Originally answered Aug 13, 2017
Communities are groups of people who, for a specific subject, share a specialty, role, passion, interest, concern, or a set of problems. Community members deepen their understanding of the subject by interacting on an ongoing basis, asking and answering questions, sharing information, reusing good ideas, solving problems for one another, and developing new and better ways of doing things.
People join communities in order to:
- Share new ideas, lessons learned, proven practices, insights, and practical suggestions.
- Innovate through brainstorming, building on each other’s ideas, and keeping informed on emerging developments.
- Reuse solutions through asking and answering questions, applying shared insights, and retrieving posted material.
- Collaborate through threaded discussions, conversations, and interactions.
- Learn from other members of the community; from invited guest speakers about successes, failures, case studies, and new trends; and through mentoring.
Benefits of joining a community include:
- Communities provide the most effective and efficient way to share, ask, find, answer, recognize, inform, and suggest (SAFARIS).
- Communities help deliver 15 benefits of knowledge sharing.
- Communities are more effective than email for getting answers and resources:
- Time to receive responses: Faster
- Diversity of responses: More varied and widespread
- Volume of responses: Greater
- Probability of success: Closer to 100%