If you are interested in joining the community of contributors who are working together to make SourceCred a reality, then this page will help you find your way. If instead you’re looking for information about using SourceCred for your own community or project, check out our How To Set Up SourceCred guide.
This document follows the journey from being a newcomer to a full-fledged contributor in the SourceCred community, sharing relevant resources along the way to help you get there. No phase of getting involved in SourceCred is any better or worse than another; this is your experience, and we encourage you to engage with it at a level and pace that fits you.
General starting tips
SourceCred is still young, and we don’t have a fully fleshed out onboarding process yet. That means you’ll do best if are willing to dive in, ask questions, explore resources, and otherwise utilize self-directed learning. This doesn’t mean we’re throwing you to the sharks in a “sink or swim” fashion. We are a highly engaged community, so your best chance at getting up to speed with what’s going on and how to help is to be active on our Discord and get connected to other contributors. Come to calls, talk to contributors with more context, ask questions, and offer your help. We’ll welcome you with open arms!
Note that just as everyone is different, everyone’s journey through SourceCred will be different. Make it the experience you want to have. Go at the pace that helps you realize your goals and builds trust in both directions. Below you'll find helpful suggestions or "quests" for each phase, but none of these are required or need to be done in a specific order. Happy exploring!
Phase 1: Getting Plugged In
Get connected through the platforms, tools, and social norms we use to communicate and coordinate with each other. In this phase, the focus is on getting you plugged into the different platforms, resources, and expectations of our community. This will give you a good foundation for the exploration you’ll do if you decide to contribute.
If you decide that you don’t want to move beyond this phase, that’s okay! You'll be plugged in and can keep your finger on the pulse of this very fascinating project.
Best Newcomer Resources
We provide a list of resources for newcomers: documentation and tools it will be best to familiarize yourself with as you dip your toes into the community. Don’t feel like you need to read through everything before you’re allowed to start interacting with the community or asking questions. Though by the time you truly start trying to contribute, you should be familiar with these basic concepts and resources.
Great Phase 1 Quests
- Look through the Best Newcomer Resources list above, and explore any other [Documentation](link to an "All Docs Index" webpage) that looks interesting to you.
- Join the relevant platforms.
- Read through the Discord "#start-here" channel.
- Introduce yourself in the Discord "#introductions" channel. Tell us a little about who you are, why you're here, what kinds of skills you'd like to be using, and the names/pronouns you prefer to use in our community.
- If someone you know introduced you to the community, have a 1:1 "tour" with them as your Guide.
- Attend a Community Call so you can introduce yourself, get to know some of the other contributors, and ask questions about what still confuses or intrigues you about SourceCred. This call is very newcomer and basic-question friendly.
- Ask some questions, give some feedback, or share some ideas in the Discord channels. The asynchronous community space that Discord offers can be very helpful and fun to engage with as you get to know this project.
Phase 2: Experimentation, Exploration, & Play
Whenever you feel like you have a basic sense of what SourceCred is and know you want to keep exploring it, that's when you could shift to Phase 2. You have a sense for the community, and other contributors have a sense of you. You probably already even have some cred! Now it's time to explore what it could look like to start contributing your skills to SourceCred.
In this phase, we encourage you to use your new understanding of the project and community to scope out where the intersection between your skills and our needs are. Once you have an idea of where/how you'd like to lend a hand, get connected to the other contributors who are working on those initiatives and/or start attending calls/meetings related to your interests. Give different things a try, experiment with applying your skills and knowledge to SourceCred, and feel out whether it's a good fit. Give contributing a try in multiple areas and see if something clicks for you. This is a time to play, and ask yourself what kind of skills you want to be expanding on in your life.
If you find yourself happy in this phase of lighter or experimental contribution, you may be an on-again-off-again contributor who enjoys poking in their head to help from time to time. We welcome you and your seed-on-the-wind style!
Great Phase 2 Quests
- Start attending [Jams](our calls doc link) focused on topics you're interested in. Be a fly on the wall and/or share your ideas and skills. Anyone can come to a jam if they're interested in the topic.
- Look through the Initiatives Index Spreadsheet and identify some initiatives you could be interested in contributing to or at least learning more about.
- Reach out to a contributor already working on an initiative you'd like to help with or learn more about. Get the scoop on upcoming meetings or work sessions you could sit in on to gain context. Maybe ask a few basic questions about the initiative.
- If no current initiatives look right, try instead having a 1:1 with someone working in a branch of the project you're interested in. Getting some more context on the branch could help you get involved.
- Listen in on a [Contributor Call](our calls doc link) to get some context on the bigger picture and current goals of SourceCred.
- Attend a meeting or work session for an initiative you'd like to help out with. Gain context and evaluate if you'd like to start contributing. Just make sure not to derail the goals of the meeting.
Phase 3: True Contributor
At this point, you've narrowed down your interests and are familiar with the parts of the project you'd like to be a part of. You've done a bit of contributing and have a feel for how ideas flow and things get done in our community. Maybe you've found some people you enjoy working with or some challenges that really get your brain ticking, and you want to keep that ball rolling. If so then you may want to consider joining a team that's working on a specific initiative, or taking on a more complex solo contribution. Phase 3 is where you really start to get invested and involved in your part of the project, and consequently, where you start to see the bigger and more rent-supporting cred scores/grain payouts.
This is your chance to work with others in the community and develop more solid relationships to your fellow contributors. It's your opportunity to start flexing and growing your skills now that you have a solid foundation of understanding and context within the project. You may even keep in contact with another contributor who can help you continue to grow your chosen skills through the context of working on SourceCred.
If you decide you'd like to stick with phase 3 then you may be a frequent contributor who enjoys giving assistance where it's needed and regularly being around to help out, but with no need to rock the boat or take on bigger leadership roles. We love that you love being around and sharing your thoughts and contributions with us.
Great Phase 3 Quests
- Join a team of fellow contributors who are working on a specific initiative that you feel you could provide value to. This means attending any work sessions for the team/initiative you're able to, and potentially attending [Branch Meetings](link to our calls doc) if that feels relevant. At this point there should be enough mutual trust and understanding of skills/needs for joining a team to feel like a natural next step.
- Make bigger contributions to an initiative and/or help see an initiative through to completion.
- Suggest a new initiative you see the project needs. Whether you end up leading the initiative or not; talk to the leaders in your slice of SourceCred if you have an idea to see what they think, whether it's needed, and how it could be achieved. Suggesting new initiatives is not required or a right of passage by any means, make sure you're suggesting thought-through ideas that clearly fill a need in the project. Not just for the sake of making suggestions.
- Take on and finish a solo-initiative. Sometimes an initiative doesn't require a full team to be realized, if you enjoy working mostly on your own this could be a good route for you.
Phase 4: Core & Leadership
If you want to move beyond being a frequent contributor and take on more responsibility, then you might try moving into Phase 4. At this point in your journey, you should; have a deep understanding of at least your branch of SourceCred, be making consistent and valuable contributions to whatever you're working on, have plenty of big-picture context, have the trust of Leads and Contributors, and an understanding of SourceCred's overall goals plus the milestones we're pursuing to achieve them.
Moving into leadership can take many forms and is not for everyone. Here in SourceCred we understand that powerful skills in one field, does not necessarily mean one has the skills or desire to be a leader or coordinator of people.
If you are a high-frequency contributor who regularly brings a lot of indisputable value to the project as a whole, has gained the trust of the community, and has comprehensive context in the project; then you may find yourself considered a "Core" contributor. Being a Core contributor does not require you to be a leader, but it is a good place from which to become a leader if that is your intention.
Great Phase 4 Quests
- Champion an initiative. Find an initiative (or create one) that you know you understand well and requires the help of a person or two. Be the one who really guides the initiative from beginning to end, keeps track of its progress or changes, and orients the people you're working with so they don't lose sight of the overall goal.
- Lead a small team. Sometimes there are larger initiatives that require you to brake things down into smaller initiatives. Take ownership of a larger initiative and coordinate the smaller teams of contributors to work with you as they focus on different parts of the overall goal. The slightly larger team and diversity of focus will be a good stepping stone as you put your leadership chops to the test.
- Lead a Division within a Branch. If you've got great report and trust with both the contributors working in a branch and the lead running that branch, then you may make a good candidate for leading a division within a branch. This would require tracking, orienting, and supporting the teams and their champions who work within your division of influence. For example: becoming the leader of the Onboarding Division within the Community Cultivation Branch. You would guide and keep tabs on any effort related to Onboarding, and have regular check ins with your Branch Lead to make sure things are on track with the larger vision.
This doc is based on our Onboarding Philosophy, which you can read to gain even more context on this guide.
If you have have feedback, comments, questions, or suggestions for this doc; please let us know in the #feedback or #questions channels of our Discord!