Establishing Early Group Norms

February 7, 2014Comments Off on Establishing Early Group Norms

Group norms are established early by the founder.

If you always expected newcomers to tell a short story about their biggest success/failure, it will soon become a norm. Other members will begin to anticipate, perhaps demand it. 

If regulars are always expected to warmly welcome the newcomers, ask questions, and, respond positively to their first post, it soon becomes a norm. People are pestered if they haven't greeted a newcomer. 

If members are expected to share (or not share) information about their personal lives, career, this again becomes a norm.

Even the tone of voice can become a norm. If you encourage sarcasm, friendliness, politeness, soon this will be the norm throughout the community.

Too often, we wait for norms to form by default instead of pursuing the ones most useful to the long-term success of the community. 

You have a big opportunity at the beginning of a new community to establish the right norms. You can ask members why they haven't participate in a few weeks, why they haven't greeted the newcomer, tease them about the quality or limited quantity of contributions, and use the tone of voice you want to be adopted by all members. 

When people enter new social settings, they look for behavioral cues. You provide those cues. They early actions you take will have a long-term impact for the community.

Be decisive about what the norms of the group should be. Make it different from other groups which exist in your topic. Your norms can have an incredibly powerful long-term impact upon the success of the community. They can encourage activity and set you apart from any existing groups. 


From Feb 20 to 21, we're hosting the Virtual Community Summit in London.

This is the first event dedicated to mastering the psychology you can use to increase growth, activity, and the value of any community. Learn more, click here.

Comments Off
©2018 FeverBee Limited, 1314 New Providence Wharf, London, United Kingdom E14 9PJ FEVERBEE

We’d like you to join us.

We’re a group of community professionals who push each other to the cutting edge of our work. Every day we share our experiences, highlight new expertise, and push one another to become the best community builders we can be.

The day you join, you’ll get access to 1000+ practical tips, dozens of resources, and unlimited access to the top experts in our space. You’ll also get to see how we go about building a community amongst our own audience.

It takes just 30 seconds and doesn’t cost a thing.

CLICK HERE AND JOIN FEVERBEE

Level Price  
ALL COURSES The price for membership is $750.00 per month or $7,200.00 per year
Select
Community Development Program The price for membership is $1,100.00 per month or $10,560.00 per year
Select
Director of Community The price for membership is $8,770.00 per month
Select