What qualities make someone a good community manager?

Got a great question today in my inbox, “what qualities make someone a good community manager?

First, I can not promote the title community manager, because I do not believe the role is to manage the community. I don’t think the title is fair to the professional or to the community.

So, I can only promote titles like,

Community Architect A product centric person who designs and creates the spaces for communities to gather in and go about their life and work together

Community Curator A content centric person who is a good story teller, and can draw out great stories and examples from the community to reflect back to itself.

Community Cultivator A person who cares about rules and procedures and knows when to break them… the person who plants questions and content, moderates conversations, and mediates relationships.

Some of the qualities necessary for these roles are:

  • Compassion – you must love people in all their shapes and cultures and proclivities
  • Empathy – able to step in the shoes and head of anyone within the community, or outside the community
  • Strong Character – able to roll with the punches, dodge attacks, and defend community guidelines
  • Decider – gotta just make decisions quickly, communicate clearly, and keep moving

I probably need to add a hundred more, but these keep floating to the top.

  • Great post Thomas…thanks for ideating!

  • chrisvieville

    I agree Thomas, I use Community Caretaker myself 🙂 I also really liked someone describing the idea of a Community Animator.

    • Oooooh! Can you describe those in one or two sentences? I’d love to update the post (and give you credit!)

      • chrisvieville

        For me I took a look at what I was doing and it never felt like managing either. I have to give credit to Micah Baldwin for planting that seed in my head and the idea of a caretaker. The community I am charged with is an organic living breathing thing and it’s my responsibility to nurture it, to care for it, and try to keep it as healthy as possible. I might need to water it, throw some fertilizer (pun intended) around to get things growing or even clear out a few weeds to keep it top notch!

        I believe it was @Caligater that mentioned Community Animators at one of our meetups and I always liked the term. The idea of someone drawing life onto a blank page and creating motion and images where before there were none always seemed so artistic 😀