I work most mornings from a café just down
the road. Most of our clients have met me there at least once.
I can predict, with some accuracy, the
order that people will come in to the café, what coffee they will buy, where
they will sit, and what they will do (talk with friends, use a laptop, read a
newspaper/magazine, work etc…).
The café is next to a preschool. Before it
opens, plenty of mums bring their children into the cafe. I can match every
child to every parent. Sometimes I’m asked to watch a child for a moment while
the parent uses the bathroom, buys a coffee, pays for parking.
It’s a mini-community at best, but it’s
once we all appreciate. I don’t have to drag my laptop with me when I use the
bathroom. I know people are watching it (this isn't a cue to steal my laptop!)
People like familiarity and routines in their communities. It creates the environment for regular interactions and mutual trust/understanding to develop. Your members like to know what to expect next. They
want to recognize the names of most participants in the community. You can
disrupt this sometimes, but I wouldn’t aim for permanent disruption.
This is why a good calendar helps. You
initiate the same categories of discussions, publish the same categories of content,
and schedule the same activities every week.
In another social group, it might sound boring. For communities, it's helpful.