When Jeremiah Owyang started Community Manager Appreciation Day (#CMAD) we were one of the first to jump on the bandwagon because community managers often work behind the scenes which means that they sometimes don’t get the appreciation they deserve for often very challenging work. In the best of times, community managers can be public heroes but more often then not they are setting boundaries, facilitating emotionally charged situations, having to justify their work to others and dealing with an ever-changing cast of characters and priorities. It is a roller coaster so it is apt to collectively take a day and say thank you – both for what we see and for all those things that community managers do that we don’t really know about but are critical to providing a constructive community environment.
At The Community Roundtable we are continuously honored to serve so many amazing community leaders – and we often get to hear the back story which makes it easy to appreciate and be in awe of the talents and experience of our TheCR Network members. It is a joy to help support them – whether in saying thank you today or by helping them think about things differently, find the right person to talk to or expose them to new techniques. We couldn’t be prouder of what our members accomplish every day. Jeremiah did some fantastic analysis on the power and influence of community managers that is worth sharing with internal stakeholders and communities so that they too can truly appreciate this role.
One thing that we have been discussing with members however is that while appreciation is nice, how can we collectively help advance the role and position of communities within our businesses? Helping to make community managers successful is the ultimate way to show appreciation. In a similar vein, we’ve been spending a lot of our time thinking about how we can most effectively move the discipline of community management forward. In the past few years, we’ve been gratified with the exposure our State of Community Management reports have gotten and feel like that has helped contribute to community management being seen as a professional and critical emerging discipline for businesses. But we have bigger ambitions.
This year, The State of Community Management research is evolving to a quantitative research initiative looking at the following types of metrics:
We think that this is groundbreaking research, which will give organizations a much more comprehensive look into how to successfully execute on social business strategies. We also believe that this research will dramatically increase the awareness of and respect for community management roles. This is one of the major ways we demonstrate our appreciation of community managers.
Cheers to all of you who labor in community management – you are our heroes and we want to do what we can to help others see you as theirs.
For more information about the 2013 State of Community Management, see the research prospectus here. If you are interesting in participating, please fill out the form below: