So, what are you working on? Part 1

Thanks for the welcome, @HAWK.

The internet gives introverts opportunities to find friends and communicate that real life does not. It was like that for me when I was a shy teenager and university student, and still, a lot of people I meet wrote me an e-mail first, or we followed each other on Twitter.

But becoming less introverted, in my case, did not happen because of the internet. I did it, by pushing my boundaries, going traveling, etc. I could have just stayed behind the computer. So I don’t think the internet does either, although it does give opportunities to the socially handicapped (and the physically handicapped!).

I agree with you @Nick_Emmett, introverts are generally good active listeners, an excellent skill to possess for this type of job.

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I think it’s really awesome! Have you used it yet for online communities?

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Not formally. I’m part of a remote team that are planning a conference, and we use Slack as our communication platform, so in some ways I guess you could say yes.

What are the main pluses and minuses that you’re finding?

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Sorry for the brief previous reply - I’ve been super busy with work, raising a family with kids on summer break, and personal projects. It’s 3am EST, and I find myself up in the middle of the night again, working. My sleep habits have been weird lately.

i love Slack. The company I work for, Speakaboos has remote teams in various locations. Previously, we used Skype as our main communications hub. It was great too, and allowed us to chat in various ways - group chats for team discussions, private chat for “pair programming” and other types of one-on-one interactions, video chat for our “standup” meetings (an agile programming thing), and one of my favorite features - screen sharing. Screen sharing has all kinds of great uses - giving a presentation to a group, or again - pair programming, when two developers needed to be looking at code together.

I discovered Slack about 6 months ago. It had one killer feature right off the bat that Skype didn’t have - the ability to paste graphics into the chat stream. We do a lot of design related things, so pasting screenshots directly into the chat was something I had always wanted to do with Skype. Honestly, if Skype had that feature, we probably wouldn’t have changed platforms so suddenly. Skype had a lot of traction with us, and moving everybody over to Slack took some effort. But we did it, and never looked back.

Besides pasting graphics into the chat stream, you can paste other types of links into the stream as well. Pasting a URL did the same sort of thing you see in Facebook, where it does its best to paste a little summary with a representative graphic. Pasting a YouTube link, pastes the actual video you can play without going to a browser - the video plays right there, in the chat stream.

Slack was free, and easy to set up. The switchover was pretty painless. As I got into Slack, being the administrator of the software, I started learning about its other features - integrations are like plug-ins - Slack is extendable to do all sorts of other neat things. Recently I’ve discovered that people are using Slack, not just for business communications but also developing online communities. I joined an IOS Developer Slack team, a Music team, a Guitar Talk team, and others. I created two of my own - one for Apple Music fans, and one for Audiobook and Podcast fans.

I could go on, singing the praises of Slack, but like I said - I’m pretty busy, and need to get to my ToDo list. Do yourself a favor and check out the Slack List - Find a couple of topics you’re interested in, and join them. Some groups are still new, without a lot of engagement, but some are really booming! Let me know what your experience is like.

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Thanks Steve.

Going to be looking at moving the FeverBee team into Slack. At the moment our internal collaboration isn’t as efficient as it should be. We have dropbox, google docs, google drive, trello, salesforce, skype, and e-mail. If slack can condense at least the dropbox, google docs, google drive, trello e-mail and skype into one place, I’d be pretty keen to do it.

Does it have good to-do list features? That would be really interesting.

We’ve managed to make it condense email and Skype chat, which I guess is a start! I don’t think it can do to-do lists and document management though, but I’d love to be wrong. @Steve_Warren can you shed any light around that?

How are you going with your research into advocate programs @Kristinaking ?

I’m also in the health area. I manage a peer-support community for young people in Australia who are struggling with a mental health difficulty.

It’s been interesting to read how everyone is approaching their work.

Right now I’m working on

  • Developing our support for our volunteers
  • Optimizing the visitor - newcomer - regular ratio
  • I’m doing the Feverbee training modules (even though I’ve been working in communities for some time now, it’s a great refresher)
  • Recruiting a new community manager to take over the community as I am about to move into building new a peer-support community for Australian parents of teenagers with a mental health difficulty…

Something I haven’t been doing but I’m really keen to start working on is the idea of increasing the influence of the community within the sector… Anyone got case studies on this?


Hey everyone, it’s great to join up with this great community. I’m currently a freelancer and am not managing a community at this time. However, I have just come from a consultancy where I designed, built/upgraded and launched many online communities, mostly on the Jive or Salesforce platforms (along with one pretty lightweight BuddyPress implementation). I have worked closely with both startups and some large, global brands.

The ability to build communities that transform how people work and empower customer relationships is what attracts me to this space. I am fascinated by the topic of the future of work and feel that social collaboration technologies are at the heart of positive change. At this time, I’m trying to learn more about the greater diversity of community platforms. I’m also fascinated by what I see as the areas of tension. Namely, how can we move beyond mere clickstream analytics (likes, comments, etc.) to better align this critical data to business outcomes? We must do this by means of a highly manual process right now, but how to make this a more automated process intrgigues me. I am also known for my interest in tilting at windmills. :grin:

Also, how can we improve user experiences of signup and onboarding in ways that prevent platform fatigue? The latter is really a question of thoughtfully architecting the technology, I think, to enable social sign-on (as in this community) but that’s not always an easy thing depending upon the platform you use.

At any rate, I’m looking forward to the interactions here and appreciate the warm welcome!


Welcome aboard @Todd_Nilson. Lovely use of windmill graphic :smile:

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Hello, all. Jeff here from Louisville, Kentucky USA. I’ve been the community manager for Humana’s enterprise social network for the past 5+ years. I’m on the Enterprise Social Media team at this Fortune 100 company. I also serve as the initial point of contact for lines of business at the company interested in implementing a community in their work with the millions of customers we serve, and I work with the various community managers of those communities on a professional development basis. I LOVE what I do!

So in answer to one question, I both manage a 44,000 user internal community (along with one additional community manager I hired a few months ago), plus I consult with others about standing up and managing their communities.

I think my biggest challenge right now is to help get the company structured properly when it comes to community. We have no person or department that is officially the business area that “owns” the strategy of has the authority to say yay or nay on matters of new communities. That creates a bit of a free-for-all and opens the door to gross misunderstandings of how best to plan and grow a community. So I keep educating others and taking every opportunity to step in and be the knowledgeable resource on the subject with the intention that more responsibility and authority in the matter lands with our team.

My question for the larger organizations represented here would be: How does your business organize who is responsible for implementing aspects of community in what you do?

Thanks in advance for the conversation! Glad to be here.


Hey @JeffKRoss. Welcome to FeverBee.

I’m currently working with a client who has an internal community of 60,000 people so I understand first hand the challenges that come with it

With my client we’ve helped nurture what they call an “innovation hub”. It’s definitely leveraged for their purposes, but they’ve found success in giving ownership of it to a new business area that no other area had any historic view about (as it didn’t exist), but because the senior leadership team have made it clearly known they support and back it it has the respect and authority needed to be seen as the de facto community strategist and leading light.

Have you attempted to do anything similar? Is there scope?

Thanks, Darren. We haven’t created a new area for ownership of the external communities, although I think it would be very appropriate to do so. We have no issue with ownership of the internal community (originally started by an Enterprise Innovation team I was on in 2009) because we’ve had that clearly managed for 5+ years, but the external ones are where the rogue startups are sometimes happening. There used to be an Innovation Center for the company, but it was wildly different in scope (and reputation and success - not sure I want to be affiliated). Frankly, I’d love to branch off the current Enterprise Social Media team under Digital Marketing and be Director of Community for the company, own the strategy and take on a cohesive plan for implementing it where it makes sense throughout the company’s interactions with businesses and customers we’re connected with.

Thanks for your thoughts!

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Welcome @Sophie – I was lucky enough to hear you speak at Swarm a couple of years ago. It’s great to have you here.

[quote=“Sophie, post:59, topic:675”]
Optimizing the visitor - newcomer - regular ratio
[/quote] I’d love to hear what you’re doing around this. I think it’s one of the biggest challenges that we all face. Have you taken any steps toward it?

Hey Todd, great to hear from you.

[quote=“Todd_Nilson, post:60, topic:675”]
along with one pretty lightweight BuddyPress implementation
[/quote] I might pick your brains on that at some point Todd – we’re looking at implementing BuddyPress in a community that I work with.

[quote=“Todd_Nilson, post:60, topic:675”]
to enable social sign-on
[/quote] That did have a whole lot of implications (especially around email validation) here as well, but I pushed hard for it.

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On @discourse is pretty simple, just a few howtos to follow step by step. People like it since it simplifies the onboard process.

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I’ve run for over 12 years. Our site is for technicians in the Theatre and Live Entertainment industry. It’s a very niche site and we are a “household” name in the industry, but there is always room for improvement and increased engagement. I am currently running XenForo 1.4, getting ready to update to 1.5 as soon as I can confirm compatibility with all my addons and custom-built code.

What I’m currently working on is revamping the onboarding process. We have a great welcome message, but I’m working on follow-up and managing the first couple months experience. Not trying to customize it for every user, but I am working to create separate onboarding path’s for different types of users, i.e. manufacturers vs end users.

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Welcome Dave.

I’d love to see that, if you’re willing to share.

Dear USER,

Thank you for joining us at ControlBooth! We are a tight-knit community that gets what you do. We love technical theatre and live entertainment technology. Yeah, we admit it, we love to go to concerts and spend as much time looking at the rig as we do paying attention to the band. Trust me, you’re in good company.

So, dive right in and introduce yourself. Head over to the New Member Board and start a new thread by hitting the New Thread button in the top right part of the screen above the list of topics. Let us know what you love about this industry, how you got into it, and what you are working on now!

We’ll see you inside.


(If you have any questions, just hit reply and it will start a conversation with ControlBooth’s Staff)[/quote]

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What kind of response do you get in terms of people posting on the new member board?