Class started with casual banter per norm on Tuesday the 26th, in which we learned that Steve makes great homemade pizza and it was Rebecca’s birthday. Then delved into content for the previous week, the topic of which had been “Building a Community from Scratch.”
Spent most of the class time considering the maturation model and identifying at which point of the model we are at in the class. Most of the discussion pointed towards the class being at the 3rd stage of the model because we have flexible policies and governments, we have a general idea of what we need to do, we drive our participation in the community on the CMGRclass g+ space, and we use collaborative leadership. It was also suggested that the class is in limbo somewhere between 2 and 3 due to the fact that the class is a consistent size and is not open to growth.
The next topic was the difference between a community and a network based on the model. A community has a manager pulling string behind the scenes, whereas a network is more individualized. Community has some form of sovereignty, even if the lines are fuzzy, network pretty intertwined into other things.
The question of whether or not you can plan to stop the process in the maturation model at the point of at forming a tight knit community and not going any further was then considered. In Jenn’s opinion, it’s huge brands and their community members that make a network (pepsi, coke, etc). You’re part of a network and an audience, not a tight knit community that comes with smaller, more conversational and personalized grouping that is kind of like a family. Many smaller networks do, indeed, stop short on the maturation model and hover in the “tight knit community” category.
This led to the next topic of discussion, which was “Is the end game of building a community always moving towards creating a network?” The answer seemed to be a solid “no, not necessarily.” The maturation model is a good guideline for companies and CMs to take bits and pieces from, but not everyone is working towards a network and not all companies/communities follow these steps.
From the maturation model the class moved on to the Commitment Curve. It was discussed that the commitment curve needs to be scalable community to community, an opinion heavily aided by Steve’s personal experience and the fact that attending an event in some communities represents and exceptional level of commitment, but in others really doesn’t take much effort or exhibit much dedication.