User groups are the heartbeat of community. They bring people together in real life and create space to connect, learn and grow with like-minded professionals. The IBM Middleware User Community has a robust network of nearly 200 user groups around the world. But none of these groups are possible without the leadership and dedication from IBM customers like you.
So what is a user group and what does it take to be a leader?
What is a User Group?
A group of customers, IBMers, and IBM business partners who actively work with IBM Solutions and are interested in learning and sharing information about their solutions with other members.
Advantages of Leading a User Group
- Networking with IBM customers, business partners, and IBMers
- Forum to exchange information, experiences, and best practices
- Ability to influence IBM Solutions services and support strategies
- Increased access to product knowledge and experience
- Increased opportunities to hear IBM Solution presentations on products, support, and services
- Connect virtually with user groups worldwide
- IBM User Group website with access to presentations, whitepapers, blogs, and online forums designed to facilitate the exchange of ideas, information, experiences
User Group Structure
User groups are independently owned and run by IBM customers. Leadership consists of a User Group Leader (an IBM customer or business partner) and a User Group Liaison (an IBMer). While there is no limit to how many leaders and liaisons run each group, each user group ideally has at least one leader and one liaison. User groups are location-based.
User Group Leader
A User Group leader is an IBM customer with the desire to meet others in their local area to connect, learn, network and grow as a professional. They volunteer their time to bring professionals of all backgrounds and experience levels together around ideas, opinions and areas of interest. Roles include:
- Spend approximately 5-10 hours/month tending to your user group
- Plan, promote, and host a minimum of two user group meetings every year
- Provide fresh content and updates to your user group on a weekly basis through the user group’s blog and discussion forums
- Communicate with user group at least once per month to engage group members
- Attend quarterly User Group Leader & Liaison calls for important updates and presentations
User Group Liaison
A User Group Liaison is an IBM employee who supports a User Group Leader in managing a user group. Roles include but are not limited to:
- Liaison to IBM for User Group Leaders and members
- Assist in planning user group meetings
- May help find meeting space, sponsors, or speakers
- Share new products, updates and services from IBM with User Group members
- Help to create awareness about the User Group and its activities among local IBMers
- May provide fresh content and updates to members through the User Group’s blog and discussion forums
- May attend quarterly User Group Leader & Liaison calls for important updates and
I’m in, how do I get started?
Getting started just takes one step!
- Fill out the User Group Leader/Liaison interest form. Upon filling out the form, the User Group Manager will be notified. The manager will determine if there is already an existing user group covering the topic of interest, or if a new group can be created.