Free whitepaper: Social learning through communities

Is your organization looking gain value from social learning communities, but you’re not sure where to begin? IBM’s Center for Advanced Learning can help you start managing communities using practical tips and “secrets” of IBM’s own successful community managers. Learning … Continue reading Free whitepaper: Social learning through communities

Community Manager – a super powered human being or a sensitive leader?

It can be confusing to comprehend and gauge the needs of a community and what community members want from the community. Community of Practice (CoP) and Community of Interest (CoI) are groups of people joined by a thread of common goal- to develop some skills, a scooter-ride group, ongoing collaboration, or a movie club. And as the groups differ, how would a community manager know what the community needs to sustain or survive. The community manager might want to have the super powers to know that but this isn’t lotus land. The traditional community manager role focuses on the problems … Continue reading Community Manager – a super powered human being or a sensitive leader?

Are you the one killing the community?

Who kills a community? A member never does that. A stakeholder will never do that. Is it You? The Community Manager? In fact it is you.

Most of the stale, dead and pale communities have a strong community manager – a personality so strong, it overpowers the community. Like a tough teacher who never lets the students talk no matter what.

In 1999, my score in Mathematics dropped from 92/100 to 29/100 in just six months! Did my teacher ensure I failed? No, she tried to make me understand everything, every day, relentlessly. Then, how?

In her efforts, she never allowed me to grow on my own. She wanted me to succeed and forced me every minute; just like pulling a plant every day to ensure it grows faster. The plant will die. I bet my salary. And I failed! Thank God, those were interim exams.

That is what most of the community managers do. They force the community to grow by adding more and more members every day, without ensuring those who are already there are gaining value. Continue reading “Are you the one killing the community?”

Community Management – 5 tips to make your newsletter a success

Community Management sometimes is confused with power and Community Managers behave like kings and queens – insurmountable by anything or anyone. These communities do have a future – a doomed one. Members start leaving, the relations get bitter and the traffic goes down. But why are we talking about this in the context of a community newsletter?

Don't be a Monkey
Don’t be a Monkey CM

Don’t be a monkey – who snatches everything. Although monkeys have a great sense of community but when it comes to being a Community Manager, ‘don’t be a monkey’.

A community newsletter reflects the tone with which a community is managed and how community members are treated. A community newsletter is like an invitation and reflects the emotion of the sender towards the receiver – an invitation to the learning party by the learning party host (thanks Sarah Siegel for this term, I love it). Let’s look at how to make your community newsletter a success: Continue reading “Community Management – 5 tips to make your newsletter a success”

How do you make a community more active?

So you got new members and the community is big in number! Great – Congratulations. Mr CM, your work starts now! Your only (ideally) task should be to make the community active. “How do I do that?” This is one question I am almost certain to be asked whenever I speak with people regarding community and community management. And when I tell how I do it – people say they knew it but never paid attention to it. The trickiest part with community management is to understand the ‘WHY’ and the most often ignored aspect too. Here are 6 questions … Continue reading How do you make a community more active?

Community Management: Welcome them! Win them!

How would you feel when you walk into a party where everyone is busy doing something: singing, dancing, eating, vomiting (yuck!)… ? You move around and see small and big groups busy in their small games and chit-chats. There is food and drink but no one is offering it to you! How long will you stay alone?

I am sure most of us will walk out!

Are you treating your community members like this? Are you there when they join the community? How do you welcome them? or lemme ask, do you welcome them? image

When someone joins a community, you need to get them to participate in an interaction immediately. If you get this right, your ratio of newcomers to regulars will skyrocket. How to get them to join the party? Here are few tips but I am sure there are many. Do feel free to comment and share if you have any other brilliant idea. Continue reading “Community Management: Welcome them! Win them!”

How to keep Employees engaged?

At an informal dinner, I was recently asked, how do we ensure employees are engaged to make them feel important. As usual, a lot of witty minds jumped in to share their intellect. The conversation revolved around taking the employees out for an outing to maybe a resort for a weekend. Someone mentioned giving away t-shirts and mugs helps. The idea of gifting i-pods also surfaced.Strange! Why do employees need to engage in order to feel important? And important for whom? Themselves or stake holders? Engagement and collaboration, if carefully managed, leads to members realizing the value of being with … Continue reading How to keep Employees engaged?