Script for the upcoming MES Video on “Retention”
These scripts go through a number of revisions, but in general I have to try not to be wordy and use run-on sentences with these things, as I’m writing to read these aloud, on camera, and in as little takes as I can manage. This often proves a challenge. One of these days I’ll post production photos to show people what it’s like to shoot them.
Each video I do is around 20-30 hours of work, but it’s a labor of love. If I can touch just ONE person with each video it’s a win. If I can make a difference in ONE domain, that makes it all worth while. As for this piece, it’s really pretty close to my heart as my own home domain is undergoing some of these symptoms. As I was writing this script I actually realized that I’m not doing enough personally to help my own domain retain members. Talk about a revelation!
Fortunately I think my domain is going to be okay and the people who need some time away from game will get that. It just really made me feel like I wasn’t doing enough for my own domain while writing this. I’m dedicating this video to those storytellers and coordinators out there who work the thankless jobs and day in and day out give their domains love, support, and time/energy.
Thank you. You are loved.
Below is the script. As I’m filming in a few hours here, the script is of course subject to change
WELCOME TO THE VIDEO PORTION OF THE MIND’S EYE SOCIETY MIDNIGHT VOICE NEWSLETTER! YOUR CAN CHECK OUT THE NEWSLETTER EVERY QUARTER. MAKE SURE YOU’RE SUBSCRIBED TO THE GENERAL OOC LIST TO GET THE LATEST FROM THE NEWSLETTER TEAM! BE SURE TO LEAVE A COMMENT ON THIS VIDEO TO LET US KNOW WHAT YOU THINK, AS WELL AS YOUR IDEAS FOR FUTURE VIDEO SEGMENTS!
Hi, I’m Juliet Meyer a member from Denver,Coloradoin the North Central Region. This quarter we will be focusing on the topic of retention. In other words, I wanted to talk about some ideas on how we can all retain members at the local level.
Everyone has seen members part ways from local games for personal reasons. This video will focus on how to try and keep members at your game, as well as focusing on creating a more healthy game in your own city that prevents future apathy and burn out.
As we discussed in our last video, each city is going to be different, however for this video we will focus on the generalized demographic of the Mind’s Eye Society. Obviously work schedules, or changes in family dynamics such as a new baby in the family are well beyond our control. However let’s talk about some of the top reasons for members departing a local game that we can work to overcome.
- An OC Lack of Interest in the Game
- Drama Mitigation
- Location Considerations
- Burn Out
- Working A Thankless Job
Chances are you or someone close to you has fallen into one of those categories on their way out of the game. What’s worse is that you may have someone suffering needlessly right now in your domain. Maybe you’re suffering from one of these and you’re watching this video right now. Let me take a moment and speak directly to you.
Thank you. Thank you for everything you’ve contributed to this organization, and we want you to be here. We are an ensemble cast telling amazing stories, and you’re part of that beautiful tapestry. Please, take a moment and remember everything you’ve given the club and everything the people in the club have given you. Take a chance, and remember that you can make a difference. So please, stick around. Thanks J
If you learn nothing else from this video I’d ask that you learn to say thank you to your offices, location hosts, and fellow players. These videos are about taking a step back and remembering that we truly are the lifeblood of this organization and every individual can and does make a difference. But lets talk about how you can help out your local domain!
Remember, you don’t have to be an officer to affect your domain. Ask yourself – Does your domain suffer from apathy and a general disinterest in the game? There are ways to help combat this that center around cultivating excitement and anticipation as well a rediscovering your friends on an out of character level. So – how is that done?
Getting involved for some people is all about plot – if that’s your domain, contact your regional storytelling staff to see if you can work with them to help reignite flames in character. If you think your game needs more out of character interest then plan a domain BBQ, themed murder mystery dinner party, or even a hot to host a board game night if that’s something you think your domain would enjoy. The key to this is creating buzz that’s not about the game, and planning all the details before making the announcement. You’re giving the coordinators and storytellers a break from doing the heavy lifting. The idea is to create excitement and anticipation which will carry over into the game.
Investment in your game in and out of character will help you get more out of the organization, and your local domain.
Some people might argue that stimulating the out of character social demographic isn’t solving any problems and that only in character interest stimulates the game. So how do you interest people locally if your regional story tellers haven’t responded yet? Consider getting those who aren’t terribly interested in the game together to create a new group of characters with new goals. The new addendum is offering some serious boons to those with new characters before the end of chronicle. Get that new character scent and get excited about short term achievable goals! Learn a new accent, hit savers and get some new clothes, and get reconnected on the wiki. Sometimes the idea of something new helps reinvigorate the old.
But what about Drama.
You can stop drama ahead of time by cultivating trust and friendship at out of character events as well as practicing good communication habits. Before you shoot of an email try to ask yourself how the receiver or list participants will respond. Sometimes things happen that cause us to be rightfully angry or upset, but take a moment to catch your breath, have a cup of coffee and maybe talk to a friend before responding. Try to recognize when you need a friend and when you need to be a friend. Sometimes your ear is all people need to stop the drama before it starts.
Remember it’s not just your Coordinators job to try and stop drama in it’s tracks. Everyone can play a hand in having a drama free domain.
If that wasn’t clear enough, remember – Don’t Be a Dick.
Moving along, what about location contributes to retention? Are you using the same house or park in your domain? Are you convinced that Primogen meetings are doomed to the garage forever? Do you know where your local host stores all their toilet paper?
It might be time to look for other locations. Sometimes a change of location makes a big difference for the players, and it certainly makes a difference for the house-owners. Try a new site once a quarter and make it an event just for the domain. Even just trying to help find a new site can make a difference.
And to all those of you out there who have hosted games for what feels like years – thank you.
Speaking of thank yous I’d like to take a moment to talk about our our officers. These are the dream makers, the risk takers, and the people who make up the framework of the world we often wreak havoc in. We are the Godzilla of their Tokyo.
Making your coordinator and storytellers lives easier by asking “how can I help” or just by lending a hand here and there at the game by offering to run challenges or help with check in can make all the difference. But most of all take the time to thank them for their service. Many of the drama bullets they take go unseen by the rest of the population. This is true in troupe games as much as it is in national organizations.
So take a minute and say thanks next time you see them. THEIR reaction might just surprise you or get you hit by the plot bus…
Thanks for joining the Newsletter Team for our video on Retention, and as always please leave a comment or two here on YouTube to let us know what you think, and what worked for you!
I’m Juliet Meyer, you can check out my blog at www.d10again.com and on twitter @d10again – Thanks for watching!