Do you have to convince people that community is worth it?

Inspired by a Tweet from Erin:

"Community is successful when community teams can focus on execution rather than convincing folks that execution is worth it." — @DavidSpinks

dropping major 🔥🎤

— Erin is out of Orbit office til 3/25! (@erinmikail) March 23, 2022

And it got me thinking about my own experience with Ministry of Testing (MoT), which I founded back in 2007.

I think MoT worked, thrived and survived a pandemic because community was at it’s core, all the way through. No questions asked.

Of course, this happened because it was me founding and leading it, I had the belief all the way through that it should be community-focused. Community, to me, was always the answer for everything and with that came creative innovation.

Lucky for me I reported to me. It has its advantages.

But how does this work in practice with companies? What are your experiences?

And how can we better create environments for community teams to execute with trust?

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With companies, as far as I can tell, I dont think any company is particularly running a Community to give BACK, as opposed to to draw out.

And whatever you might say, your customers figure this out, it’s very plain in sight tbh.

For Community Teams to operate from a place of trust, the leadership themselves need to understand what they’re using community for & what their goals from it are. Without this basic tenet, the Community Team stands to lose constantly when it comes to having to “show value” where it should be perceived.

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Half my time is spent explaining Community and why it’s so critical. That’s after spending 6 months doubling the size of the team so we already had a good foundation set. It’s just the endless battle like anything is truly I think though. Just like any product or marketing team had to have a reason for existence which means continually proving themselves, so do Communities.

I can’t decide if it’s harder doing this when you are launching a new community, or when you are trying to revamp/revive a struggling community that has been around for years though. I’m in the latter camp this go-round, and the constantly overcoming the “It’s so negative there” after years of being a support focused, black hole for the company is… fun!

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