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5 Community Managers on How to Excel in Your Role

We asked 5 of the very best coworking community managers in the biz, what does it take to be an exceptional community manager? Here’s what they said.
By Kelly K
March 18, 2024
5 Community Managers on How to Excel in Your Role

Being a community manager is undoubtedly one of the most challenging jobs in all of coworking. 

You need someone who is deeply compassionate, but isn’t afraid to lay down the law. Someone who can manage a sales cycle and unclog a drain. Someone who can host a mean happy hour, remember the name of every member’s pet, and who shows up with a smile on their face, even when they’re having a bad day.

It takes a special kind of person to be a great community manager. If and when you find them, be sure to hold on tight.

We asked 5 of the very best coworking community managers in the biz, what does it take to be an exceptional community manager? Here’s what they said it takes to excel in the world of community management.

1. Get to know your members

Charlotte Kirby, Founder, with Mitch Reiss and Monica Hecht, Community Managers, at The Village Hive Coworking (photo taken from Toronto Sun)
Charlotte Kirby, Founder, with Mitch Reiss and Monica Hecht, Community Managers, at The Village Hive Coworking (Photo from The Village Hive)

Being a community manager means that it is your job to make people feel welcomed in the space. For Mitch Reiss, Community Manager at The Village Hive Coworking, excelling as a community manager is all about getting to know your members and building trust. Here’s what Mitch had to say about being great in his role.

“An exceptional community manager gets to know their members, building trust and creating a space where people look forward to coming in each day,” says Mitch. “They strive to establish an environment that goes beyond just a place to work; it’s a place to grow, build connections, make friends, and be productive.

An exceptional community manager fosters all of that and ensures that each member’s needs are met. They create an atmosphere where members feel comfortable asking for help, advice, or even recommendations for a good place to eat.”

"An exceptional community manager gets to know their members, building trust and creating a space where people look forward to coming in each day. They create an atmosphere where members feel comfortable asking for help, advice, or even recommendations for a good place to eat.”
Mitch Reiss, Community Manager at The Village Hive Coworking

2. Foster inclusivity

FLEX coworking space
FLEX Coworking space (Photo from the FLEX coworking team)

A community manager helps people feel like they are a part of the community, no matter who they are. That’s why Suzie Gebrayel, Workspace Manager at Flex Coworking, believes the best way to excel as a community manager is to foster inclusivity. 

Here’s what Suzie had to say about fostering inclusivity.

“Community management is not just about managing a space. It’s about making sure that everyone feels welcome, valued, and respected in our space. At Flex Coworking we place great emphasis on connection and how our space can connect people, places and ideas to activate an inclusive community.

Fostering inclusivity means recognizing and celebrating the diversity of our members, and providing them with opportunities to connect, collaborate, and learn from each other. We understand each individual/team has different passions, and it’s important that each get to explore the Flex Coworking experience. 

We do this through an array of events that cater to each individual’s interests from finance lunch and learns, Pilates classes, complimentary breakfasts and charity fundraisers. It also means being aware of and addressing any potential barriers or challenges that might prevent some members from fully participating or benefiting from our community.

Fostering inclusivity is not a one-size-fits-all approach, but rather a continuous process of listening, learning, and adapting. By fostering inclusivity, you can create a positive and supportive environment for your members, and enhance their sense of belonging and satisfaction.”

“Community management is not just about managing a space. It's about making sure that everyone feels welcome, valued, and respected in our space.”
Suzie Gebrayel, Workspace Manager at Flex Coworking

3. Create an exceptional experience

Modus coworking space
Modus Coworking Community (Photo from Modus Coworking Team)

Community managers have the power to make or break the entire coworking experience. A sour community manager will ensure you never return to the space, while someone exceptional will leave you glowing for days.

Nicole Looney, Community Manager at Modus Coworking, believes excelling as a community manager is all about providing the best possible experience that you can. 

“To excel as a community manager is to ensure the best experience possible for your members. To succeed at this you must listen and hear your members’ requests and concerns,” says Nicole.

Nicole says building relationships with members and exceeding expectations whenever possible is paramount to creating an experience that sticks.

“At Modus Coworking, we take pride in making the experience exactly what each member wants it to be; we are constantly making changes and adding benefits to exceed expectations. On top of that, we value our community and the relationships we form. 

We build a close relationship with every member and connect them with other members in the community to strengthen all networks and possibilities.” 

"To excel as a community manager is to ensure the best experience possible for your members. We build a close relationship with every member and connect them with other members in the community to strengthen all networks and possibilities.”
Nicole Looney, Community Manager at Modus Coworking

4. Treat each member like a friend

Katie Cartwright, Community Manager at Downtown Works (Photo from LinkedIn)

Everyone wants to make a friend at work. That’s why Katie Cartwright, Community Manager at Downtown Works, goes out of her way to welcome each new member as if they are a new, personal friend to Katie.

“Like all good things, it takes time to understand your community – I welcome each new member as a new friend, and that attitude has cultivated a really cool environment,” says Katie.

It is exactly this authentic and compassionate approach that keeps members coming back.

“People want to come in every day, rather than the traditional “ugh” energy of going into the office. Creating that strong foundation means that our members look to each other for support, regularly attend happy hours, and create relationships outside of the space as well.”

“I welcome each new member as a new friend, and that attitude has cultivated a really cool environment. Creating that strong foundation means that our members look to each other for support, regularly attend happy hours, and create relationships outside of the space as well.”
Katie Cartwright, Community Manager at Downtown Works

5. Build genuine connections

Elena Webber and Team at Downtown Works (Photo taken from Downtown Works' LinkedIn)
Elena Webber and Team at Downtown Works (Photo from LinkedIn)

Real, genuine connections are the heart and soul of a strong community. And who better to cultivate these connections than community managers.

Elena Webber, Community Manager at Downtown Works, says building connections with and between members is key to being a successful coworking community manager.

“Genuine connection & community are key! I love welcoming new faces to the space, ensuring they have a friend,” says Elena. 

She even compares your first day at a coworking space to your first day at school – a somewhat daunting experience that can be smoothed over by the best community manager. 

“Much like the first day of school, the first day at a coworking space can be daunting. Everything is new, you don’t know anyone, and you’re navigating all the unwritten rules. As a community manager, I’m there to help with any ‘silly’ questions, jog their memory about that cool person they met, and discreetly let them know their forgotten food is still in the microwave.

“While we’re all here to get work done, it’s the relationships and fun chats that make people want to come back. Building a strong foundation for each member’s experience is incredibly rewarding, and offering a smile, a listening ear, and a good laugh has always led me in the right direction.”

“While we're all here to get work done, it's the relationships and fun chats that make people want to come back.”
Elena Webber, Community Manager at Downtown Works

Excelling as a community manager

Community managers play a crucial role when it comes to delivering an exceptional coworking experience. 

Learning from the insights and expertise of five outstanding community managers, we see that being great in this role means being friendly, inclusive, and focused on providing a top-notch experience for members. 

By building genuine connections and treating everyone like a friend, these managers make coworking spaces places where people feel at home and can grow together. Take their advice to heart and work towards making our communities the best they can be.

Looking to hire your first community manager? Check out this guide on everything you need to know about the community manager role.