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Sara-Zorah

Running multiple sites: How do you do it?

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I am always in awe of folks who can run two or more boards. How do you do it? What are your time management skills like? Do you have any advice for the perpetually-disorganized/piss-poor at time management? 


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The majority of my sites basically run themselves once the initial building is finished. I run site wide plots here and there, but for the most part my players simply run personal plots.


 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

My time management skills suck. But I manage to have two sites going. I build my sites to be very hands off for staff though. So people

can play even if staff is busy. 🙂
 

edit: as for advice, I’d say the more sites you run the more hands off you should make it. Don’t have staff approved apps, try to automate lists like face claims, and do as much as you can to make it a place where staff isn’t required to be around 24/7 for things to get going. 

Edited by Zozma

Reality is an illusion. 

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Automation is key as the last two have pointed out. Having mandatory things that have to be updated manually is a daunting task for one site, let alone 2 or 3. I believe if you're a Jcink user there is a guide in our guides for how to make sortable member lists based on custom fields (I think) but I know things like MyBB, IPS, phpBB and SMF have ways to better automate things using scripting for things like playby lists job lists, etc.

 

Additionally supportive co-admin/staff help a lot.

 

Really its important knowing your limits and knowing when you need help. Getting overwhelmed often shuts down creativity and eventually love for a site idea.

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I ran two once, and honestly the others here have hit it pretty solidly on the head. Try to limit the amount of work you actually have to do (claims, updating lists, etc) and find staff that are willing to take on at least some of the work. A lot of people make sites with their friends but don't take into account whether or not those friends actually know how to manage a site or handle some of the needed code/software that your site requires/uses (ie navigating ACP or assigning groups/boards/etc). This can be an issue because you end up being the only one that can update anything and you get run down super fast. 

So my advice:

- Automate/slim where you can.
- Choose your staff for their skills/ability to manage properly and not for how close of a friend you are.

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I've got to throw in another vote for automation. Automation is king. Why burden staff with menial tasks like coding faceclaims into a directory listing, when that can be done automatically? Staff burnout is one of the main reasons sites die. A lot of sites also lose new members because members of the staff team got busy and couldn't process apps and the like for a day or two. Automation solves that. As both a staffer and a member, I want a site where all I have to do is fill out a character profile - and everything else automates from there. 

 

On my site all members have to do is complete the character profile. By filling out the profile it automatically creates claims for: Profession, Faction, Faceclaim/Playby, Member-Character listing. 

 

This takes the burden of having to remember to claim everything off members. Obviously it removes the staff burden of having to manual code this information into a template that will shatter to hell if they put a bracket in the wrong place. And lets not forget the irritation of having to back track through and find claim information from those members who either forget to, or just won't, submit their various claims. 

 

Staffing is important too. Most importantly, the admin has to be able to take criticism and objection from their fellows without lashing out - and the rest of the staff have to be able to do the same. If you are ever in a position where you find yourself thinking "This needs to be addressed but X won't take it well..." then that staff person needs to go. If you have those thoughts about an admin you work with... well, time to jump ship because it's already taking on water. 

 

Avoid plots that require staff input to remain running. Always build so players can continue uninterrupted by staff absence. Don't require app approval if you can't guarantee the app will be reviewed within at max 12 hours - which, honestly, is already too long. Especially if the app is a first submission by a new member. 

 

 

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9 hours ago, Dragon said:

Don't require app approval if you can't guarantee the app will be reviewed within at max 12 hours - which, honestly, is already too long. Especially if the app is a first submission by a new member. 


I think this is a really good point. It’s especially daunting to a new player to see the staff online (even if they are at work) and not approving their application. I’ve left sites that don’t approve my app same day when I see staff members online for more than 6 hours in the day chatting it up but ignoring my application. 


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3 hours ago, Morrigan said:


I think this is a really good point. It’s especially daunting to a new player to see the staff online (even if they are at work) and not approving their application. I’ve left sites that don’t approve my app same day when I see staff members online for more than 6 hours in the day chatting it up but ignoring my application. 

 

The two sites I run that require applications actually have a "Post your app and then you can  post." policy in place. Basically, humans are automatically approved - If you play a supernatural being or otherwise gifted person, you can  post without using ANY of your characters powers - Once we have accepted you, you're good to go all out, but until then, keep it simple.


 

 

 

 

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