Stuff vs. Fluff – Welcome to my Frustration.

I’m professionally frustrated and I’m not sure what to do about it.  So consider this my “bitch” session because I’m not sure where else to vent these frustrations.

All community managers are not the same…at least that’s what I’m discovering.  I’ve got a LOT of practical experience building and managing communities with 1 million+ users.  I’ve been through that process several times and consider myself something of an expert, although there is ALWAYS more to learn.  So, I put myself into the “stuff” category because I get stuff done…I’m in the trenches of my communities on a daily basis and I work, daily, towards a better end.

Then there are the “Fluff” community managers.  These people are the “faces” that corporate America wants representing it’s brand.  These CM’s that don’t actually manage communities.  They don’t deal with end users.  They don’t resolve issues.  They don’t write bug tickets.  They don’t deal with engineers.  They aren’t chained to a computer, responsible for insuring a better user experience.

So…what do the “Fluff’ers” do?  They make appearance at conventions.  They travel on behalf of the company.  They are “yes” people who are more concerned with appearance than with functionality.  They’re asked to guest blog on other websites.  They get company sponsored business cards with “Community Manager” printed on them.  They get paid a lot of money.

There are several things I don’t understand…like “why?”  In most occupations, if you don’t perform up to your job description you wouldn’t survive for very long.

If you couldn’t tell I currently fall into the first category.  As long as corporate America continues to value a flashy smile over trench work this won’t change.

Time to find an employer that respects me.



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