Can a community exist without members?
Community Manager Appreciation Day (or #CMAD) is today!
Some say Community Managers are “the most powerful group in the internet, they manage the largest social accounts.” That’s a very nice and generous description of Community Managers, and perhaps correct too – from an administration and responsibility point of view. However, most Community Managers I spoke to get a little uncomfortable with that description (me included).
From my own perspective, I believe that my role as a Community Manager exists because there is a community for me to manage. And from this belief, my role is one that is naturally focused on supporting its members (while managing the community).
Among my global network of SCN Community Manager peers, I often hear them share stories of unexpected, wonderful and selfless gestures by specific members of our community. They use words like “awesome,” “did you see?” and “let’s try….” They also worry about the health of the community, level of engagement, and quality of content.
I find their attitude and their empathy very inspiring. My own motivation for being a Community Manager is the thrill I get from kicking off or supporting the process of collaboration and co-creation with other community members.
Here’s a short video from a few of us SCN Community Managers:
- Jason Cao – Vancouver, Canada
- Krysten Bradley (Gentile) – Newtown Square, USA
- Jason Lax – Ra’anana, Israel
Even though Community Manager Appreciation Day is intended for giving thanks to our Community Managers, Chip Rodgers, in his latest blog, suggests that this day should celebrate more than those identified as “Community Managers” – that our SCN Moderators and Space Editors should also be recognized for their hard work and dedication behind the scenes. I’m seeing a ripple-effect here – where on a day such as this, the appreciation expands from the few committed Community Managers, to the more dedicated moderators and space editors, and spreads further to the many supportive members of this community.
So to answer the title of this blog, this Community Manager submits to you that as much as this day is to appreciate the efforts of Community Managers, it is also a celebration of all our members – without whom there will not be a community! Regardless of which way the ripple really flows (managers-moderators-members or the other way around), I’m glad to work with a bunch of folks who appreciate and perceive each member as having their own potential to create a unique ripple that can reach the entire community!