Social media Code of Ethics

I’m proud to jointly release a new Code of Ethics for professional social media and community managers in Australia. The standard was developed in collaboration with the Australian Community Managers industry group, digital media researchers Dr Fiona Martin and Dr Jonathan Hutchison (University of Sydney), Alison Michalk and myself. The Code of Ethics can be…

Communities are the future of management

It’s an exciting time for community practitioners. People everywhere are learning that successful business, management and change agency in this century requires an understanding of human systems – how to build them, sustain them and optimise them. This is the art and science of community, and its future is bright. Recognising this, the team at Pausefest have…

Work is a trust equation

Work is not a place. Work is a trust equation. It’s something some businesses are still struggling to understand and challenging themselves to implement. Case in point, the UK’s Daily Telegraph, which recently installed sensors under employee desks to detect when they were present (therefore presumably, ‘working’). The little black boxes were provided by a company called OccupEye,…

Ditch the feedback fakery

Here’s a resolution I’d love to see in 2016. Don’t ask your community for their ideas, opinion or feedback if you know the response is going nowhere. Asking for feedback isn’t special. Step outside and you’ll trip over a poll or a survey request. Seeing that feedback folded into action is much rarer. Cut the act…

Beware the army of clones

When community has been well crafted and managed over time, its members will feel a strong sense of belonging and be able to articulate membership identifiers that make them feel part of the group. It’s natural that many of those communities – built around purpose, topic or practice – are characterised by sameness rather than otherness. People join, participate and…

Ping-pong won’t solve your culture problem

Businesses world over are struggling to build and maintain healthy cultures. They’re reaching for tools and toys that organisations with vibrant cultures often appear to possess, feeling like they’ve glimpsed the solution: a new intranet platform, a company hack-a-thon, an open plan office or the ping-pong table that’s become a cliche. We see this with online communities…

Communities need to get things done

Recently I helped organise an event called The Final Mile – a weekend immersion event for anyone working on a project they wanted to complete. The event offered a place, tools and incentives to wrap up that thing they never quite got around to finishing (we’ve all been there). Participants worked on everything from building websites and apps,…

2015 Australian Community Management Survey

In Australia there are hundreds of working community managers and very little is known about them. That changes now. For every social media crisis, successful campaign, community launch or seeding of an online movement, there’s a community manager in the mix, who is usually a cypher. That’s by design. It’s not about the community manager,…

Meet the new Swarm Board

In 2014 Swarm conference co-founder Alison Michalk and I invited applications for the Swarm Board – a dedicated group of community professionals who could help us continue to improve and evolve the Swarm experience for attendees, sponsors, partners and the industry at large. We began as roundtable of like minds, then grew to an entire conference. Now…

Swarm 2015: call for speakers

Add your voice to the only industry conference for online community professionals in the Asia Pacific region. Swarm, Australia’s national conference for community managers and social media professionals, is celebrating it’s fifth year in 2015- and it’s going to be huge! Each year Swarm gathers a host of remarkable international and Australian presenters for attendees,…

Community Manager Appreciation Day Panels

Community Manager Appreciation Day is coming up on January 26, 2015 (January 27 here in Australia). Community management professionals and advocates around the world are gathering together for 24 hours worth of Google hangouts on different topics and issues. (Here’s the epic team that pull it all together). The Hangout-a-thon covers everything from moderation, to crisis management,…

Benefits of owned community vs. social networks

While social networks have enjoyed the spotlight for many years, branded – or owned – communities never went away. Popular owned communities like Flyertalk, Essential Baby, Whirlpool, Mumsnet, American Express, Gaia Online, ReachOut, not to mention countless customer service communities, have balanced an on-network community with a strategic presence in social media for many years. These entities still add…