Last week, we wrapped up our second season of the Virtual Coffee (VC) Podcast with our Code and Community episode. As VC’s been growing over the last year, I’ve been working on the Virtual Coffee model for communities, and Dan and I have spent a lot of time talking through navigating the challenges and creating a direction for our unique community with the support and care of the community.

But I was especially inspired to write a highlight version of the episode when I saw Lucia’s tweet.

These are my top takeaways from this episode:

  1. We have so many ideas for the community, but there aren’t enough hours in the day to work on them all. We’re doing our best to prioritize them.
  2. We’re more than a slack of people who do meetups, events, and more. We’re “an intimate community for all devs, optimized for you.”
  3. The face-to-face conversations are a key part of our identity. And it’s important to us that we keep our breakout rooms small to allow opportunities for everyone to join in the conversation.
  4. It’s easier to stretch and grow when you know you have the support of the community.
  5. We’re inspired by the book Radical Candor! Clear and honest communication are important tools for trust and growth.
  6. We think of Virtual Coffee as an open source community.
  7. Building deliberately and creating structures and processes to empower members to help takes time.
  8. We’re never going to put content behind a paywall.
  9. Tooling with a team can be really expensive, and it’s challenging to find services that allow people to help when you have a small community and no funding .
  10. The goal of the Virtual Coffee Model is to have a lasting impact on your community, to create ripples that extend far beyond your community.
  11. So much of community tooling is based on making money off our your members. Since that’s not our goal, it’s been challenging to find a good fit.
  12. As community leadership, you can see each person individually and you can recognize them, but if you don’t have support in the tools, in the structures, you’re not going to get very far.
  13. Traditional community metrics leave a lot of people out. We value each member participating in the ways that are most comfortable for them.
  14. Our focus isn’t to grow Virtual Coffee, it’s to support our members.