Communities at the center of knowledge development and innovation

Carla Suissa

Organizations are often compared to living organisms and just like a living organism their borders with their environment are porous.

Within the company and also around it, groups organize spontaneously to form communities. In some instances, these communities are created by management and in some cases they emerge spontaneously.

When it comes to innovation and learning, communities are an extremely effective model. that offers members the freedom to share, to make mistakes, to test, while being relatively free from internal processes. It is “an unlikely marriage between two radically opposed cultures”; on the one hand, the company that is defined by its workflows, rules and decision processes, and on the other, a spontaneous group of individuals pushing ideas.

These characteristics make Communities a source of profound transformation. For example, HR departments must integrate this form of organization into all existing processes. If the community favors knowledge sharing, it has a very favorable impact on the skills development policy. Similarly, the way in which continuous training is approached must be reviewed and communities factored in. Active participation in a community makes for one of the most effective methods of learning.

Now that we are convinced that communities are almost indispensable vectors of transformation , we still need to attract potential members to the appropriate communities. This is about bringing together enthusiasts, strengthening the ties that bind them and enabling them to strengthen their sense of belonging to the community.

Everyone has a natural need to build their own identity. Identity is the representation of oneself, and it can be physical or digital. Belonging to different communities is one way to strengthen one’s identity and define ourselves in relation to others. A great example can be found in the multiplication of communities in social networks.
Membership in a community can be embodied as much by material signs such as a piece of garment, a sports car, or a tattoo, as by immaterial items such as an accent, a video game, a hashtag… or even an NFT (Non-Fungible Token).

Read also : Creating communities for successful customer relationship transformation

NFTs help to strengthen the links between enthusiasts and to assert one’s membership in a community, particularly on social networks. This emerging trend is really a symptom that communities are becoming even more important in a connected world. Whether you are a basketball fan and part of the NBA Top shot platform, or a vampire fan with the Sneaky Vampire Syndicate NFTs.

For example, by buying and posting on twitter a Crypto punk or Bored Ape Yacht Club profile (like Snoop Dog, Steve Aoki or even brands like Adidas), you are signifying that you are part of this group of people who understand what NFTs are, and that they have a real value for you – be it emotional, financial, or otherwise.
As well as signifying belonging, NFTs allow communities to come together around specific passions. Just as Harley-Davidson fans will gather to ride on the road together, digital communities will develop their own meeting places.
For example, the Sneaky Vampires only meet online in a dedicated space accessible only to NFT owners. They have created their own metaverse.

According to a Gartner study, by 2026, 25% of people will spend at least one hour a day in Metaverse for work, shopping, education, social networking or leisure.

Musicians and artists are also taking advantage of this to offer new sharing experiences. Snoop Dogg invited his fans to a concert on The Sandbox which they could attend by purchasing an NFT ticket. If today a part of the TN clip is accessible, by buying a GDC card in NFT, aficionados of the singer have exclusive access to the clip of the song released in November 2021.

All those who claim to be early fans in an emerging trend now have a way to prove it, but above all to take part in the success of the community founders. This is what the Public Pressure platform allows for music, for example.

Thus, today, NFTs are a new way to choose and build one’s own identity. They represent belonging to a culture and a community. Therefore, at a time when Web3 is being built, we should think about NFTs as a claim to participate in the elaboration of a certain future. They are above all another way of telling our story through our external image, another way of forging links and living shared experiences.

As we can see communities are really a trend that is strengthening in and outside the corporation and will only become stronger in coming years as Web3 and NFTs become prevalent. Fortunately, this trend is a positive one when it comes to Change Management. Communities are an extremely powerful incubator for all the ingredients of a successful transformation: innovation, learning and collaboration.