Influence – An “Area 51” Proposal for Stack Exchange

One of my favorite online communities is Stack Exchange. They have a useful community process for creating new sub-communities, called Area 51.

I’ve been searching around for a good idea for a new community – not just for the sake of creating a new community, but because I feel in a (still somewhat vague) way that there are some topic areas where I have some expertise, but which are not currently incorporated into any of the current communities. One of these is bouncing around in my head right now with the working title of “Influencing Leaders” – the idea would be to share information about how to create change in the world by influencing the world’s leaders. Those leaders could be people in government, various community leaders, management of businesses, etc.

And an important part of the community focus would be on work done by individuals and small, informal groups – not really professional work, but sort of personal work. Based on personal goals.

Since the Stack Exchange communities are entirely question / answer based, and new proposals are formed by asking the general community to compile a list of example questions, I’m going to start trying to compile some of my own ideas here. If it starts to turn into something that seems good, I will plan to turn it into a formal proposal on Area 51. So, this published post will change, whenever I decide to add a new question.

Questions to follow… my working titles for the site are “Influencing Leaders” and “Network Influence.”

  • How can I tell whether I am working on the right issues?
  • How can I contact people at an “opaque” organization?
  • What are some of the reasons that organizations put up barriers to communication?
  • How can I tell when a person is becoming responsive?
  • What are some of the significant hurdles which it is important to get past?