First, by way of reminder:
1. a firm decision to do or not to do something.
"she kept her resolution not to see Anne any more"
synonyms: intention, resolve, decision, intent, aim, plan
2. the action of solving a problem, dispute, or contentious matter.
“a satisfactory resolution of the problem”
synonyms: solution to, answer to, end to, ending to, settlement of, conclusion to
Second, two simple but powerful questions to fuel your New Year's resolution:
- What do you want to do?
- What is your definition of done?
While you're thinking of your answers, let me give credit where credit is due...
Seth Weinberger is a friend, former boss and mentor who recently put Hackstudio in Evanston, IL on my radar. Hackstudio is a place where kids come together with their supportive peers for two hours every week to learn how to succeed by being who they are. It’s built around a program where kids define their own projects from scratch, work to get them done and learn who they are by confronting the obstacles they encounter along the way.
I had the pleasure of visiting Hackstudio last week and comparing notes with the co-founders, Mike Meiners and Randy Blaugh. Upon reflection, I’m not too proud to admit that they are doing WonderLab better than WonderLab has been doing WonderLab!
Why do I say that? The short answer is that they've been getting better traction. The longer answer is that we've talked to a lot of past, present and potential WonderLab Families since my July blogpost in the hopes of developing a more scalable, sustainable model. Many of the ideas that emerged (peer teams instead of 1:1 Mentor Guide sessions, a quarterly commitment vs. monthly memberships, more open space, clearer messaging and marketing) are pillars of the Hackstudio model.
In fact, the importance of better marketing brings us back to our friend Seth Weinberger…
It was nearly two years ago to this day that we were about to launch WonderLab and I was getting Seth’s feedback. After he took it all in he wisely concluded:
“Temp, I don’t know whether WonderLab is going to succeed. I hope it does, but it’s always difficult to start a new product or service that people don’t know they need yet. This will be won or lost on good marketing.”
A big part of the beauty of Hackstudio’s programmatic approach is in its simplicity, and in turn, its clear and compelling messaging. It’s about figuring out what you want to do, defining done, and then getting to done. It provides “a structured, supportive environment that builds one of life’s most important skills: the ability to achieve one’s goals” — something that a rapidly growing number of people know they need now more than ever in an increasingly complex and dynamic world.
So my New Year’s resolution is to incorporate this powerful simplicity into WonderLab’s model. Our definition of done is to one day launch a new and improved, scalable and sustainable WonderLab. Our supportive peers are not only our new friends at Hackstudio, but also old friends here in Austin at the numberlab, The Spark, Acton Academy, Khabele + Strong Incubator, and other like-minded organizations. Needless to say, we'll keep you posted!
So what do you want to do in 2016 -- and what is your definition of done?
As for supportive peers, you know where to find us!