank right and flank left. They will wait for orders before waylaying their keyboard.
This player cares about nothing but their own gain. They join a warband so that they keep a bearing on whatâ€™s going on but ignore all commands and often times are too far from the group to do much of anything useful. They are however useful in keeping scouts on the field. If you can, get them to run solo, or throw them in the group with the greedy. Make sure they report whatever they see and a lot of times you can use them as scouts. They usually will be hopping in and out of scenarios or camping warcamps.
The Father Figure
This type of player will abandon all responsibilities and orders if he feels it will help someone. They will roam around the land tossing people an extra hand where they need it. They rarely join warbands but when they do they are an excellent support unit. Theyâ€™re intentions are usually pure and they try their best to look out for everyone. Sometimes they will ignore your orders, which open a weakness but usually return after their own side mission is complete. Be sure to keep communication with these types of people as they may see something you miss and might have solid suggestions. Any player willing to put their own gain aside for others is a leader in the making.
These 6 types of players will make up the general mass of the common PuG. Try your best to give orders in multiple communication channels to keep everyone on the same page. Do not get discouraged when you canâ€™t keep everyone together and understand that your playerâ€™s skill levels vary drastically. Stick your strongest players together and make sure to have a strong healer in every group. Remember just because someoneâ€™s a higher level doesnâ€™t make them stronger. The greedy will often be the first to the higher levels while the Father Figure, Loyalists, and Thrill Seekers will have the combat experience to come through when you need them. Pay attention to who lives and who dies and who stays with their group. This is how you can strengthen it as a whole.
Is leading a PuG a tiring and demanding feat? Yes by all means however when the show comes together and hundreds are having a good time it makes it all worth it. While some make memories for 6 at a time you will be making them for hundreds. Keep your chin up, ignore the negativity that comes out of some players, and hold the compliments dear to heart. It takes a thick skin to lead PuGâ€™s and is usually a thankless job. But in the end it is a rewarding one and a lot of people will follow your lead the more you dare to lead. Give them victories and they will follow you close.
Continue: Part 3: Thinking in Multiple