An Insider’s Perspective on Getting Started in The Community World

Taylor Harrington
Groove With Us
Published in
3 min readMay 11, 2022

--

Where are all the community leaders hanging out?

Last year, I was looking for my first role in community. After many coffee conversations and hours of research, I felt like I was finally on the other side of a big red, theater curtain. I had peeked behind it, looked around, and thought, “Oh, this space is SO me!” and joined on in.

This space shouldn’t be so secret though. It should be easier for folks to find out more about it when they’re peeking around.

For someone new to the community space, these are the top places I’d recommend to start finding folks to follow, listen to, read about, and engage with.

1. Slack Groups

Community Club is my go-to. It’s an extremely supportive community. I enjoy seeing what folks post inside the #community-questions channel, asking for support as needed, and seeing what cool work everyone is doing when they say hello in #introductions. This community really helps remind me that my questions and challenges aren’t all that unique, another community leader out there has worked through them too. I recently participated in the Community Club Mentorship Program and had the pleasure of learning from the incredible, Heather Merrick.

CMX is talked about in the same conversation with Community Club a lot, and I find there’s a lot of overlap among the audiences. CMX is my go-to place for learning about cool events in the community space. Their Slack is always buzzing with webinars, virtual panels, meetups, and more.

Both Slack channels have AWESOME sections on jobs too.

2. Twitter

I had a totally inactive Twitter before I was looking for a community role, and then I learned that it’s really the biggest place community leaders gather and share awesome tips. Just 10 minutes a day on Twitter catches me up to speed on things happening in the community world and engage with people I admire.

Some of my favorite follows, in no particular order: @rosiesherry @Max_Pete @caremjo @KatVellos @rachelbasoco @erinmikail @techlorax @tiffeoda @jillrossco @MarjorieAyyeee @NoeleFlowers @evanhamilton @HelloKrystalWu @jenny_community @MichelleSims_ @DavidSpinks @priyaparker … there are SO many more. Just check out my following list on Twitter. Hashtags to check out: #CommunityTwitter #cmgr

3. Newsletters

Newsletters are an incredible way to stay in the loop with what’s going on in the community world. Many of these newsletters shout out other community leaders (and sometimes even link to their recent tweets!). Plus, reaching out to a writer of one of these newsletter’s is an incredible way to share you appreciate their work as a reader. A few noteworthy favorites: Community Manager Breakfast, Community Club Weekly, Kat Vellos’ newsletter, Uncommunity and Rosieland.

4. Events

In addition to Community Club and CMX, Heartbeat, Topia, and Bramble have hosted some cool events I’ve attended, mostly from finding out on Twitter. If you’re curious if they’re hosting any more soon, I’d reach out to their teams via email. And, of course, Creative Mornings has a soft spot in my heart when I’m looking to play and hang out with cool humans, not necessarily in the Community space.

5. Job Boards

So excited about this space, you’re ready to hop in? Check out this tweet for the job boards I enjoyed taking a look at during my search.

Over the last year, I’ve found that the Community space is extremely generous and supportive. I’m so grateful to work in a space where folks across companies, industries, and experience levels are willing to help each other out. I’m hopeful that the more resources like these are shared, the easier it will be for other folks to make the leap into the community world.

--

--

Taylor Harrington
Groove With Us

Head of Community @ Groove 💃🏼🕺🏼 Love bringing people together ✨ Curious about the future of work, community, & online learning 🤔 Board game player + reader