Community Matters at WordCamp

WordCamp Coffee

Things are always better when you do it in a team. That is, at least, the lesson that I have learned again and again, and again. Sure, someone could code a full website by themselves from start to finish. I have a few projects right now that I am building by myself, at least for the time being. And yet, once you’re on a team then things seem to fall into place faster. Problems get solved faster. Or else, we as a team collectively realize that the problems weren’t actually problems to begin with.

While not said in those terms, that was the message brought home at Word Camp Orange County in June. WordCamp is  fun, clever evidence of why WordPress is so dominant on the web, why one out of every four websites in the world is running WordPress. While different WordCamps have different agendas, this one much to my surprised had very little actual programming. What, no PHP? Not object oriented functions? No wrestling with functions.php templates or require_once() code blocks?

In fact, most of the actual coding was on frontend tools like Sass, Grunt, Gulp, and whether to use a starter theme or a child theme for building your own theme from scratch. The rest of OC WordCamp was running the business and marketing side, something no business can do without: how to create and sell products online, building themes and plugins for sale, creating blog posts with the specific purpose of finding and bringing in new customers and clients.

The flip side of working on a team was the message that almost every OC WordCamp organizer and speaker drove home again and again: specialize. Then find a niche, then specialize on that and then niche it again. With that in mind no one is truly a “competitor” and everyone has a role to play and something new to learn. Next up? WordCamp Los Angeles this September.


David Kissinger consults with companies, trade associations, non-profits and entrepreneurs on external affairs, public relations, marketing, advocacy, IT strategy, web development and content.

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