Community Building: Developing Vocabulary

Building an engaged Community probably requires us to consider two central ideas: firstly, that we do not actually ‘build’ it, and secondly, that there is no one ‘big’ thing to do. At best, we can create space for Community to grow, and at best we can take many small steps that nurture, develop, and safeguard it. Essentially the role of the Social Leader is not to own, build and control, but rather to open, protect, and nourish.

Yesterday i shared the ’Community Star’, a simple five point tool to help shape individual action on a daily basis: today i share a simple calendar view, to indicate how we may take action over time to build individual vocabulary around each of the five areas, as well as developing a view of our own areas of focus.

I use this term ‘vocabulary’, because mastery of any subject or technique is less about parrot style duplication, as much as it is about art and nuance. Taking an idea and making it your own: hearing a story and retelling it in your own words.

The framework i share here indicates how one may use each of the five points across a single week, and all of the five points multiple times across e.g. four weeks. But come the fifth week, we should seek to introduce our own new ideas. Essentially, to keep introducing new words into our Community vocabulary.

As with much of our exploration of Communities, there is not one ‘big’ answer, beyond saying ‘do good things consistently over time’. Act with humility and fairness, and learn to trade in the social currencies of the Community.

The Community Builder Guidebook

As a reminder, if you are interested in Community Building, i have two other free resources you can use: the Community Builder Guidebook is available as a free resource, and i am #WorkingOutLoud to develop the Community Builder Action Cards.

About julianstodd

Author, Artist, Researcher, and Founder of Sea Salt Learning. My work explores the context of the Social Age and the intersection of formal and social systems.
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