Upon Closer Inspection
Posted by Corelin
You should never meet your heroes. Paul Newman… I was so excited about meeting him, but he turned up in shell suit bottoms, slippers, and a jumper. He was just so worn out and old, he wanted to go home.
These days “meeting” your heroes in far more detail than is good for you is inevitable. In the aftermath of the 38 studios apocalypse more and more emerges on Curt Schilling’s mismanagement and lack of acumen. It seems that you have the choice between seeing Schill as either completely blinkered and incompetent or having a reckless arrogant disregard for the people who depended on his leadership for their well-being. At this level failure doesn’t allow for excuses. He attempts over and over to blame the governor of Rhode Island. What was the Governor’s reason to back him? Why was it necessary for 38 Studios to get to a position where they required the assistance of Rhode Island? Was it at all reasonable to expect assistance from a man who basically campaigned against the loan that brought 38 Studios to Rhode Island?
In this article Schilling opens up a bit, and many others are interviewed regarding how 38 Studios operated. Schill comes off as a well-meaning, cronyistic (It’s a word now), nepotistic entitled leader who assumed success would follow because he was Curt Schilling and He Had an IDEA that was Too Great to Fail.
Here’s the part that relates to EvE. Success isn’t an entitlement. Nothing will ever guarantee it. You can work your butt off, do the right thing, and do it the right way, and still fail. Sometimes your ambitions are too high, sometimes your planning wasn’t right, sometimes circumstances murder you or the competition is just too high. You don’t have a “right” to succeed. You have to earn it and you have to have a plan if it doesn’t happen the way you think it will. If part of your plan is “… and the stars align…” you aren’t doing yourself any favors.
Signs you might be digging your grave instead of building a foundation:
- Depending on the fact that “We have the greatest (FC/Logis/Scouts/participation/unbreakable will)” to carry you
- Setting a goal without researching it exhaustively. Whenever someone says “We want to go to nullsec” I ask them “What’s the rent where you want to go, how much are sov bills?” and usually they don’t know. That’s not a good sign.
- Not tracking on competition. Who will line up against you. What will they do. No matter what you do in EvE there’s someone competing for the spot.
- Depending on someone who’s benefit for helping you is debatable. If your operation’s safety from routine attacks requires you to batphone people regularly then there had damn well better be a reason for them to show up. If they are going to put themselves at risk they want to know what’s in it for them and you had better have an answer.
- Fancy Hats for my friends! Sometimes you have really capable friends who can handle certain roles. Sometimes you might need to tell your friends to sit in the corner and try not to eat too much paste. Before handing a role or responsibility to someone, make sure they have a plan for what they will do, how they will do it and understand their expectations and limitations.
- Don’t have a plan for failure. If it’s “Victory or Death” you will virtually assure death, an empty corporation and probably many people quitting the game. A better plan sounds like “Victory or heading back to lowsec to grief idiots with silly gatecamps” or “Build capital ships or at least many of the components commonly used in them.”
No one is special. There’s no unique beautiful snowflakes in EvE. Great leaders will come and go and in going will likely make themselves look silly, stupid, or just plain spiteful. Never assume success will follow because you are special. Never assume it will happen at all. Hope for it, plan for it, and plan for when it doesn’t happen.