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Lithium CX Files: Wendy Schippers (HP)

Retired Community Manager JennC
Retired Community Manager

Last month, we released our first Lithium CX Files featuring @Claudius. Today we're excited to take a look at some tips and tricks from another Lithium Star, @Wendy_S! Wendy is a frequent contributor on the community, so we were excited to sit down with her and learn more about her experience managing the HP community.

 

Lithium CX Files: HP from Lithium on Vimeo.

 

Wendy manages the French and German communities for HP, and offered some great advice on how to manage multicultural communities. The challenge of managing a multicultural community is that there's no "one size fits all." The trick is to learn how they communicate and relate, but as Wendy says, it's fun to meet people from other cultures. The biggest lesson of all? Deep down, people are driven by the same things--to help other people--and that's what makes community beautiful.

 

 

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About the Author
Community Manager at Lithium Technologies, previously known as jchen.
8 Comments
Honored Contributor Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

Thanks @JennC and Aaron for inviting me to speak about our communities. I wish there was more time to share all the learnings and tips but I guess, that's what I am trying to do in the Community here. Because I...also like to help others 🙂

Frequent Advisor
Frequent Advisor

Well done @Wendy_S!!!

 

Cheers!
Dani

Honored Contributor Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

Thanks for all the experience and wisdom you share here on the Lithium community @Wendy_S

 

Great to hear your thoughts on managing communities. I admire your efforts in managing multicultural and multilingual communities so successfully.

 

Jason

Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

Wendy,

 

 

Great video and excellent points that the language (and perhaps especially so for languages that are dominant in one country or a relatively tight geographic region)  creates a nuanced culture for the community that requires you to adjust approach.

 

Do you think that some languages (and related cultures) may be more naturally active in social and community than others?   For example, I perceived the Germans to be purpose driven - down to business.   Any tips that you would share for how you adjusted what you did to encourage participation there?

 

Best regards,

 

Mark

 

Honored Contributor Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

You are spot on with your perceptions @Mark_Hopkins and I do indeed think that the level of activity, engagement and also the level of satisfaction may differ from culture to culture.

 

I believe my colleague Wander can testify that he sees a very lively engagement level in his Portuguese forum, which is mostly visited by customers from Brasil, and of course the experts being mostly from Brasil. It's cheers all over. Interesting also is that the Portuguese community also rates higher in satisfaction compared to other languages. Comparing this to for example German or French satisfaction rates, really tells a story. You can only imagine.

Well, this is really cultural (google it and you will see may researches on that topic)

 

Encouraging participation for example in our German community is a challenge. Experts are there for reasons that vary from being very intrinsic to well, almost protectors of the customer. They are in the community to help others and don't really care too much for the chit chat or side-activities.

 

I believe that you can encourage participation by learning what drives the community and the experts, their purpose and to help support that.  

Germans are indeed purpose driver, factual and down to earth. I can do lots of initiatives to encourage participation but usually it works best to drive participation by making it easier and more intuitive to do what folks come out to do. We try to supply our experts with information and knowledge that makes it easier to help other users, ensure that they connect easily with other experts.Basically anything we can do to help them do a better job will be better accepted than me trying to do a contest aimed at encouraging participation.

 

I am still learning. After all, I am not German nor French, I am Dutch, living in Europe, working for an American company with some fantastic colleagues all over the world. I am privileged that I am exposed to so many cultures, learning so much every day.

 

Frequent Commentator
Frequent Commentator

Great !  Congratulations @Wendy_S and thanks for sharing your knowledge about the management of multicultural communities, great 😄 !

 

Wishing all the best 😉

ferRX.

Occasional Contributor WanderP
Occasional Contributor

Indeed @Mark_Hopkins and @Wendy_S ! the Portuguese Communnity has around 95% of users from Brazil, and we do see that the community reflects the behaviour of the culture we live in the country. I am brazilian and I can say that culturally, brazilians they like to have attention and to be helped. When this happens, they will be very satisfied, specially in Social Media channels!

 

I also manage the Spanish Forum, where we see people coming from several countries in Latin America and Spain. The Spanish community has a different behaviour. We see that on the behaviour of users, experts, etc.

I am still learning how to approach and improve in such diverse enviroment, given the amount of "spanish language" countries, and their different way of chat in Social Media channels.

 

So, definitelly, the community's behaviour can be driven by the reginoal / geographic culture, and we need to understand it and adapt! 🙂

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Very Helpful explanation . 🙂

 

Thanks