Embarking on the journey of community building with the P=ENTS methodology necessitates a clear vision of the resources required. These resources are not just the tangible elements but also the intangibles that give a community its unique essence and direction.
At the core of this process, we've delineated four crucial pillars that underpin successful community construction:
The heart and soul of your community. These are the leaders, contributors and champions who breathe life into your vision.
It's more than just hours and days; it's about strategising, synchronising and ensuring that every moment invested yields stability, plus maximum engagement and growth.
Beyond mere financing, this is about judicious allocation to ensure the sustainability, growth and outreach of your community.
In the digital era, this predominantly involves the tools and platforms that facilitate communication, collaboration and creativity.
With these foundational pillars in mind, let's delve deeper into each one, understanding their significance and the considerations to bear in mind for a thriving online community.
When building your community, the people you entrust with key responsibilities can spell the difference between dynamic engagement and stagnation. Reputational risk is also on the line. That's why you must choose very carefully and only when the community member has proven themselves to be reliable, trustworthy and fully deserving of the responsibility. You will sometimes need to say no, which is difficult but will spare you from more serious problems over the long term.
With the P=ENTS methodology, self-replication and finding the optimum balance between centralisation and decentralisation act as the backbone. These approaches ensure stability, widespread participation and growth. Here is an overview of the roles we use. You can read more detail here:
Stage 1: Scholarship - Acquiring theoretical knowledge and skills related to the P=ENTS methodology, preparing for real-world application.
Stage 2: Mission - Applying the P=ENTS methodology in a real-world community context, gaining practical experience.
Stage 3: Engagement - Deepening integration into the P=ENTS community, receiving mentorship and actively participating.
Stage 4: Reflection - Engaging in self-reflection, learning from mistakes and contributing to the improvement of the P=ENTS methodology.
Stage 5: Alliance - Formally aligning with the P=ENTS methodology, collaborating with other community builders and creating lasting impact.
Stage 6: Service - Focusing on mentoring and teaching others, fostering new leaders and preparing for the next generation.
Stage 7: Anointment - Representing the pinnacle of selflessness and achievement, self-replicating and passing on knowledge and power to the next generation.
These are community members who are progressing through the P=ENTS learning curve. Their journey has been twofold:
This encompasses the foundational understanding of P=ENTS, its nuances, objectives and potential pitfalls. This learning process begins in the Scholarship stage. Resources like online courses, webinars and e-books, preferably hosted either here or on platforms such as Coursera or Udemy can assist in this phase.
Theory is nothing without practice. Here, ENTS actively embed the methodology into the communities we work with, learning from real-time feedback and experiences. After we attain the Mission stage, we begin reporting back on our experiences to further refine the P=ENTS methodology. Our Anointers are the masters of the practical implementation of P=ENTS.
We advising sourcing ENTs (or whichever term you use to represent this function) from within your community. In this way, you can harness existing enthusiasm, ensure cultural compatibility and provide avenues for community members to ascend your community hierarchy, which we refer to as stages.
Giving this responsibility to your existing community encourages a sense of meaning to augment the passion they already feel for your idea. It also improves commmunity stability, efficiency and the speed of growth.
TENs are the experts that prop up a community's integrity and direction and automatically enter the P=ENTS hierarchy in the Alliance stage:
Deep Dive into P=ENTS Tenets
Their mastery over one or more sets of tenets (Education, Narrative, Transparency and/or Structure) equips them to shape initiatives and steer dialogues. To aid this expertise, resources such as expert-led workshops, certification programs, or principle-specific task groups can be invaluable.
Subject Matter Expertise
Beyond the P=ENTS methodology, TENs also bring to the table advanced knowledge relevant to the community's thematic focus. This could be facilitated through collaboration tools like Notion or Trello, where knowledge bases can be structured and continually refined.
Although TENs are often from within the community, occasionally engaging external experts can infuse fresh perspectives, foster external collaborations and enhance the community's stature in the broader ecosystem.
After theoretical training, NETs also usually enter the P=ENTS hierarchy at the Alliance stage and serve as the community's expansion strategy:
Evangelism and Advocacy
NETs raise awareness of the P=ENTS methodology through word of mouth and platforms like Medium, LinkedIn, Substack and other social media platforms or niche forums related to the community's focus. They explain the P=ENTS methodology's use cases and attracting interest.
These usually take the form of content creation, using tools like GitHub (for tech communities), Canva or Figma (for content-focused ones) or even platforms like Teachable (for knowledge sharing).
Whether they originate from within the community or are talented networkers from outside, NETs play a crucial role in outreach, assuring the community's continual growth and more opportunities for the practical implementation and refinement of the P=ENTS methodology. Incorporating the P=ENTS roles isn't just about function; it's about fostering an ethos.
Any community builders reading here can either adopt these roles as-is or modify them, aligning with their unique identities. At its core, P=ENTS underscores empowerment, participation and genuine ownership. Feel free to adapt the names, but keep these principles at heart.
An ENT is someone who has undergone P=ENTS training, is accredited and has practical experience of implementing P=ENTS in a community to Stage 5. Would you like to become an ENT? Click here to book a meeting to discuss our roles.
A NET is someone who finds communities in need of the P=ENTS methodology. A NET receives a commission of 5% of the contract value for every referral. Would you like to become a NET? Click here to book a meeting to discuss our roles.
Investing time in community building is a testament to its intrinsic value and envisioned longevity.
Time, the only irreplaceable resource, isn't merely about duration but reflects dedication, foresight and strategic intent.
Efficient time management, fostered by automation, can be the key to unlocking the true potential of your community.
Embracing tools for note-taking, transcription and meeting assistants not only streamlines communication but ensures that every interaction is productive.
Automated schedulers and time-blocking techniques keep agendas tight. Task management and prioritisation tools ensure every moment is spent wisely.
Virtual assistants, adept at email inbox management and lead management, become the backbone of operations, giving the necessary productivity boost.
The evolution of AI-driven time management and tracking tools has revolutionised how community leaders approach their work.
Here is a comprehensive and regularly updated list of the AI-based time management apps that are essential for every community builder's toolkit.
Airgram: A platform for building real-time messaging apps efficiently.
Clara: A virtual assistant that manages and schedules your meetings seamlessly.
Clockwise: An intelligent calendar tool that optimises your work schedule for deep work and collaboration.
EmailTree: Employs AI to automate email responses and enhance customer communication.
Filestage: A content platform, which focuses on speedy feedback and approval.
Fireflies: An AI tool that transcribes meetings, ensuring you capture every detail discussed.
Krisp: An application that silences background noises in any communication app, enhancing call clarity.
Kronologic: Automates meeting scheduling by dynamically booking meetings based on preferences.
Mem: A fast, easy-to-use tool for capturing and recalling your thoughts and ideas.
Motion: A browser extension aimed at boosting productivity by reducing online distractions.
My Hours: A simple time tracking tool suitable for both teams and freelancers to monitor work hours.
Notion AI: An AI-powered feature within Notion, bringing smart capabilities to your notes and tasks.
Reclaim: Balances your work calendar with personal time, ensuring you prioritise self-care.
SaneBox: Uses AI to filter and organise emails, decluttering your inbox.
Superhuman: An ultra-fast email client designed to streamline and optimise your email experience.
Time Doctor: A time tracking and productivity monitoring software ideal for remote teams.
Timely: An automatic time tracking tool that provides insights into how you spend your hours.
Trevor: An analytics tool that turns your database into actionable insights and reports.
Wrike: A versatile project management platform suitable for teams of any size.
Zapier: Connects different apps together, automating workflows and tasks across numerous platforms.
Budgeting is a testament to the community's vision, ensuring sustainability and driving growth. It's not merely about spending, but ensuring each expenditure brings value to the community:
Here are some of the best free resources for learning about and implementing budgeting:
Mint: Online budgeting and money management tool with free app. Can link accounts, track spending, set budgets and more.
EveryDollar: Budgeting app from Dave Ramsey. Simple interface, can do zero-based budgeting.
YNAB (You Need a Budget): Award winning budgeting method. Free for a 34-day trial period.
Tiller: Connects Excel spreadsheets to bank accounts to auto-import transactions for budgeting.
The Balance - Personal budgeting tutorials, worksheets, examples for beginners.
NerdWallet - Budget calculator with household expense tracker tools.
Money Under 30 - Detailed budgeting guide for all stages of life.
The Simple Dollar - Tips and guides on budgeting strategies that work.
Khan Academy - Series of videos explaining concepts of budgeting.
Money Matters Made Simple - YouTube channel exploring budgeting and saving strategies.
More useful resources
Buddy: A user-friendly app designed for tracking expenses and budgeting personal finances.
Digit: An intelligent tool that analyzes your spending and automatically saves the right amount for you.
Empower (Formerly Personal Capital): A comprehensive financial app that combines money tracking with personalised financial advice.
EveryDollar: A budgeting tool focused on the zero-based budget system, helping users allocate every dollar they earn.
Freshbooks: an app that helps you manage your finances, from invoicing and tracking expenses to running payroll.
Goodbudget: An envelope budgeting method-based app, allowing users to plan and track their spending.
Honeydue: A couples-focused finance app designed to help partners manage shared expenses and financial goals.
Mint: A popular, all-in-one personal finance app that offers expense tracking, bill payments and credit score insights.
Mobills: A financial management tool that presents your financial life through clear graphs and charts.
Monarch Money: An intuitive platform that helps users set budgets, track spending and achieve financial goals.
Money Lion: Combines banking, lending and investing into one platform for a comprehensive financial overview.
PocketGuard: A budgeting app that highlights recurring expenses and offers insights into daily spendable amounts.
Prism: A bill management tool that gathers all your bills in one place, ensuring you never miss a payment.
QuickBooks: Offering a full view of your finances, one of the best budget software options out there.
Rocket Money: An app focusing on helping users manage daily transactions and offering financial insights.
Simplifi: A financial management platform that offers insights, expense tracking and budgeting tools.
Simplifi by Quicken: A streamlined version of Quicken, focusing on easy budgeting and financial tracking.
Spendee: A visually appealing app that offers insights into your financial habits with clear graphics and tools.
Wally: A personal finance app that gives users a 360-degree view of their finances.
Wave: Offering budgeting, income and expense tracking and double-entry accounting - good for small businesses with 10 or fewer employees.
You Need a Budget (YNAB): A popular budgeting tool that follows the principle of giving every dollar a job.
In the digital realm, the materials you'll need are mostly software and tools. The right selection can enhance communication, collaboration and creativity. Let's start with where your community should live.
Community Building Platforms
Every community needs somewhere to hang out. Here are some of the most popular community platforms right now.
Circle: A modern community platform tailored for creators, allowing streamlined content delivery and member engagement in a branded space.
Disciple: A platform to create and manage branded community apps, promoting deep engagement and monetisation options.
Discord: Initially popular with gamers, this platform offers voice, video and text communication, evolving to serve various communities and collaboration needs.
Discourse: An open-source platform designed for building communities with discussion forums, offering modern forum functionality.
Facebook Groups: A feature within Facebook allowing users to create, join and interact within community-focused groups.
Guild: A privacy-focused messaging app tailored for professional groups, networks and communities.
Hivebrite: A comprehensive community management and engagement platform, customisable to match various industry needs.
MeltingSpot: A platform that focuses on creating virtual networking spaces, replicating real-life professional events and meetups online.
Mighty Networks: Allows creators to build niche communities, offer courses and subscription content all in one place.
Podia: Create a community at no cost. Establish a complimentary community, set a price for entry and centralise access to your content for your members.
Slack: Primarily a business communication tool, its channels and direct messaging can be harnessed to build and engage small to medium-sized communities.
Telegram: A cloud-based messaging app with a focus on speed and security, it has channels and groups that are used for building and broadcasting to large audiences. At its best when set to private and invite only.
Zapnito: A platform built for expert networks, allowing brands to showcase their expertise and build trusted communities.
Project Management and Collaboration
AI Agent: Allows you to design your own agents: select a name, set an objective and choose the OpenAI model it should use for processing.
Aomni: Boosts your outbound pipeline, independently researching online to suggest new ICPs and devises detailed plans for each prospect.
Asana: A task and project management tool designed to help teams organise, track and manage their work.
Bit.ai: An interactive document collaboration platform that brings all information into one space for more effective teamwork.
Bloomfire: A knowledge sharing platform that centralises company information and makes it easily accessible to teams.
Chanty: A team chat tool aimed at improving communication and collaboration with built-in task management.
Confluence: A remote-friendly collaborative workspace from Atlassian that connects people to the content and co-workers they need to get work done.
Google Workspace: Google's suite of cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools, including Google Drive, Docs, Sheets and Slides.
Jive: An interactive intranet platform designed to foster collaboration, communication and knowledge-sharing within companies.
Krisp.ai: An AI-powered noise-canceling tool that mutes background noise in any communication application.
MediaFire: A cloud storage service that allows users to store and share photos, videos, documents and more.
Miro: An online collaborative whiteboarding platform to help teams work more effectively, from brainstorming with digital sticky notes to planning and analysis.
Monday.com: A work operating system that powers teams to run projects and workflows with confidence.
ProofHub: A project planning software with tools that help teams discuss, work and achieve together.
StoryPrompt: A platform where you can send and collect personal videos, capturing stories, testimonials and updates by simply sharing a link.
Troop Messenger: A user-friendly team messaging app designed to improve team communication and collaboration.
WebinarNinja: A complete solution for hosting webinars.
Written Content Creation
AgentGPT: A conversational AI model for generating human-like text.
AnswerThePublic: Visualises search questions and suggested autocomplete searches in a graphical format.
Anyword: AI-driven copywriting tool to enhance marketing content.
Bard: An AI-driven tool for generating narratives or stories.
ChatGPT: A model for generating conversational AI interactions.
Claude 2: A next-generation AI assistant for your tasks.
Designrr: A tool for transforming web content into eBooks or reports.
genei: An AI tool designed for quicker reading and summarisation of articles.
Google Trends: A tool that shows how often a term is searched for on Google over time.
genei: An AI tool designed for quicker reading and summarisation of articles.
Grammarly: An online grammar checking, spell checking and plagiarism detection platform.
Hemingway App: A writing tool that highlights complex sentences and errors.
HyperWrite: A platform for generating AI-based writing.
Scribie: A transcription service for converting audio/video to text.
Thinkific: A platform for creating and delivering online courses.
Wordtune: An AI-powered writing companion to rewrite, refine and enhance sentences.
Visual Content Creation
Adobe Creative Suite: A comprehensive set of professional tools for graphic design, video editing and web development.
Animoto: A cloud-based video creation service that produces video slideshows.
Beautiful.ai: A design tool focused on making visually appealing presentations.
Canva: A graphic design platform used to create visuals, videos and infographics.
Ceros: An interactive content creation platform for marketers and designers.
Decktopus: A tool for simplifying presentation creation.
Instant Video Creator: A tool for quickly producing videos.
Jasper: AI content generator for teams
Midjourney: An art creation app powered by AI, producing distinctive artwork with just a few clicks.
Mockup Photos: A platform for high-quality device mockups.
Riddle: A platform for creating quizzes and interactive content.
Stable Diffusion: An advanced text-to-image model, enabling users to generate photo-realistic art from textual input online for free.
TailWind: A tool for managing Pinterest and Instagram marketing.
Multimedia Content Creation
Alitu: An automated podcast production tool that simplifies editing and publishing.
Audacity: An open-source, cross-platform audio editing software.
BeyondWords: An advanced language generation platform with text-to-speech publishing.
Buzzsprout: A podcast hosting platform to publish, promote and track podcasts.
DALL·E 2: An AI that generates images based on textual descriptions.
Descript: An audio/video editing software that lets you edit media by editing text.
Giphy: A platform to search and share short looped videos or animated GIFs.
StreamYard: A live streaming studio in your browser.
With these great resources, communities can better integrate the P=ENTS methodology, creating dynamic, engaged and growth-oriented virtual spaces for communities to grow.
P=ENTS is about adaptability. Always shape the resources you have available to fit your community’s distinct needs.