The Grassroot Garage is structured as an 8-week-long boot-camp style experience. We’ll walk you through our modules for creating and sharing your work step-by-step. Each week you’ll be given specific assignments and activities to complete and supported with additional resources. At the end of the 8 weeks, you’ll be in a position to launch your own movement, organization or thought leadership platform into the real world.
THE FIVE MODULES
You – The fundamental hurdle to creating something and sharing it with the world is you. It’s not “Can You?” Of course, you can. It’s “Will you?” So, to make sure that you do, this module asks you to expose your fears, embrace your pedigree, share your wounds, tell us the story of you, and come to see the tangled mess of your existence as the source of wonderment. It’ll also have you excavating your values and your purpose. Because, you’re going to need all of these thing to stay the course when your fears come to thwart your beginning (which they will).
Think – the big questions…you need to ask of yourself, others, customers, all of the pieces you need…what is the why of your project, what is the how, what is the what…what exactly are you trying to change from what to what. Who are your customers…
Your Impact – Making clear of your envisioned impact and role in the process of change… this part gets at your motivation, what you are looking for, what you get out of the project…all of those things influence the role you envision for yourself
Content – what is it that you want to create and have the world engage
Build – Step by step building process…tactical step-by-step approach to building out the infrastructure you need to get your content engaged with…platform… building infrastructure for dissemination, interaction with, building,,.scaffolding that will support and spread and share your content…
We will take an iterative approach. That is, we’ll work through each of the modules – answering questions, doing assignment and digging deep. It sounds linear but it’s not. Because, the questions, assignments and activities in later modules will inform your answers in earlier modules. So, you’ll find yourself going back, revising your original answers, and over time narrowing in on the “Why” of your work.
We believe that if you articulate your values, make clear your motivations for wanting change the world, honestly interrogate your desired role in the process of change and courageously explore your fear of creating and sharing something imperfect, then you can begin to shape the arc of social change.
Throughout the modules, you’ll be sharing your work with others, getting their feedback, reflecting and getting better. We call this holistic iterative process “The Loop”:
Share your Work -> Get Feedback -> Reflect -> Get Better
It’s holistic because you’re not just iterating one aspect of your project. You’re iterating all aspects of your project simultaneously. It’s through this looping process that you’ll find the weird of your work. And, in this world, weird wins. So, we’ll never ask you to commit to any of your answers to any of the questions in any of the modules. Life’s about living the questions not answering them. However, we will ask you to commit to the loop.
You’ve seen those nature clips. Some wild animal of some kind is being released back into its natural habitat after having spent who knows how long in the care of humans. The humans open the gate to the cage, step back and wait to see what happens. You’d expect the wild beast to make a run for it. But, it doesn’t. It hesitates, stays within the cage and walks along its inside edges. It may place a tentative paw outside into the dirt but then it quickly darts back inside the comfort of its confines. That’s us. You and me whenever we are trying to launch a new project. We’ve been domesticated. Conditioned to questioned our capability to change the world. Our fears keep us caged. Fear of our weird slipping out. Fear of our true freaky, funky-self being seen by others. In the life-cycle of every project there’s come a moment or two or three or more when we crave our cage. It’s gonna take all of us to help one another out.
There’s are a lot of creative people with big ideas for changing the world. Hell, we’re all creative. And, we can all change the world. But, there’s not a lot of people who begin. Their fears get the better of them. So, as your working your way through the modules, we’ll be giving you the occasional Halftime Speech – poems, pump up songs, art, quotes, tools, resources and more – to boost your immunity against our consumerist society that’s hell-bent on intoxicating us on a continuous intravenous drip of Cheetos, Fortnite, and cat videos that’s hanging in the back corner of our cage.
Each and every step along the way we’ll be bootstrapping, utilizing free services, piggybacking on pre-existing infrastructure, and looking for workarounds. Our work-with-what-you-have, keep-your-overhead-cost-low, hack-it ethos allows you to sustain your work with minimal funding. In turn, this gives you the space and time to zero in on your singular stance in the social good universe.
WHAT YOU WILL BE LEARNING
Here are some of the things you’ll be learning how to do:
- Zero in on your “Why”
- Embrace your pedigree
- Identify your values
- Know your role and place in the process of social change.
- Dissipate the paralyzing fear that attends the beginning of any new project
- Build a project that is yours – your voice, your values, your way
- Find the weird of your work
- Create your own base of power
- Excel under pressure.
- Fail, get back up, try again and humbly succeed.
Other skills you’ll develop:
- Saying “I don’t know”
- Saying “I need help”
- Identifying your Resistance (ht Steven Pressfield)
- Seeing abundance around you
- Become a Pro (ht Steven Pressfield)
Some of the things to help you along in your journey:
- Live video coaching sessions with your instructor (Shawn Humphrey)
- Questions to guide your thinking
- Live interaction with the peers in your cohort
- Support from mentors
- Discussion board for group learning
- Group Q&A calls with Shawn
- Live one-on-one calls with Shawn
By the time you finish the course, you will walk away with these tangibles:
- Brand identity (domain name, tagline, and more)
- Prototyped Website
- Content type with which to spread your idea
- Effective social media architecture
- Power network
- And more…
We’ll also give you access to the tools with which to reach, educate, and connect with your target audience.
WHAT YOU WILL NOT BE LEARNING
Just so we’re absolutely clear, you will not learn how to:
- Write a mission statement
- Secure non-profit status
- Raise money via grant funding
- Build a Board of Directors
- Blah, blah, blah
These things are important (well, some of them); but, you don’t need non-profit status, or a board, or a grant to get started. And, when was the last time that you read a mission statement that gave you goosebumps? Never, right. All of the bulleted-bullshit above (and more) are artefacts of an earlier age. Worse than that. Those things in that list can form a secret alliance with your fears to stomp out your beginning. Indeed, those in position of power may ask you where those things in that list are for your project because that’s what they have. It’s not their intention to slow you down, sow the seed of doubt and give you imposter syndrome. Hell, maybe it is. Who knows? But, right now, at this stage in the life-cycle of your project, those things in that list are a distraction. Beginnings need to begin. So, we’ll be ignoring those things (and more).
OUR PROMISE: TRANSFIGURATION
We promise you that there’s gonna be some setbacks (most of them self-inflicted). Things will get dark. You will crave the comfort of your cage. You will want to retreat. Indeed, you may find yourself closing the shades, lying on the floor, and curling up in the fetal position. Our culture will tell you that you can find relief in material possessions and empty calories. It’s a lie. You cannot. The only path to forward is to rework your project. We promise that you’ll not be alone. We’ll be there with you as you enter into the arena, giving you the tools and support you need to take on your self-doubt. However, we cannot promise you that your project will succeed. It may fail.
That okay. I mean. It’s gonna hurt. But, while building your project, you’ll develop the techniques, tactics and strategies to go head-to-head with your fears. And, those things are more important than any concept or theory that we could give you. Because, in today’s world, “To Know” is overrated. A lot of us know. And, what we don’t know, we just ask google. “To Do” is entirely different. Not all of us can do. So, while we cannot guarantee your project’s success, we can guarantee you that you’ll be transfigured. Because, once you master the GG methodology, you’ll always have it and be able to reuse it again and again for any and all other projects.