In a comment to my review of The Guild Leader's Companion, Bearness writes:
The book sounds helpful and thorough...and very disenchanting. I feel intrigued and disgusted at the same time. At what point did running a gaming guild become so business-like? I understand that a guild, especially a big one, has a lot of social dynamics and requires some leadership and organization to run properly. But, I feel like it can be done without dehumanizing guild members into "human resources".
Making things look effortless requires a lot of effort.
I do appreciate certain efficiency in my gaming. If I play for x amount of hours, I'd like to have something to show for it. At the same time, it's just a game, which means the main purpose is to have fun. For me, even if I didn't kill the boss or get that "phat" loot, if I had a good time hanging out with fellow gamers, mission accomplished. But, I guess everyone has different expectations.
No matter how you slice it, leading a guild is work. You have to recruit people, deal with drama, keep things running, and keep people happy.
If anything, one could argue that running a serious raiding guild is easier because the expectations of people are much more concrete. Everyone expects to log in and raid at time X, that loot will be distributed according to the system, and the goal is to kill bosses. You're all on the same page.
A casual guild, on the other hand, can't really count on any of its members to show up for anything. Some of them might, some of them might not. And that is even more soul-destroying to a guild leader who's trying to make the game fun for her guildies.
Maybe this is an outdated idea, but I've always felt that the point of organization is to make life easier, to make it run more smoothly. Which ends up allowing you to have "more fun". You can concentrate on having fun, and the rules and structure take care of the necessary elements.
It's kind of like money. Sure, you can go through life running on the edge, using a credit card or borrowing money to pay for stuff and then paying it back. Heck, I've done that before. But it's astonishing how much easier a small cushion of savings makes your life. Even just a couple months of living expenses stashed away makes a radical difference in how smoothly your life can flow. It may even just be a psychological benefit, not having to worry about things as much.
That's the same role that good rules and good structure plays in a guild. Ultimately, it makes life easier, and allows you to have more fun.