BlogHangout

Trust: Create It, Don’t Advertise It

October 17, 2015 — by Patrick Hellen0

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BlogHangout

Trust: Create It, Don’t Advertise It

October 17, 2015 — by Patrick Hellen0

Trust: Create It, Don't Advertise ItA few years back, I had a decent sized barbecue in my backyard.

After a few hours, it started to shift from a backyard party to a, “call your friends to bring more beer, the flip cup tournament is on round 11,” kind of shindig.

Now, while a good part of that day is hazy for some reason, the thing that stands out is one uninvited guest who started to hit on every girl in sight. The reason he stood out? The giant tattoo on his bicep, spelling out TRUST in massive, please look at me letters. I think we all can agree, that If you’ve got to advertise your trustworthy qualities, chances are you’re the last person that should be left alone with the good silver.

How in the hell can I possibly connect this to community management?

I’m glad you asked!

When you’re in a community, with people that are earnestly trying to help one another, the camaraderie and connections come naturally.  CMs jump in to course correct, and adjust where needed, but overall the community self corrects. Trust just happens. To paraphrase—you know it when you feel it.

Now, that’s not to say there’s not a huge amount of work going on behind the scenes. We all know how many soft touches, subtle suggestions, and enablement moments we’re working to accomplish a safe space where that trust can exist. The #CMGRHangout linked here has a ton of great suggestions that you can implement, and Crystal Coleman’s article on this subject is practically a To-Do List of awesome you can read here.

The final word on the matter is that if you put in the time and effort, and are honest (warts and all forever!), you won’t have to advertise quite so permanently as our friend in the opening paragraphs here. While he might have been able to get a few numbers, the long term relationships you’re looking to build in your own communities can’t rely on gimmicks.

Until next time—if anyone has a community manager tattoo, now’s the time to share. Ping me at @PatrickCH with your CMGR Ink.

-P.

Patrick Hellen

Director of Community at Deep Information Sciences, Inc.
Patrick Hellen is a large collection of adjectives, in the shape of a lanky, bearded, and bespectacled fellow. He's been a lumberjack, a restaurant writer, a published author, a sales guy, a book seller, a church janitor, a tour guide, and most recently, a community manager and a Dad. He reads nearly constantly, tells loud boisterous stories for as many people as will listen, eats food like it's his last day on earth, and still collects comic books and video games. Until he decides to sit down and write another book, you'll have to find his inane ramblings on Twitter at @PatrickCH.