Originally published December 1, 2015

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I was asked in a tweet, “What is a Community Evangelist? Are you a priest? Do you belong to a religious order?” I was asked again in our internal enterprise social network (ESN), “Could you tell me about the Community Evangelist?”

I am not a priest, and I don’t belong to a religious order. Here is what I do as a community evangelist. You can adapt this to other, similar roles, such as social media evangelist, social business evangelist, enterprise collaboration evangelist, and all permutations of these terms.

1. Evangelize

  • Promote effective use of communities, ESNs, and collaboration across organizational boundaries
  • Establish collaboration use cases, differentiate available tools, and recruit new community leaders, contributors, and members

2. Provide program and project management

  • Lead formal programs for communities, ESNs, and collaboration
  • Manage projects for communities, ESNs, and collaboration

3. Lead by example

  • Regularly post, reply, like, praise, and share in communities and ESNs
  • Lead communities and ESN groups

4. Educate

  • Develop, maintain, and deliver training on communities, ESNs, and collaboration
  • Regularly post tips on communities, ESNs, and collaboration

5. Communicate

  • Publish and maintain documentation, web sites, and FAQs
  • Maintain lists and directories

6. Implement

  • Define, document, implement, and manage processes for creating new communities and ESN groups
  • Respond to requests, help implement new communities and ESN groups, and help communities and ESN groups merge or split as required

7. Support

  • Work with IT and vendors to implement, maintain, and improve platforms
  • Answer questions, respond to people seeking help, and talk to those requesting new communities and sites

8. Report

  • Produce and publish periodic health reports for communities and ESN groups
  • Produce and distribute periodic reports on new communities and ESN groups

9. Govern

  • Establish guidelines, principles, and creation/retention/deletion criteria for communities and ESNs
  • Monitor creation and activity, moderate content according to guidelines, intervene as required, merge redundant groups, delete inactive groups, and help retire communities when no longer needed

10. Deliver and use thought leadership

  • Post in and follow external social media; post, reply, and learn in external communities; and publish and read articles
  • Present at industry conferences and network with colleagues at other organizations

In a nutshell, I regularly share my vision for how communities can enable effective sharing, innovation, reuse, collaboration, and learning. I show how communities work better for sharing, asking, finding, answering, recognizing, informing, and suggesting than alternatives such as email, repositories, or directories. And I actively lead and participate in communitiesto stay in touch with what works, what doesn’t work, and how people, processes, and technology enable successful communities.

Links to additional information

  1. Posts about communities
  2. Understanding the Community/Evangelist Role, and profiles of a few of my Favorite Folks by Jeremiah Owyang
  3. Who can be a Community Evangelist? by Chris Salazar
  4. Is Community Evangelism the job of the future? by Mario Sundar
  5. Jobs of the future, #1: Online Community Organizer by Seth Godin
  6. Instagram’s 5th Employee: Their Community Evangelist by Gabriel Beltrone
  7. Tips on being community evangelist for your startup by Srinivas Kulkarni
  8. Dear Social Business Evangelist, Where Art Thou? by Luis Suarez
  9. What is a Community Evangelist? by Marc Manashil
  10. Top 25 Community Evangelist profiles in LinkedIn
  11. Community Evangelist Jobs currently posted in LinkedIn
  12. Presentation version of this article

Are you an evangelist? If so, what do you do in this role?

Written by

Knowledge Management Author and Speaker, Founder of SIKM Leaders Community, Community Evangelist, Knowledge Manager https://sites.google.com/site/stangarfield/

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