The next Community Manager Advancement Day is January 25, 2021. This year’s theme is one that truly feels fitting for the moment: Resilience.

Resilience is the ability to bounce back regardless of what hit us. And this year, the world was dealt an unbelievable hand. Individuals, communities, companies—we all had to adapt to a new normal. This was the year we learned how important it is to be agile, nimble, and resilient to challenges.

In 2020, the community industry was in the spotlight like never before. People needed so much more than emails of reassurance—they needed community. Loneliness was on the rise well before the world went into lockdown, and it only became more pronounced as we shut our doors to the outside world. Humans seek out communities to make us feel safe, supported and validated, especially in times as difficult as this year.

Below, Jeremiah Owyang, the creator of Community Manager Advancement Day, breaks resilience and community down into three areas:

  1. Resilience of the Self (Community Professionals)
  2. Resilience of Communities
  3. Resilience of Organizations and Society

1. Resilience of the Self

While most of us have not been on an airplane this year, we still understand the importance of putting on your own mask before helping others. In many ways, the resilience of a community is shaped by its leader. Resilience isn’t something we innately have; it’s something we build. Community professionals need to also be leaders in building the strength and the will to get back up again.

2. Resilience of Communities

There is no manual for how to manage a community during a global pandemic (although I’m sure many CMX’ers could write one by now). Many communities experienced challenges this year and were forced to pivot their entire strategy. Resilience isn’t just about getting back up again; it’s also about preparing for difficulty, meaning communities need to be built to be resilient right from the beginning.

3. Resilience of Organizations and Society

At CMX Summit 2020, several of our keynote speakers touched on the challenge of seeing their entire business model upended by COVID-19. For some companies, community surfaced as a key driver of resiliency that could keep employees or customers engaged in an all-virtual normal. Will strong communities help society bounce back from this year?

“When companies are trustworthy and have a fantastic community around them, then 90% of customers will actually continue and spend more with those kinds of companies, even in a market like we are facing right now.” -Yamini Rangan, Chief Customer Officer of Hubspot, CMX Summit 2020

Throughout the month of January, we’ll be celebrating CMX members and the theme of resilience. Stay tuned for the following special events and celebrations:

Finally, I encourage you all to take a moment to reflect on your own resilience. How do you personally overcome hardship, or adapt to new challenges? Have your community members come together in new ways?  Is community helping your company navigate unprecedented change?

Share your story with the CMX community, and you could be featured in an upcoming post on the CMX blog!

Beth McIntyre

Beth is the Head of Community at Bevy and CMX. She oversees the engagement, strategy, and structure of all our CMX Community Programs, as well as the CMX Connect program – an in-person distributed e...

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