Fast Company has an interesting article online about how to design and run online networks for senior executives.
At the Mississippi Hospital Association, we started offering online communities to our members about three years ago. Initially, I suspected that mainly senior executive types would be interested in joining the communities. I was wrong.
Our larger communities, by far, are areas that need information to stay up-to-date. The largest online community is compliance - those responsible for ensuring that hospitals are compliant with the myriad of regulations they face from entities as diverse as Medicare and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
It's interesting to experience it from the user end too. I have joined several online communities through the American Society of Association Executives. They have all the same goodies (and a few more than mine): message boards, directories with pictures, forums, document sharing. Yet I still don't go there much without a specific reason (book discussion) or an e-mail prompt.
What kind of online communities has your association created? What kind of success have you had? Comment below or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to tell your story here.