What do people show up for?

What do people show up for?
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Every day it seems like people are busier and busier and adults barely have any time to socialize or make new friends. It seems like no one knows their neighbors. This is a hard reality to accept for a community manager, someone who is tasked with building up a community and trying to form bonds between the people within? What kinds of community building programs will busy adults show up for? Because we truly believe that humans inherently desire community, they just don’t prioritize it. That’s where you come in! We’re here today to offer you three ways that you can optimize attendance and interest in your community building activities.

1. Ready Availability
It’s a hard truth to accept that a lot of the time even if you send out emails or invitations to events, people will just flat out ignore them. The people of your community have so much on their minds and on their plates that getting to know their community is not something they ill probably actively plan. However, if you hold an activity somewhere that is already somewhere where they might be going, that will make them far more likely to see your event, get interested in it, and stay for a while. For example, if you manage a community in an apartment building, hold your events in the lobby so that your residents can pass by and become interested in what’s going on.

2. Reoccurring Schedule
The second step to optimizing attendance to community building events is to make sure they happen on a recurring schedule. For example, if you hold an event every Monday, people can start to get a grasp on it, become interested, and eventually make it a part of their routine. Also, if they miss a couple of the events and starts hearing positive feedback about them, they are more likely to make a solid plan to attend the next one! These obviously don’t have to be once a week. You could do monthly or even quarterly events. You could do annual events, but that might be too far apart to see the benefits of the reoccurring scheduling. Another wonderful thing about reoccurring scheduling s that after a while when your residents get the hang of it, you don’t even really NEED to be there. The tradition can just go on without you.

3. Make it beneficial
Finally, let’s remember that humans are a tad bit selfish inherently. Adults only really want to make plans that are out of order from their life schedules if it’s going to be beneficial to them. This is why one of the first community building events we like to suggest is something like a little morning coffee and chat. You want your residents to get together for a second on their way out to work or their way in from the gym and chat over a cup of coffee. If there is one thing adults will sprint to, its free coffee.
We hope we gave you some ideas for how you can optimize attendance and community building retention. We know that managing a community of adults can be very tricky and it can be a journey to try to get through to the people of your community. Trust us though, humans can be tough, social, and habit forming creatures, so if you follow these 3 steps you are appealing to your resident’s most basic needs. As hard as people may try to avoid it, they’ll probably get interested of they overhear a conversation amongst their peers about something fun they’ve been doing, they’ll want to try it out!