Joe Cothrel is Chief Community Officer at Lithium Technologies. He is Lithium’s top expert on community and social best practices and has helped more than 300 companies execute successful social efforts.
He is active on Twitter @cothrel and is a regular contributor in the Lithosphere where he is JoeC.
Well I didn’t quite keep my promise about weekly posts, but I do have some more news about the Community ManagementCertification we’ll be offering for the first time at this year’s LiNC.
First, we’re now at full capacity for the certification session. Congrats to all of you who successfully registered for our inaugural session. For the rest, we’ll be maintaining a waiting list in case we have cancellations, and of course we’ll be running the session again at next year’s LiNC, and maybe even sooner. So stay tuned.
Next, here are more details about the content of the program.
As part of our development process, we identified 18 core responsibilities for enterprise community managers:
1. Select appropriate interaction styles and features for your audience
2. Design and configure the proper community structure
3. Define community roles and responsibilities
4. Develop marketing plans to increase usage and membership for the community
5. Create comprehensive set of community guidelines and policies
6. Oversee and manage moderators
7. Plan for PR crises and other customer issues
8. Manage off-domain activity
9. Develop communication plans for community members
10. Identify and manage your most active community members
11. Plan and execute community activities to support business events
12. Plan and execute community events
13. Manage blogs and other content program
14. Manage functional touch points within your organization
15. Expand community
16. Develop a measurement program and deliver regular reports to stakeholders
17. Coordinate with the platform vendor
18. Conduct periodic evaluations and competitive analysis
We’re still testing and refining, so it’s possible that one or two areas will be added or will fall out by the time May 2 arrives, but that’s our list.
It was an interesting exercise to work with our internal teams to create this list. Like most of our best practices, it’s derived from our observations of nearly 300 enterprise community efforts over the past 10 years, and specifically from those community efforts that have been most successful. In the course of this exercise, we’ve been reminded that this new discipline of community management relies on a number of more established secondary or “reference” disciplines, and that these disciplines are more often business-oriented disciplines like leadership or corporate performance measurement, as they are technical disciplines like web technology or social science disciplines like psychology. Enterprise community managers today wear many hats, and one of them is certainly “business manager.”
The certification process includes an intensive one-day workshop at LiNC, followed by examination sessions that take place over the entire course of the three-day conference. Participants will have the choice of completing the entire examination at the conclusion of the first day, or taking the exam in two parts, during any of the scheduled examination sessions.
Many of the principles and practices included in the certification program have been part of Lithium’s launch training programs for many years. If you participated in the launch process for your community, you have a head start in learning some of the principles you’ll find on the certification exam. If you weren’t part of the launch process – or even if you were – and you’d like to do some preparation before May 2, I would encourage you to review some of the relevant modules of our on-demand training. We’ve selected the following as most relevant to the certification course: