Community is not about you ORWhat community leadership is about Alex Maier, Community Director, Nebula
Who am I to say this?• 15+ years in online marketing• 10+ years in open source• Founded Fedora Ambassadors• Led VMware vExperts• Building a community for Nebula Blog: comrademanager.com
How to be a successful community leader Empower your communitythen get the hell out of the way
People will only do what they want• Community == Volunteers• They came to do something they care about• They likely have own ideas• You can’t fire them• You can however make them leave
Identify what people wantYou can observe a lot by watching. -Yogi Berra• Listen• Look for patterns• Distil into actionable projects
Connect the right people“Soylent green is people!”• Use your insight to find like-minded people• Bring them together• Explain why you think their interests are a good match for collaboration
Get them the resources they need• Sometimes it’s money• Sometimes it’s infrastructure• Sometimes it’s training• Only your community knows what they need So ask them.
Arbitrate when necessary• Passion begets conflict• Don’t expect kumba-ya• Don’t be afraid of conflictHow to arbitrate:• State the rules—clearly and in public• Apply rules equally to everyone• Even to yourself!
Stay out of the way• Don’t micro-manage• Actually, don’t get involved at all if possible• If they follow the rules of the community and are productive, leave them alone• Learn to accept unexpected outcomes• Learn to love them• …even if they weren’t your idea
Show gratitude• Recognition is a powerful motivator• Simple “thank you” email or message on forum does wonders• Promote volunteer leaders• Give them more responsibility• Don’t stop thanking volunteers• Gratitude never gets old
Don’t take all the creditSounds like a simple thing, no?Brings us right back to the beginning: Community is not about you