From values, to members, to tactics. Formulating an action plan for your community is where the rubber begins to meet the
road. Your action plan highlights how you are going to make this community effective on a day-to-day basis. It needs to take into account the organizational environment in which you exist, and your relative strengths and weaknesses as you begin your community journey. Among the things to consider:
- Who are your strongest executive sponsors and where are they in the organization?
- What is your level of funding and staffing support?
- Where is the overall cultural level of support for community initiatives?
- How long do you have to demonstrate community impact – how long is your runway?
These answers inform your tactics.
It’s likely that as you create an action plan, you’ll focus most on three of the eight competencies in the Community Maturity Model:
Strategy: Link your community strategy to organizational business goals
– Identify use cases and behavior change needed
– Define shared purpose and shared value
– Take on an active listening strategy
– Articulate budget and resources needed
– Collect and communicate lessons as you go
• Community management: Assign a caretaker to welcome, support and represent members
– Identify a social listener
– Hire a social media or community manager
– Create workflows and escalation plans
– Document and formalize guidelines
– Build a programming plan
• Tools: Target technologies and processes to make your collaboration and communication more efficient
– Define and deploy minimum viable solution and “must haves”
– Vet requirements with stakeholders
– Prepare your basic listening toolset
These processes will inform the size and shape of the community you start with, and how the early stages of the community will operate. It will change over time–that’s the exponential nature of community.
Are you charged with building a community? Check out the Community Manager Handbook for more community best practices, strategy ideas and case studies.
Want the chance to contribute to research like the Community Manager Handbook? Members of TheCR Network get exclusive professional development opportunities like this and more! Join us and let us help you grow your career as a community manager.