Phoebe Venkat was the community manager for Tyco’s 24,000-person network and imparts some real world advice on a wide range of community management topics.
Number one most important characteristic is to be 1000% transparent. You have to be able to take the good and bad feedback — and everything in between — and make sense of it without taking it personally. Believe me, there are times when you get upset, but you have to be able to make it work for the greater good. And when you misspeak, be honest about it. You have to admit when you’re wrong, do it quickly, and make amends when necessary. That helps build trust with people you may never meet in person. Additionally, the community manager has to be connected, empathetic, fast, a (smart) risk taker, and fun!