Networking and its use in Esports
Wednesday October 24th 2017
I've been promoted to ÉTS EsporTS' League of Legends coordinator at the beginning of the month. Since then, we've been running the tryouts for both our Division 1 and 2 teams. We've been thaught during our engineering classes that networking is an important skill to get great jobs. But before organizing and noticing the results of these tryouts, I didn't expect that it would be an important skill to get picked up in a team as well.
The basics of networking are simple. Get to know the people you want to work for. Or in Esports, play for.
We provide a chance to every player that has a specific in-game level to try-out. Our requirements are Platinum for a Division 2 tryout and Diamond for a Division 1 tryout. As long as this requirement is met, and the provided contact information is valid, everyone that fills in the registration form receives a tryout for the team. The first advantage of networking is that you'll have an easier access to this form. Being in contact with the guys who make said form means you can ask them for a link instead of going to the proper website, or for an estimation date. If your contacts are better, you may even get a tryout without filling the form (both captains seem to allow this). I personally dislike not having the form's information, but the captains feel like they can ask later ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.
The most important part of networking, though, is the first impression you give out. If a player's first meeting with the captain is during the tryout, the impression given may not be as good as he'd want. That is the case even if the game is a stomp, as the captain will probably think the opponents were just of a lower level. Having prior contact with the captain allows to get past the in-game first impression and obtain a better judgement. Through networking, and this applies to all fields, you also display involvement and passion. The captain can know from networking that you are a motivated player, instead of only having a question mark from whatever he heard during the tryout.
These are analysis I've got from this semester's tryouts. Both the Division 1 Jungler and the Division 2 AD Carry probably would not have obtained their roles if they did not do prior networking.
The Division 1 Jungler contacted both me and the captain through voice-chat. He came to us post-tryouts to obtain feedback on his playstyle, his communication and his involvement in the team. Not only does this allow us to know him better, but it displays the desire to improve.
The Division 2 AD Carry did not fill in the try-out form. He came through a player from a previous semester for a last minute try-out. Both the captain and I met him a bunch of times in our club's room, during the last two semesters. Now, his skills may have seemed slightly above the other competitor for his role, but if he was somebody we didn't know, we probably would have went with the other player, as we already knew the guy.