Okay, so now we're in the spoiler room. (laughs) Sorry, guys. So we have left the realist room, although it was gettin' kinda real there for a minute. And we are now in the spoiler room. So I want you to, maybe not now while you're in this lesson, but spend some time really thinking about whether this is a go or a no-go. It's totally okay if it's a no-go. It doesn't mean, it's not the end, it's just like I was saying about having that one kids' story idea. Don't be the lady that wrote a turtle story 20 years ago and has been trying to sell that turtle story ever since. Just write more stories! It's okay if it's a no-go. You've seen the SWAT, you've made a logical decision, and you should be totally okay with it if you have to call it a no-go. All you have to do is go back to the drawing board, maybe even early on from the same idea, we talked about different paths and different journeys that the idea could go on. You should have three or four options anyway, all right? So if this parti...
cular idea is presenting, you know, the kind of challenges that say it's not worth proceeding, then you should heed that, that's important. It's healthy to put yourself under pressure. It's healthy to make hard decisions about this kind of stuff, knowing that you seriously considered not doing it is what's gonna give you the strength when you do decide it is worth it, when you're like, "I don't care "about that list of threats, "I don't care, I know that the, "I only have one strength listed "in my strengths category, but it is the kind "of strength that is gonna get me "through all of this "and, you know, I am gonna start this spoken word program." You know, I'm just plucky enough to do it, right? What have you got to lose? So if that is your decision, then just own it, and that's fine. I'm not suggesting this is about quantity. It is about quality. Just remember that everything ends, right? This idea, you do need to think about the lifespan of the idea. And like I said, I would hope that you are aiming for this idea to outlive you, but this may not be that kind of idea. Again, I have to be really general, 'cause I don't know what all of your ideas are. Just go confidently into that third room, the spoiler room, and try and shoot as many holes in this as possible. Almost try to destroy this idea so that you can really make a logical and conclusive decision that you're going for it. You've been in the dreamer room, you've been in the realist room, you survived the spoiler room, and so you're gonna do it. That's right. Goethe, I think that's how it's pronounced, forgive me, said, "In the realm of ideas, "everything depends on enthusiasm. "In the real world, all rests on perseverance." There are so many of these quotes, you guys, that I could've brought in. I mean, they talk about "It's all perspiration," you know? And it's, really it's the idea you have now that is the best idea. It's not, again, it's again not about the merit of the idea, it is about how willing you are to go out there and sell it and find sponsors. So, what we're gonna do is we are gonna talk about the SMART plan. Have you heard of the SMART plan? So it's S-M-A-R-T. So it is S for specific, I don't have a slide for this, so you're just gonna have to listen to me. It's M for measurable, you can measure if this thing is succeeding or not. I don't necessarily agree with that. This isn't my idea, this whole SMART plan. This is just like one of those wonderful business-y things that's just out there in the world. But everything isn't measurable. I will tell you right now, I can't really measure the success of the Black Cat Alley and what's come from it. I mean, I can tell anecdotal stories about how there are new businesses being attracted to the area. I have personally just shown up there before and found a tour group going through that I didn't even know held tours there, and that's incredibly powerful for me that that happens. You know, so I do see successes, but if I were truly having to go to a hardcore investor type and say, "We would like a million dollars "for this project because tours happen there," you know, that's not that measurable. So you have to know what kind of project yours is. It may have a certain amount of measurable, you know, goals and certain way of measuring that where you can say, "Yes, we had success, "we sold this many units in year one, "we believe we can sell this many units "and here's why" and you actually have financial plans. Everything's not super measurable, all right? Don't let that get you down, but try, all right? Try and know that you're gonna be able to look back on this and at least see that things are happening. Agreement, that's the A in SMART. So it's specific, it's measurable, you have agreement. In other words, you have people who are into it. You have your community, your platform, and you already have, I almost might even say A is also audience. You have an audience for this. People agree that it's gonna work. R is realistic. Hmm, don't always agree with that one either. I don't think your idea needs to be realistic, but that's because I'm kind of a dreamer. I think your idea can be totes crazy. (laughs) And I would be right there for you because the best ideas kind of are. So maybe it's not realistic, but that's what the business book says. R is for realistic. But do you believe it's possible? Okay, do you at least see steps that are gonna get you to the easier parts of this wild and crazy plan that is way out there? So if your wild and crazy plan, like, if I really wanted to get Shepard Fairey to come into my alley, that was my penultimate goal, and that actually would be cool, so Shepard, if you're watching, please. You know, maybe that's not possible, maybe it's not even what I really want, maybe that's just me being a fangirl, I don't know. But when I was just looking at a dirty alley, saying, "Oh, I want Shepard Fairey to paint here," that wouldn't even make sense. I needed to know that the intermediate steps were possible. Could I get students to paint there? Could we probably have a clean-up program? Yeah, that's possible. Could we get the building owner to agree to put lights back there so that it's safer for residents in the neighborhood? Yeah, that's possible. So that's what I mean by realistic, okay? Don't take your whole dream and say, "I have to do something boring "and mainstream and provable and measurable." That doesn't have to be realistic. But you're being realistic about a journey and about where you think you can get on the journey. And then the T is time-specific. You have a timeline. I wanna make sure that in your SMART plan, your T is for time. You know, you have some kind of definition for achieving that kind of time lapse, you know? You know kind of what this is gonna look like next year. You kind of have a vision for what it's gonna look like the following year, and if you get to next year and you didn't achieve that, then you can sit down and say why. Like, our goal for this year was bigger than this and we didn't get there, so time is super important.