Every community needs role players. No, I’m not talking about LARP-ing. I’m talking about people who each fill a niche or two. Without these people your community will struggle. This is not an all inclusive list but these are four essential roles in your community. It’s also important to keep in mind that individuals can and do fill different roles at different times.
- Leader(s): every community needs a leader or a couple people who lead. These people should guide your community toward its mission while consistently appraising the state of it. Great leaders serve first and with creativity.
- Mentors: as community changes and more people are added it’s easy to lose sight of the foundation. Mentors should be proven members of community who can help guide other members toward the mission. These individuals will turn your community from exclusive to inclusive when they bring their A game because their goal is investing in the people working in the community.
- Stewards: someone in your community has to be willing to put rubber to the road. In other words, stewards focus on serving the group through action. When volunteers are needed they step up and get the job done.
- Principles: much like the president his a cabinet a leader needs a group of advisors. Principles serve the role of keeping the leaders of a community focused on the mission. They should also be the first to step in when a member of the community is in need.
These roles don’t necessarily need to be defined in your community. In naturally occurring communities these roles should reflect the informality of the situation. Organizations that function as communities usually already have these set roles in one way or another. If your community is struggling maybe it’s because one of these roles isn’t being filled well.
- Who defines these roles in your community? How do you praise them for the role they serve?
- What role do you play in your community?