This month I started at Bind, experts in the field of community building. Having worked as a community manager at Tele2 for several years, I will now be setting up and managing communities for a variety of clients. Where before I was managing a single community, I will now be guiding and advising different organizations. A big step, but one that I’m very excited about.

Under the watchful eye of Kirsten Wagenaar and Peter Staal I’ve spent the past week exploring. With a new laptop, a fresh notebook and a taste for coffee, the week was off to a good start! It was wonderful to meet all our contacts at different companies. From Futureproof The Hague and a financial institution, to an infrastructure platform and an umbrella organization for libraries, all already running or developing a community! I saw some great plans, and my first week has really flown by.

Monday 4th of September: MoneYou and Probiblio

This community is focused on co-creation. The goal is to improve and even develop services and products together with community participants. This is a process I’m experienced in, which made it easy to join up with Gabriëlla, who is the community manager for the project on behalf of Bind. The platform is not live yet at the moment, but will be soon! To celebrate this, and to get the early users even more involved, we’ll be organizing an off-line event this week.

On the same day, Kirsten took me from this innovation-focussed tech world to Probiblio, an organization aiming to set up and activate a number of smaller communities with the goal of activating specific target groups and getting them more involved in their library. Quite the contrast with the first client, but it was great to see how different organizations have the same motivations when considering the use of community building.

Tuesday 5th of September: Training Community Management Frankwatching

Kirsten has been leading this training course through Frankwatching since 2012. The course is focused on developing and managing communities. In it, she lays out exactly what to expect and what’s involved in setting up and managing a community, which made it the perfect moment for me to take stock of the aspects of community management with which I was already familiar, and which elements I was less well-versed in. All in all, a very enlightening day.

Wednesday 6th of September: CROW

Kirsten, our colleague Eva and I met with the client to discuss the things that are important to their community, and the way in which the ambassadors of the platform stay involved and help others. It is crucial for experts to talk to each other and learn from each other – this makes it possible for an expert in the field of infrastructure innovation from Zeeland to share their knowledge with someone from Groningen.

Thursday 7th of September: Future Proof The Hague

Ambassadors from organizations from around the Hague were gathered here to launch the Future Proof platform. The goal is to share knowledge and experience in the field of sustainable energy, technological advancement and innovation in an online environment. To get everyone motivated and stir enthusiasm for the platform, Eva planned a get-together for all of these ambassadors. While planning such a gathering may require a lot of preparation, it will have lasting benefits. I enjoyed being there to support the goings-on. The meeting was a success, allowing Eva to really get to work with the ambassadors and expand the community. I’m very happy that I was able to join in.

From Amsterdam and Hoofddorp to Utrecht, Ede and the Hague, I got to visit all the places where Bind is active at the moment. This week has been very inspiring and has motivated me greatly to continue developing these communities together with our clients.