Community Building vs Growing Your Ego

Photos of Raul Colon Web Developer Puerto Rico

Meeting people with Huge Ego’s online is pretty common. What is confusing about some of them is that a few think they are actually building a community when in reality they are working on, is growing their Ego.

I see how many individuals create a world around to benefit themselves. Every effort I try to run I try to benefit those around me. I think of my family, friends, and community first. Every time I will act on something my nature makes me think of how it will benefit those around me first.

My overall online approach in building my community

  • Two way communication ensures healthy growth of your community. By understanding what your community is expecting from you. When everyone has a clear understanding on what they should expect from you there is less probability of miscommunication on both sides. Always cultivate two way channels they are great for learning and finding solutions.
  • Be human. Many people become act like robots online with repetitive behavior that might not inspire any interest . Respond in a way without a rigid protocol (there are always exceptions. Don’t forget to have fun when interacting with your community.
  • Be Helpful without expecting anything in return. I have had the opportunity to create great relationships by just being helpful. When you are truly helpful without expecting anything in return you build trust.
  • Be Responsive if someone took the time to reach out to you take the time to respond in a genuine way.
  • Always be Accesible make sure people can get a hold of you either via twitter, facebook, blog, or your telephone. Make sure you make time for the people that are important. If it is a corporate or personal channel it helps that everyone know the best way to reach you.
  • Identifying people with common interests and reaching out to them will help you in keeping the conversation going. Common interest amongst does that interact also helps in growing your community organically and keeping context in everything that is shared.
  • Tying your online and offline communities. On many occasions I see people keeping separate communities. I see a lot of value in tying both and making them one.

The Confused Individuals Who Are Only Growing  Their EGO

  • Self-promotion is the biggest flag of people trying to focus on their Ego instead of building relationships. Examples of self-promotion:
    • Re-tweeting when people give you a compliment.
    • Always saying how great you are.
    • If someone they collaborate with has accomplished something they try to grab all or at least most of the credit.
  • Broadcasting does not open up conversation it only launches information. Other traditional channels broadcast there messages and don’t have a channel to receive feedback. If most of the time you are broadcasting your message this can be detrimental to your efforts to build a solid community. Constant broadcasting can be used to self promote and force a message on a group or individual. Forcing a message and having influence are two different things.
  • Being destructive when they don’t get what they want. Some individuals decide to take negative actions when the outcome did not play out to their favor. I have seen how individuals who call themselves relationships experts have created toxic campaigns against those that simply un-followed them on twitter, un-friended them on facebook, or just did not agree with them.
  • Critizicing everyone instead of creating. Some people find it easier to criticize everyone instead of focusing on creating and building upon what they know or what their community is expecting from them. Too much talking and not much action can clearly put yo on track towards swelling your head and acquiring a bigger ego.

Any recommendations on how to build a community in a healthy way?

It would be great if you could share your ideas on how to stay away from growing your Ego instead of building a community?


  1. Luz Chavez on March 4, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    Thanks for this informative and honest post. I’ve learned a lot about community-building from you and so many Latism folks. You lead by example. Thanks for keeping it real for us newbies! 🙂

    • Raul Colon on March 4, 2011 at 3:03 pm


      We are all newbies. Staying in the position of a newbie keeps our minds fresh to absorb everything that is shared in awesome communities like the Latism community.

      Does who think they already made it are the ones that run into issues.

      • Luz Chavez on March 4, 2011 at 4:32 pm

        So true and insightful Raul. I think that approach can apply to life in general. It reminds me of the quote, “A wise man knows he knows nothing”

  2. Anonymous on March 4, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    Raul what a great post….

    These are all mistakes most of us make as we grow our communities. I sometimes daily have to refrain from sharing some great stuff because it will come off as shameless self promotion. Listening to my followers feedback, I even separated the blog posts from my @urbanjibaro handle so that I can focus on conversation.

    Since I was in the hospital… I have been in listen mode and learning how I can build a better, stronger community… stay tuned for some of my learnings in future blog posts.

    • Raul Colon on March 4, 2011 at 3:02 pm


      You are always promoting those around you and have a good balance. I have interacted with you in many occasions and have been reading your tweets for a good time and have never seen you as a self promoter.

      I have seen lots of value in many things you share.

      Listening is key, in October I met someone at the Inbound Marketing Summit. A few weeks later she commented on how much info I shared via Facebook. I thought about it and decided to disconnect my twitter feed from facebook and linkedin.

      Thanks to her advice it worked to my benefit. She had the courage to let me know that it bothered her and my guess was it bother others (which never said anything to me).

  3. Yamelly Weida on March 4, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    On target! I am passing on your excellent article.

    There is a lack of sensitivity and ego out there; if we all take action and live by what we believe in we’ll soon see a greater human era. You are shaping the Social Network protocol. Such powerful tool, we need to learn how to use it –

    • Raul Colon on March 4, 2011 at 3:14 pm


      Thanks for the kind words. It is great to find people that see things similar to how I see them.

      I read a few weeks back a great post by @margieclayman tying how Having Good Social Media Presence was a great responsibility. She compared with Spiderman and how in the movie the Message “With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility”

  4. Prometeo on March 4, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    Being helpful, responsive and accessible. Those three characteristics really make a person worth following and listening to. This is one of the best articles I’ve read regarding interpersonal relationships. A must read.

    • Raul Colon on March 4, 2011 at 3:44 pm


      You are a good example on how by keeping us informed locally you are helpful. When I leave a comment on your post you are responsive, and always accessible.

      With great people like you I have learned a lot of what Community Building is!

  5. Marjorie Clayman on March 4, 2011 at 4:34 pm

    Great post, friend.

    You embody everything that you talk about here. You are kind, always accessible, and ready to help, and I know that as a member of your community, it’s always appreciated. The danger of writing posts like this is that if you don’t live up to what you’re writing, you can get into trouble.

    That’s not at all a worry for you 🙂

    • Raul Colon on March 5, 2011 at 3:58 am


      I appreciate your comments and I guess that going by your recommendation it might be a great idea to make sure you come back to it and meet up to others expectations.

      Thanks for the kind words you know I learn a lot from you and the rest of the people in our community.

  6. jesseluna on March 5, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    I think that a certain amount of self-promotion or “cause-promotion” is required as part of community building. If you don’t share your passion, cause, and interests, how can other people understand where you’re coming from and help you support your cause?

    However, if your “cause” is your ego then that’s where the problems arise.

    • Raul Colon on March 5, 2011 at 7:41 pm


      I think you put it in a very simple line .

      “If your “cause” is your ego then that’s where the problems arise”

      I think there is a difference when you genuinely share what you are doing than when your only purpose is to get people interested in what you are doing with no interest in what others are doing.