👋 This Tuesday I'm holding a free event on Community Discovery, save your spot!
This week we cover:
1️⃣ Communities are the new conference
2️⃣ F.A.S.T - The Four Contributing Roles at Conferences
3️⃣ I took Bing Image Creator for a spin
4️⃣ The Need for More Inclusive Leadership Narratives
5️⃣ Community Economies: Reframing Wealth Building
6️⃣ You don’t need better relationships - you need more connection
7️⃣ Deplatforming works!
8️⃣ AI tools for community building: how it can help
First up, thanks to our sponsors...
Harold Jarche writes on communities being the new conference. It is always interesting to hear other people's journey's towards learning.
In my own experience, I built a community first, which naturally led to hosting a conference. It made me think again about how there are many entry points into community. Conferences are just one way to lead to community.
Another thing this reminded me of is that often it feels like conferences have such high expectations that we can never truly deliver on. Some people come to learn. Others to connect. Everyone needs time to reflect and process. And there's never enough time to process.
Behind every conference, there should be a community, that enables further connection and learning. Of course, I'd say that!
This leads on nicely to...
In my role at Ministry of Testing, we've given a specific focus to the idea that a speaker is not what makes a conference. The reality is that it takes a village to create one.
On that basis we are giving equal love and compensation to the following roles that will help make our conference happen:
- The Facilitator: Create and facilitate a group activity
- The Ambassador: Advocate for TestBash through curation (reviewing sessions) and creating community connection before, during or after the event.
- The Speaker: Present a 20-30 minute talk
- The Teacher: Host a 99-minute workshop
😆 And, of course, this is what I made.
Isn't it wonderful to see leadership with an emphasis on being community-driven? It's about the people, rather than being a hero.
“The dominant narrative around leadership in many areas of the world centers individualism over solidarity. It suggests that there is one kind of leadership and that a single person—one who intervenes to solve a problem or envision a bold new reality—embodies it. This “hero narrative” shows up in all spheres of life—in the lone TV show detective, for example, and in memoirs that credit Apple’s success primarily to Steve Jobs’ vision and relentless drive. It’s in remembrances of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s work, which often leave out the stories of the people and activists who guided him and who took their own risks and actions toward greater justice.
The deeply entrenched notion of a leader as an individual hero is not accidental. Many individuals and organizations with positional power want to maintain the status quo—rooted in racism, colonialism, sexism, and other “isms”—of who has power and who has a voice. […]
The article then goes on to broaden what leadership is:
- Leadership manifests in multiple ways. It is as complex and dynamic as the people, communities, and situations that call it into being. Inspirations and actions that drive change are both individual and collective.
- Leadership is community-driven. It is relational and anchored in the wisdom of the people most impacted by social injustices. They understand their community’s needs and assets and have vital insights into potential solutions.
- Leadership, when diversified, drives systemic change. When there is room for all ways of leading, root causes and solutions come to light. Organizations and movements can accelerate change by shifting structures and cultures to support leadership in all its forms.
I actually found the above leadership article as a result of this one on Community Economics. It's a great read with so many resources to link to.
I find the community economy fascinating, and like Thomas Klaffke, I do believe that it is the answer to how we should approach our the world, life and systems. It's easier said than done, we need more action, more practical attempts at making these things a reality.
This is a wonderful piece that shows the difference between connection and relationships. It's so easy to talk about 'relationship building' and forget the need to do 'connecting'.
No real surprises here, but it's great to see some research into it. (h/t to Every in Moderation)
As a community person it can be so easy to get sucked into a position where dominant or dangerous voices gain too much attention. Sometimes, the best strategy is not to give these people an easy way to express themselves. Deplatforming is the last resort.
Carmen Taubman looks at some AI tools and how to use them with a community context. You won't believe tool number 3! (Just kidding!)
One a more serious note, I've started an AI channel withing Rosieland Glitter so we can intentionally share and learn about AI in the context of community.