Creating Community

Photo by Matt Mechtley

Photo by Matt Mechtley

One of the keys to creating a community is to create a sense of inclusiveness--to foster deep democracy (a term I learned at Scrum Gathering Vegas earlier this year).  Whether it's a community of practice, a user group, a team, or an organization, each member needs to feel like a valued member.  Safety and trust have to be present.

I think part of a community leader's role is like that of a stagehand--largely invisible and making sure the environment is right for the actors.  A community has its own identity, and a leader can shape it in a number of ways.  As an introvert, I try to create a place where all voices can be heard--not just the loudest, the smartest, or the funniest.  In fact, if the community leader is not attentive, the group dynamics can take a turn and drive people away.  The leader must be able to recognize the group's needs and interject as a facilitator to maintain the safety and trust for a healthy community to thrive.

How are you creating a strong community where people can be themselves?

Allison Pollard

I help people discover their agile instincts and develop their coaching abilities. As an agile coach with Improving in Dallas, I enjoy mentoring others to become great Scrum Masters, coaching managers to grow teams that deliver amazing results, and fostering communities that provide sustainability for agile transformations. In my experience, applying agile methods improves delivery, strengthens relationships, and builds trust between business and IT. A big believer in the power of community-based learning, I grew the DFW Scrum user group significantly over the five years I served as an organizer. I am also a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach, a foodie, and proud glasses wearer.