I love reading books that don’t have the word “community” in the title, but they completely resonate with the challenges that community managers face.
The Power of Moments, by Chip Heath & Dan Heath is one of those incredibly powerful books that will change the way you look at managing your community.
Building a community and encouraging members to engage meaningfully with one another is the same as nurturing many magical moments in your community.
This book is amazing for community managers, because it:
- defines what makes a “moment”
- identifies traits that moments have in common.
- includes real-life case studies of how people have applied these traits to develop and build their own in their communities
- shows you how you can create your own powerful moments.
What are the key attributes that make up “powerful moments”?
The four common traits of powerful moments are:
Elevation: go above and beyond.
Insight: create “aha” moments.
Pride: make them feel proud of themselves, provide meaningful recognition.
Connection: foster deeper connections where members of the community are resonating with each other/ they feel relatable.
How these applied to one of my special community events I host each year:
Now, I mentioned that this really resonated with me as a community manager.
The reason why is because I recognized these traits in some of the events that I have hosted for communities that I’ve managed in the past.
One of these events is the community highlights presentation that I hosted at the end of the year. It’s really a celebration of the community and everything that we’ve gone through in the past year. It’s definitely a special moment for not only the community but also myself as a community manager.
So let’s take a look at how this “end of year community highlights” event that I host consists of the 4 traits mentioned in the book.
Elevation is all about going above and beyond.
With my end of year community highlights event, I go beyond to make sure that the event feels really different to any previous events that have been hosted throughout the year.
Because it’s the end of the year, I make it holiday themed and I go all out.
My slides are absolutely mental background colours… and the clipart goes crazy. I make sure the zoom backgrounds are crazy and share a whole bunch with hosts and community members to also change their backgrounds (and they can use their own too). I encourage people to dress up in holiday themes or bring an item that is their favourite holiday thing like a mug etc… You get the idea!
My main goal? Try to take this event to another level compared to all the previous events throughout the year.
Insight is all about creating those “a ha!” moments of clarity for your community members.
For my end of year community event, I love to show members how far we’ve come throughout the year(s). I’ll show them a slide in the event and in the presentation that looks at the types of conversations, questions, comments etc that are happening at the beginning of the year. And then I’ll show them a slide with the conversations, comments etc that are happening towards the end of the year. And tell them a story to show them how far they’ve come.
During the event I’ll show them some awesome stats of how our community has grown, and the major themes/conversations that have taken place. I’ll also show how people in the community have grown over time and the results from community activity (i.e. how has being a member of the community had impact on their lives?).
It really does give them moments of insight. And I do like to call these moments “a ha!” moments (that’s my goal – how many people say “ooooh” or have the “a ha!” look on their face as they realise how far they’ve come, or what the community has achieved as a whole!
Powerful moments bring out the emotion of pride in community members – proud to be a part of something incredible.
In my end of year community highlights event, I really amplify the accomplishments of individual members in this event. I create individual slides just talking about them and shout it out from the rooftops! It’s awesome as other community members at the event also react and that social impact creates even more pride for those “on stage”.
I also make sure to recognize the achievements of the community as a whole. For example, the community provides product feedback throughout the year. So I bring that up at the event. And then I’ll show them how that feedback had impacted on the product itself. What improvements had been made to the product, whether there were pilot programs behind the scenes that were taking place (thanks to their feedback), comments from the product teams themselves including what their response to the feedback from the community was.
I’m showcasing to the community that their feedback mattered, and that they did have a voice and that voice had impact. This creates that sense of pride across the community that they’ve achieved something really great.
People feeling connected is obviously an important aspect of being a part of a strong community, but it also is essential for creating those powerful moments.
For my end of year event, everybody in the community is invited to this end of year event. I make sure that we have individual members who are able to speak and share their challenges and put them up on stage. It sparks moments of deeper connection to the community.
Their name may have been familiar to community members in the group via posts and replies/comments, but now members are hearing from them as a “human” and it deepens the relationships between community members. As they’re speaking I watch as other members resonate with the person that is speaking.
I know I’m on the right path when I see other members nodding their heads in agreement with others during the event. In the virtual event world I think that is the equivalent of creating powerful moments that truly creates a deeper sense of connection. You CAN create powerful moments ONLINE as well as OFFLINE.
I also make sure to remind the community members at this event about our WHY.
Why are we here?
What are we hoping to achieve by being a part of this community?
I also ask them to share their goals for next year.
This is a really great way to get them excited about moving forward as a whole as a community moving forward into the new year. Connection is fostered by looking forward to the future!
This year for the event I’m having ambassadors host the event instead of me! That deepens the connection in the community even further, as now I have community members who have become ambassadors take the lead.
So I hope that’s helped you understand a little bit about how creating powerful moments can be an incredible resource for a community.
If you have any questions or you’d like to talk to me about the book, feel free to get in touch.
If you are interested in my community highlights slides (that you can tailor for your own events), you can find them via my community highlights presentation.