My Skills Go Above and Beyond WordPress – Transforming Thorns into Teammates

I have worked in the WordPress space for 18 years and counting. In this period, I have run communities, managed communities, interacted with, and developed a rapport with A LOT of people.

At my last job, one of my responsibilities was to help administer a Facebook group, which has nearly 30K members. At the time, the consensus among some team members was to shut it down, as it had become a giant pain to pay attention to, mostly due to posts from specific people.

I decided to work my magic by diving in head first to understand these people and why they were thorns in people’s sides. It turns out that when you stop nurturing and guiding a community, the people who have been there the longest and the most active take over. They play the role of administrators and answer the most questions as they generally have the most experience with the product.

It took some convincing, a bit of a revamp of the rules and their enforcement, and numerous private messages with some of the most active people in the group before I was able to transform them into assets. All it took was for me to have one-on-one conversations with these people, understand where they’re coming from and where they’re at, and make myself available to work WITH THEM and not AGAINST THEM.

After about six or seven months, I turned these people into team players. They reported people who used AI in their responses, reported bots, spam, rule breakers, and more. We were making the group better together.

After notifying these team members today that I would no longer have access to the group and that they should contact someone else if they encounter issues, Dennis Hall presented me with this message.

It was a pleasure dealing with you as well. I feel they’re losing a valuable player on their side and am pretty sure they’ll ignore this group moving forward. The group really needed someone to uphold the rules they placed as well as acting as a go-between to represent their user-base from a non-technical point of view.

All the best to you.

Dennis Hall – Learning Templates

Shoutouts to Dennis Hall and Ryk Melck, two of the most active members of the group who became members of my team. Thank you both for helping maintain order to allow for knowledge sharing.

Speaking to people without bullshitting them will take you a long way.