Tom Ross | Building a Community-led business

How emotions and friendships are more important than metrics for your company.

Tom Ross explains how to think about a community from the business perspective but not from the metrics perspective. He hypnotizes and mesmerizes, Lera, Anna and I just sit tight and listen - a rare occasion.

Tom is not some dreamer with crazy ideas, he has actually built a business and several large communities. He brings explains in detail how amazing people are when you’re nice to them as a company.

It all feels a bit like a fairy tale 🧚 in Tom’s words - a perfect team and all things just happening around and good ideas just floating out there 💐 - once you as a business understand how to be nice and commit to it.

This episode is about fundamental basics and it may feel odd. Thing is, when we become entrepreneurs or big bosses, we focus on metrics but often forget what matters most.

Consider this episode a slap on your big-boss worldview 📈 and look for the secondary plotline where Tom explains what it took him to get him there.

Tom has a book that Anna and Lera like, he has a set of podcasts and a lot of good practical thoughts about communities. He uses simple language so it is easy to listen but not hear what he says.

The secondary plotline where Tom tells about his health issues and work-work balance resonates with me strongly. I understand that it would have been my path if not for Lera 😶

So who knows you better, your spouse or your co-founder?

We recorded a background story around Tom, Lera and me as an Ohayo podcast. It is available to premium subscribers.

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Community Design Program

Here’s something in small print for those who do read our newsletter 🧉 Lera and I have rolled out a draft of our community design program.

We’re polishing it, getting feedback, changing bits. But you can take a look and reply to this email if you want to have your say.


The Twitter thread with The Communities Show speakers for you to find who to follow. And these amazing people are our next guests:

  • Rick Turoczy, PIE

  • Tristan Pollock, CTO.ai, 500 Startups

  • Steph Smith, growth marketer, writer, and indie maker

  • Laís de Oliveira, On Deck

  • Erin Mikail Staples, Orbit

  • Tersha Willis, terrible.group

  • Pauline Narvas, Gitpod

  • Yuval Yarden, Venwise

  • Jenny Weigle, Chief Community Officer & Community Strategy Consultant

Thanks for supporting us!
We’re figuring partnerships and deals at the moment. Reply if you have something on your mind ✨

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The Community Show Hosts:

Community builders and digital content creators. Available for contract work.

  • Lera: artist, full-time gen z, queen 👑

  • Anna: founder, writer, engineer 👩🏻‍🔬

  • Olle: tech, relations, occasional cringe 🎥

  • Piotr: very likeable man of many talents 🧉