How to be a good community manager
When it comes to being a good manager at anything, we all know there are certain qualities that make a difference between being a great manager and not so great manager.
A good manager can unite a team and drive great employee engagement and adoption of new processes and business methods.
So how do you become a good manager, and how do you know if you are a good community manager already?
With the extensive experience, we have within user adoption and guiding the growth of great community managers, here are four tactics that we have seen prove successful.
These tactics cover strategy, governance, facilitation and content creation.
Four tactics to being a good community manager. Strategy, governance, facilitation and content creation. #CommunityManager Click To Tweet
Four tactics to good community management
A community manager role offers different responsibilities, activities and actions to just being a general across the board manager. One of the great aspects of being a good community manager in the first place is that you and your community are trying to achieve something together. You have a joint purpose and that brings unity. You are a long-term facilitator of change.
So what are your responsibilities and how can you excel in them. Here is a great starting point for you to embrace your ‘community manager’ role and achieve business success. And that’s something we all want!
Be a good Strategist!
As a good community manager, you are responsible for increasing engagement and business value. You are the owner of the Yammer network. So rather than trying to be everywhere at once and do everything in solo, strategize and utilise the network around you.
Find your people!
Get people on your team who are already using the platform and finding their work life is now easier. These people may not always be the loudest in the room but if you seek them out, they will definitely be your biggest change champions, promoting their new way of working. They will be your biggest supporters and make your job easier. Seek them out.
There will be people who will resist the change. It is inevitable. But you don’t want to focus on this group just now and slow down your progress overall. Sidestep them. Come back to them if you must, but in the initial stages, focus on those with less resistance to change.
There will come a point when the entire organisation is successfully using the platform and working in new ways. Your resistant group will eventually come on board. If the way they work, no longer works, because everyone else is working in a new way. Well, you know what will happen. The change will be driven naturally.
The proof is in the pudding.
When you have your team of change champions or smaller groups successfully using the Yammer network; advocating your cause and showcasing how productive their work life has become, you now have your own proof of concept. Utilise these examples of real-world success to influence other business leaders and stakeholders in the organisation.
A good community manager top tip!
Embed yammer into normal daily activities to help facilitate change. Send out the weekly newsletter or office updates on the channel. This requires little workload effort by people to read something they find socially interesting.
Be a good Governor!
A part of being a good community manager, you are responsible for creating the usage policy and guiding conversations in a user-friendly manner and making sure platform use runs smoothly.
Be glitch free
Create and build your relationship with your IT team to ensure the platform runs smoothly for users. Create a fast resolution process with IT in advance, before any issues arise. Don’t wait until something occurs, to source a fix. Be proactive and get ahead of the glitch with preparation and processes.
Upskill your skills
Become an expert in knowing how your platform works. Understand how to configure and set up the functional aspects to keep your users’ conversations flowing. Expanding the platform into other systems is a great way to increase user adoption. Put the platform where they need it before they know they need it. Make their life easier.
Be a group leader
Ensure groups are created and managed in alignment with what is needed by users and still achieves the business goals. Practise having insight and being proactive in creating new groups as required and deleting groups that no longer serve a common goal. Keep the groups alive.
Be a good Facilitator!
As a community manager, you are responsible for guiding, supporting and encouraging users transitioning over to the platform to maintain productivity and achieve success.
Cultivate a culture
Keep inclusiveness at front and centre for all your actions and engagements. Many different types of people are going to be interacting on a single platform. Productivity will be at a peak where users can work within an environment that is engaging and community driven. A good facilitator can create and guide this.
Seek and solve
Not all users are going to feel comfortable asking questions or reaching out to troubleshoot support on a public platform. Pre-empt this by creating your own set of faqs and solutions to common questions you feel new users may have. Start a conversation around a general ‘how to’. This is a great start in creating open conversations amongst users.
Praise and recognise
As previously mentioned, your champions in the business will be your greatest asset. Transfer this support they offer you into the main yammer platform by offering them praise and recognition, amongst their peers. This will encourage them to continue to champion your cause but also position them as leaders amongst the organisation and other people will naturally refer to them for help and support. This will create conversation.
A good community manager top tip!
New starters in the organisation. Create a shout out with their image on the main company channel with something interesting about them. A fast way to make them feel welcome and start a conversation with existing employees. Connecting is the key.
Be a good Content Creator!
As a community manager, you are responsible for informing, educating and promoting successful use cases.
Spread good vibes
Everyone loves to read a good story, hear about success and feel a part of a positive uplifting movement. And creating this on yammer is no different. Make yammer a place of not only day to day work, but of inspiration and enjoyment. Share interesting articles, wins, success and top tips on the platform to not only encourage others to do the same but to make Yammer a place of all-around enjoyment.
Loud and proud
Work out loud and let everyone know how fantastic this new way of working is. Spread the word. Make your marketing efforts count by utilising formal network-wide communications in an exciting and informative way. Create exciting collab groups such as a Yam Jam (we can help you with that one), post marketing materials around the workplace and get the yammer platform piggybacking on office events. Make the experience fun and exciting for maximum interest and user adoption.
Take it seriously
Yammer is a wonderful platform and creates lots of exciting interaction and engagement when successful. There is, however, an educational side to ensuring its success in regards to business goals. Training and education.
Ensure you have created or had access to materials and links that users can quickly learn from and access to further their knowledge and education. Create a range of materials. Quick reference guides, FAQS, cheat sheet for fast points of reference. Create Videos, manuals and documentation for a more in-depth look at the workings of Yammer.
Top Tip – use yammer to market your materials. Create a channel just for learning. A channel where all the files, videos, faqs’ etc can be linked to for a one-stop educational hub. A place where questions can be answered in a fast and efficient manner.
So there you have it. Our inside scope on what it takes to be a GREAT community manager. One who not only takes ownership and guides but who also has the foresight to prepare and support users, before they need it. A manager who creates a good blend of support, excitement, inclusion and engagement.
Managers manage, but community managers… they connect!
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