I’ve been working this week on a workshop for social community managers and came up with this model, which i thought i’d share today. The OAR model covers three activities: Observe, Attend and Refer.
For much of the time, the community manager can simply Observe the health of the conversation, watch the interaction play out, without ever needing to intervene. At times, they will need to Attend to specific issues, in line with their stance on Moderation. This may involve moderating comments or redirecting conversations. Finally, they may need to Refer specific queries or issues onward, to legal or subject matter expert teams.
The OAR Model is about gateways: what should you do yourself, what should you refer onwards, when should you leave it all alone.
How this is applied depends largely on stance and purpose: if the aim of the community is to co-create meaning, to share ideas and information, then less intervention is better. The true value of social learning spaces comes when the messages are co-owned with the community, not imposed by the organisation.