Shana Lynn Bresnahan: So is there anybody that is open to. Making sure I'm not the only voice on this. Share Matt. I love it.
Matt: Yeah. Thank you Shanna. You mentioned how the culture can evolve and, I guess maybe I'm a lot like other community members, who just dove in and are just trying to feel my way around through my community.
So already you're giving me some amazing value. But I think one of the things that Meza and the Heartbeat team have done for us, With the introduction and the onboarding is given us a perfect tool to be able to com to communicate those three things the beliefs, behaviors, and the boundaries to set the table as people are just getting into it.
I, to me I'm gonna go back and rerecord my introductory video because it doesn't have enough of that in there. It doesn't, it creates a welcome, but it doesn't set up those expectations, so I just, I thought that was something that was really cool already. A good takeaway.
Shana Lynn Bresnahan: Yeah, and I love that you mentioned this, Matt.
He's bringing up something that's really important is something that I love to preach, which is the first 45 days in a community member's journey are the most important and will most likely determine whether they stay in your community or not. And that a hundred percent comes back to the onboarding.
And so usually when people go through this exercise of walking through these pillars, that's the first thing they think about. Oh man, I need to go back and I need to record that welcome video again. Or, do my onboarding emails differently, or whatever it might be. Because we get to set those expectations and it's kind for us to set the expectations, but it's not just, It's not just setting those boundaries like oftentimes I just see people spit guidelines and rules at people.
We're getting people to buy into a cause. We're getting people to buy into a culture. And some of you all have these free communities. Can I tell you that when you get buy-in for the cause and the culture early on, If you ever sell anything to that community, it makes it so easy because they're already bought in and then it makes it so much easier for them to onboard cuz they're already in.
So it's just really smooth. Communities, they go through this natural life cycle of it's like norming, storming that forming, storming, norming, and performing. It's a natural lifecycle of every community, but when you're really strong on the cause and the culture early on, if it's in your marketing, if it's in your free community.
It will help you breeze through that storming phase really fast because you've already set the expectations for the community and everybody's already bought in and onboard with those. And this is the positive stuff too. This is the identity developing piece. You hear a lot of people talking about giving your community an identity.
How can we give our community an identity if we don't know who we're telling them to be and how to behave and what to do, right? That's the cause. That's the culture. That's how we help shape that identity for our community members. Olivia says, can you say that cycle again? Yes. The first step is forming.
This is when we're all just hiding, not quite sure what to do. We're figuring things out. Then people start to feel a little bit more permission. They start to feel a little bit more bold. They start to test the boundaries, just like kids test the boundaries of a playground, and that causes the storming phase.
Storming is that typical early conflict where people are just figuring out what to do and then you go to norming, which is developing normalized behavior where everybody agrees that this is what's normal around here and begins to fall online. And then we get performing, which is when we actually get to move into a high performance community because we've gotten through all of the human behavior stuff that we need to get through to create this safe environment.
But the more work you do on this framework, the faster you can move through that cycle.
Murtaza Bambot: Then one question yeah. That I know is probably like popping up and I'm curious about too is I think when you're building a community you don't actually end up setting a lot of this at the start, and then you go back and realize, oh, I'm missing this.
I need to think a lot more deeply about culture and how do I actually create this and enforce this within the community. Can you talk a little bit about how can how can we invest a little bit more in culture when the train has left the station and, we've already kicked off our community.
Maybe we have 20, 30 members in there.
Shana Lynn Bresnahan: Yeah. I, it's so funny because I get this question a lot because a lot of the clients that I work with already have thousands of members and we have to have these conversations because they're having all sorts of issues in their community. And my perfect example is my client, Tanya, who had a community of about 3000 people.
And she wasn't engaging. Her community wasn't really engaged. They were engaged in all the wrong things. She wasn't engaged with it. And I was like, what is going on? She's I don't like my community. It's not a place I wanna hang out. So we went back through this exercise to really define the culture, and what we did is we just did a reset.
So she went live in the community, they rewrote their guidelines. To be more towards the kind of person they wanted in their community. So really positive bent on the guidelines of this is what we're creating. She recorded a video where she let them know, here's the new standard and here's why we're raising the bar and why we have high expectations for this community, because we wanna create this little corner on the internet that is a safe space for you two.
Meet X, Y, Z transformation, and we know that the best way to do that is for this community to be a place where people do X, Y, and Z, and they don't do X, Y, and Z because we believe these things. So it's really nice because what happens is when you've done this work, All your community sees is that you are invested in them.
You are invested in them as a community, and you wanna create a safe space. So don't hide when you've got stuff like this that you can share that you've been rethinking, especially when you have a community of, I'd say less than 50 people for sure, but you could probably do it even a little bit higher than that.
Involve them in this process. Now, hey, I'm really starting to think about our culture. I'm really starting to define what our beliefs, what our behaviors, and what our boundaries are. And here's some things that I've come up with. What would you add to this list based on what you've experienced in our community?
What would you like to see more of that you're not seeing that would help this be a safer space for you? So when we can involve them in the process, then you get their buy-in even earlier on.
Murtaza Bambot: Awesome. I love that. Yeah. Especially the collaborative nature of all that. It's amazing.
Shana Lynn Bresnahan: Yeah. This is stuff like anytime we involve people our community in this process, they just get more bought in.