As the end of the year is fast approaching and the last senior staff meeting of 2017 is in a matter of days, I just wanted to take this opportunity to issue my end of year report to you all.
As CEO of Earthís Elite, I oversee the general day to day running of the community as a whole, I also control the direction of EE, helped by Scott and Shoot.
Before I get into what I would like to see from EE next year, letís take a look back at this year.
In January I introduced, by CEO Directive, a new Staff Policy, this policy governs how the EE staff will work, it is extremely harsh on those who do not do their jobs to a level I have dictated.
I did this because I wasnít happy with the 2016 performance, I wanted better for you all. Our staff are supposed to ensure you all as members get to come here and have fun, we deal with the back end day to day boring stuff to ensure there is always something fun on offer for you all to do, this policy ensured this was happening along with ensuring the continued growth of the community.
Over the course of 2017 we have hit most of our targets, we are still lacking, massively, on activity and this will be resolved in Q1 of 2018. The community growth was much better than last year 27 new members at the time of writing this (with a loss of 1), 2016 saw only 6 new members over the course of the entire year.
I feel, activity and growth are closely linked, the more active we are as a community the bigger and better we will become, this is why 2018 we will be focusing closely on activity.
Overall, 2017 has been a rather good year for EE, but I know we can do better, I myself over the last 4 or so months have dropped the ball, having just started a new job IRL, my time has become more limited, I am still working out new schedules etc to work around this and continue to fulfill my CEO responsibilities. I promise that 2018 will be an even better year for the community.
Before I go on and discuss what I would like to see from EE next year, I would just like to address one merger that occured during this year. We merged with a Discord server a few months ago, this has now become our primary discord server and the old one is now an archive and locked to our Seniors only. While I dislike Discord, I must admit that it is a good communication tool, it would be great to see more members using the service over the next few months into 2018.
Now, looking forward to next year, I cannot say that everything I mention here will definatley happen, mainly because I will be giving the senior staff the option to choose, as we havenít had our final meeting for this year yet, none of this has been mentioned to the senior staff yet, which is why I cannot say if it will or will not happen, I can simply tell you that I will be fighting for these things to happen.
Firstly, I want to address the activity of EE, this will be one of my primary concerns in Q1 of 2018, I want to see the use of our services sky rocket, we have great tools such as the forums, LaunchPad, COMMís, and TS, thatís just naming a few of them. I want to see members and staff using these things more, the LaunchPad for example is a very easy thing to use, yes I understand that at first itís not so easy, you have to add each game you want to play, but this is a one time thing, once itís on there itís on there for you to play, I will also be pushing out an update in the next few days for the LaunchPad that will be removing the requirement of actually visiting the LaunchPad page on our site or the opening the program, instead youíll be able to launch a game, say from Steam, and the LaunchPad system will automatically detect it and show to the world that you are playing a game.
Things like the forums are harder to get people to use, this will be something I want the staff to focus on mostly, opening dicussions, keeping things going, getting people invovled, the same goes for TS.
In terms of events, I want to change how our events work, I wanted to get the community moving, so for 2017 I reintroduced the requirement of 4 events a month along with a showcase event, this has failed to yeild the results I hoped for, most if not all the events see a turn out of 1 or 2 people, that number includes the event host themselves. As a gaming community, those numbers, in my opinion, are appaling. If I was a guest looking in, potentially looking to join, I wouldnít, what would be the point, join a community where nothing is happening.
I have been thinking of ways to combat low activity, a while ago I was told there was a lack of incentive, I will be honest, I laughed at this. As a gaming community, surely all the incentive someone would need to join a gaming event would be to have fun, to play a game with fellow like minded individuals? Maybe Iím wrong, maybe monetary rewards should be offered for all 192 regular division events a year, but I can safely say that Earthís Elite and myself personally would not fund them.
So, what do I want to do to combat it? What I plan to do is abolish the requirement of a showcase event, these clearly do not work anyway, I also want to abolish the need for 4 events a month. I also want to change up the way events work. Instead of events divisions will host activities, these I want to be the new regular events, for example, the Hide & Seek sandbox activity, a weekly get together to play prop hunt on GMOD, but an event would be a one off special activity, for example a community 24 hour event or a Minecraft buildathon.
To further combat activity, I do want to add a little monetary incentive (I know,I just mentioned this), from January 1st 2018, I want the EE LaunchPad to track yearly usage during activities and events, the member who has the highest community interation time, will win a small reward. AKA, attend more events, have more of a chance of winning something.
Along with the above, I also want to introduce some new things for members to do, one big one will be the Los Santos Life server we are developing (I know, still. Iím pretty much a one man team over here), this will be a 24/7 server that will only survive with high levels of activity, if we work hard in Q1 of 2018, by Q2 maybe Q3, Iím sure the rewards will be worth it.
For community growth, I want to look into better advertising for the community, but this will come in Q2 of 2018, after we have addressed the activity issues. So more on this will be revealed closer to the time once details have been confirmed.
One more things I wish to change in 2018, is staff accountability, I want the EE staff to be held more accountabe to the members, this includes the Senior Staff. Now, we donít want to go the route of TLO where our members can vote staff out, but I do want to give power to our members to call for a public internal investigation, if anyone feels a member of staff, including the CEO, is under performing. The reason I donít want to give the power of removal to the members is for this one reason, quite often, some projects that our staff are working on are behind the scenes, something that is not publically visible, take my role of Technical Director as an example, when Iím busy working on a new EE website update, you very rarely see any progress from me, thatís why an internal, public, investigation will yeild better results, if itís found that yeah, actually, this member of staff hasnít been performing their duties, then they will be removed, but as a result of the investigation, but if, like me, theyíve been working the background, itíll publically show that, actually, they are still doing their job, they just donít have anything to show to the public right now.
Iím sure there are other things here that I want to implement/change in 2018 that I just canít remember right now, they will be revealed as and when, but, Earthís Elite should work for you, so if you have any ideas, any at all, then please do contact us. I mention this all the time and very rarely get any feedback, this is massive hinderance to Earthís Eliteís future, as Senior Staff we have to do things that will work for you, so that you guys continue to use our services, but if weíre not getting feedback from you about what weíre doing right and what weíre doing wrong, we wont be able to improve and make things even better for you, so please please please, comment on this topic, let us know what you think weíre doing wrong AND right.
If by the end of Q1 we havenít been able to improve activity, we may have to think about imposing activity restricitions on EE membership, I donít want to do this, because it makes people have to be active in events, but I also wont let this community die. Next year we will be celebrating 4 years of operations, with only 58 members, we are WAY below where we should be at this time, so please, help us help you have a better experience in EE next year. It will be a team effort and we cannot do this without your help.
As CEO I have dedicated a massive amount of my own time to trying to make this community work, Iím now having to ask, please help me, it is the only way.
Thank you for taking the time to read this report, I hope to see you in events of the next few weeks as we head towards the end of 2017. Weíve got some great end of year events coming up, the Autumn 24 hour event, Celebration weekend, Christmas events, and the infamous end of year party where I tend to make a massive fool of myself, but if we donít speak before hand, I hope you and your families have a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Chief Executive Officer