The Community Handbook

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⚖️ How do you find the balance between engaging with new members and reactivating the dormant ones?

Have you ever felt out of your depth, like a fraud, and just guessed/bullshitted your way through the situation, petrified that at any time, someone was going to call you on it? - Mike-Cannon Brookes

Communities always serve a purpose. Once that purpose is served, people often leave or stay dormant, that’s just a fact all community builders have to come face-to-face with. In community there’s the 90-9-1 rule in which out of 100, 90 will be lurkers, 9 would be adopters or active users of the product, and 1 would be an ardent fan. Of course, this is just an outline and entirely subjective, but the point is that most (if not all) communities are dominated by lurkers and you can’t force people to be a part of something that probably doesn’t serve a purpose to them anymore. So, the focus should be on engaging and interacting more with that handful of members who reciprocate with the community just as much as you do.  

In a way, you don’t have to find that balance, if people find your community worth their time and see people get recognized, they’ll stick around and engage too.

In 2018, I took a Udacity course in front-end web development and found the community managers to be stellar advocates who were really motivating. I was looking to break into tech, and got inspired and started applying for community-type jobs as a result. I landed my first gig at Khan Academy, where I led and managed volunteer groups for a year before moving onto Quora to oversee writer and power user programs, and am now doing the same at Retool. - Alina Din, Community Manager at Retool

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