Image: Collaboration /Richard Yuan/ CC BY-NC 2.0
Many companies, particularly larger companies, often suffer the curse of “re-inventing the wheel”. But strong networks can nurture the development of good ideas, the transfer of knowledge and faster solutions. Good community managers connect people and foster effective collaboration.
Image: Deaf Bible Translation Team /Elyse Patten/ CC BY-NC 2.0
This is perhaps more evident in internal communities, there may be communities with a goal that relates to employee engagement – sharing the CEO’s vision, induction programmes or specific communities on organisational culture. Your community managers will play a big part in building these communities. But there’s another way successful communities help employee engagement; we know that “recognition” is a motivating factor at work. Managers and community managers can provide that recognition via a community, but so can peers. If community managers build a culture of appreciation they’ll be setting up that peer-recognition.
Image: Occupy Detroit /Cocoloco Photography/ CC BY-NC 2.0
In a crisis or an incident fast accurate answers are really important, and a strong community can amplify your responses. I’ve seen companies overwhelmed by questions during a technical issue with their site, other followers of the twitter account were re-tweeting or answering questions directly. But this will only work if you’ve trusted your community manager to build a community first.
Image: Victoria and Albert Museum Info Desk /Mark Hogan/ CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
Service is now provided online and in real time, this can be a cost cutter and time saver for a company. Community managers work to find answers or experts, and provide the service
Image: Twitter On The Rocks con Cris Alcazar /Camom/ CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
As customers have moved to using their computer/tablet/mobile phone their first view of your company is your website, and the first person from your company they meet may well be a community manager. Your customer service frontline is now conducted across the internet and you are relying on your community manager to provide the service and convey the brand values of your company.
Community managers are increasingly important as the use of social media grows both inside and outside companies. If the community managers in your company are doing their job well, today is the day to thank them – it’s Community Manager Appreciation Day.