Community Manager

Aspen Institute Washington , DC 20319

Posted 3 months ago

Position Title: Community Manager, Weave: The Social Fabric Project

Program/Dept: Leadership Division

Position Location: Washington, DC

FLSA Status: Exempt

Full time/part time: Full-Time

The Aspen Institute is a community-serving organization with global reach. Our vision is a free, just, and equitable society. For 70 years, we have driven change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the worlds greatest challenges. Headquartered in Washington, DC, we have offices in Aspen, Colorado and New York City, as well as an international network of partners.

Weave: The Social Fabric Project operates within the Leadership Division of the Aspen Institute, leveraging Aspens networks and learnings from Weaves community leaders. The Leadership Division has developed and supported values-based leadership around the world for 70 years through its seminar offerings, youth fellowship programs, and the Aspen Global Leadership Network.

New York Times columnist and author David Brooks and the Aspen Institute started Weave: The Social Fabric Project to address cultural changes that have left Americans divided, isolated and unhappy, leading to problems from growing addiction and suicide to unequal opportunity and gridlocked politics. During the first year of the Weave project, David traveled around the country and saw a movement of people who are separately weaving the tattered social fabric by bringing communities together to support and serve each other. These Weavers are shifting our culture away from an unhealthy hyper-individualism focused solely on personal success to a more balanced culture where meaning comes from our relationships, commitments and connection. Some Weavers work at organizations: a vet who helps other mentally ill vets in New Orleans and a man who runs a boxing gym in Appalachian Ohio where he nominally teaches young men boxing, but really teaches them life. Others do their weaving in the course of everyday life. One woman in Florida said she doesnt have time to volunteer, because she spends 40 hours a week looking out for local kids and visiting sick folks in the hospital. These people have found a different way of living that is more fulfilling. Weave aims to spread their Weaver culture by shining a light on these people, connecting them for peer support and learning, and inspiring others to follow their example.

About the Role

The Community Manager will launch, grow and constantly nurture a community for Weavers. We aim to beta-launch an online community with up to 300 volunteers in December and do a rolling public welcome of others starting in January from our newsletter list of 5500. We envision a community with a hundred thousand or more members supporting each other, building relationships and defining together a better way of living.

Most of this community role will be about online connection, given the scale we expect. Yet this job also involves planning and supporting face-to-face community gatherings, both local and national, that we may create as we expand. The Community Manager will oversee all aspects of building our relationships, whether by email, newsletter, social platforms, videoconference, our community hub or in person. The first year will be focused mainly on creating a successful online hub for Weavers.

We seek an experienced manager who understands the demands of setting a content strategy, creating high user engagement and constantly listening and adjusting tactics to meet the changing needs of a community. This position will deputize and support superusers to engage others as the community grows, as well as welcome and guide aspiring Weavers who join the community.

The Community Manager will oversee the Community Associate (after 6-8 months), several Community Facilitators (part-time super-users) and other staff and interns, as needed. The manager will collaborate with the Communications Director on setting social media strategy and the Content Manager (to be hired early in 2020) on content strategy for the community.

The essential duties and responsibilities include:

Community Support

  • Responsible for the health, growth and vitality of the Weaver community. That involves many tasks, including listening to, supporting and getting to know Weavers and their needs

  • Build relationships get to know the most active members and build warm relationships, both online and through phone, videoconference, email and at in-person gatherings

  • Develop community standards introduce, explain, and compassionately enforce standards.

  • Create engagement opportunities create online and physical events, campaigns, newsletters, video chat groups, highlighted content. Write blog posts and respond to forum questions directed at Weave

  • Welcome and orient new users design, implement and improve the systems that ensure that every new user feels personally welcomed

  • Work with the Content Manager to set strategy for the platform, inspiring and collaborating with member-writers to ensure a daily flow of relevant material that spurs discussion and engagement. This includes development of resources desired by the community, organizing user-created webinars, and ensuring content is tagged appropriately and easy to find

  • Recruit, manage and support the full-time Community Associate, part-time community facilitators, interns and superuser-moderators

  • Test ideas to retain members, attract new members, increase stickiness/engagement, and improve peer to peer support and member satisfaction

  • Collect and act upon feedback through social, surveys, focus groups and other methods

Platform administration

  • Configure the online community back-end (Personify) to adjust to user needs, working with tech support at the platform vendor, setting up new sub-communities and other site features, creating tours, FAQs and newsletters, and troubleshooting

  • Train and support Weave staff, community facilitators, superusers and members on how to get the most out of the platform, as well as answer user technical questions in the forum

  • Trouble-shoot and resolve site problems or violations of community norms

  • Review and grant higher-levels of user platform privileges

  • Work with vendors to define and implement design updates and introduce new features

Data and analytics

  • Set and track weekly and monthly engagement and retention KPIs by member segments on the platform, newsletter and social properties

  • Track effectiveness of engagement through all modes and adjust strategy to improve, test and evaluate new engagement activities

  • Track and report to the team on achievement against goals

Social media, newsletters, and inquiries

  • Work with the Communications Director, Content Manager and Community Associate to set strategy and goals

  • Oversee the implementation of daily social posting and listening, weekly e-newsletters and responses to email and phone inquiries

Level of Authority:

  • Supervisory position

  • This position manages the digital platform budget, starting at approximately $50,000


  • Ability to travel to conferences and occasional meetings, to represent Weaves community building and to attend local and national in-person gatherings of Weavers

Knowledge, Education and Experience

  • Strong organizational skills and the ability to prioritize for yourself and others

  • 2+ years of project management experience, juggling multiple tasks and calendars

  • 3+ years of success managing and growing an external community using tools such as content publishing, gamification, notifications, subscriptions, superuser activation, sub-communities, etc.

  • Technical knowledge to administer a community platform, publish on content management systems, run analysis on databases and use bulk email services for e-newsletters

  • Passion for our mission of supporting Weavers and shifting US culture toward a focus on relationships

  • Outgoing, empathetic and able to quickly form warm relationships with people of all backgrounds

  • Experience setting, implementing and tracking social media strategy on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram

  • Able to write quickly and clearly with high proficiency in English.

  • Able to check in on community engagement and issues throughout the day, evening and on weekends this responsibility will be shared with other team members


  • Communications Director, Weave: The Social Fabric Project

Key Relationships:

  • Executive Director, Weave: The Social Fabric Project

  • Director, Marketing and Communications, Leadership Division

  • Weavers

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Community Manager

Aspen Institute