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Community is not about you

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Community is not about you
              OR
What community leadership is about

     Alex Maier, Community Director,
     ...

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Who am I to say this?
•   15+ years in online marketing
•   10+ years in open source
•   Founded Fedora Ambassadors
•   Le...

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How to be a successful community
              leader


  Empower your community
then get the hell out of the way

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Community is not about you

  1. 1. Community is not about you OR What community leadership is about Alex Maier, Community Director, Nebula
  2. 2. 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
  3. 3. How to be a successful community leader Empower your community then get the hell out of the way
  4. 4. 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
  5. 5. Identify what people want You can observe a lot by watching. -Yogi Berra • Listen • Look for patterns • Distil into actionable projects
  6. 6. 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
  7. 7. 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.
  8. 8. Arbitrate when necessary • Passion begets conflict • Don’t expect kumba-ya • Don’t be afraid of conflict How to arbitrate: • State the rules—clearly and in public • Apply rules equally to everyone • Even to yourself!
  9. 9. 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
  10. 10. 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
  11. 11. Don’t take all the credit Sounds like a simple thing, no? Brings us right back to the beginning: Community is not about you
  12. 12. Thank you

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