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January 23, 2024 42 mins

Ep. 149 Permissionless often refers to public blockchains that allow anyone to participate in validating and mining transactions as well as using the system to buy, sell and trade assets.

Wealth and Success are also permissionless. You don't need anyone's approval to go after your dream, start your company, or invest in your future. Since you don't need it, don't wait for it. Just GO and figure things out along the way. There is no playbook for you to specifically find your success in advance. The playbook for your life reveals itself only when you're in motion.

Follow Will Lucas on Instagram at @willlucas

Learn more at AfroTech.com https://instagram.com/afro.tech

See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

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Episode Transcript

Available transcripts are automatically generated. Complete accuracy is not guaranteed.
Speaker 1 (00:00):
We'll luke you here Black Tech, Green Money. So pleasing
to be with you here in this new season Black Tech,
Green Money. It's going to be a special one because
I get to talk about something that's near and dear
to my heart on this episode. And this episode is
really about asking permission, and you need to ask permission

(00:20):
and doing things without permission. So but before we get
into that, we're gonna talk about Afro tech News. Shout
out to all the Black inventors. Lanny Smooth becomes the
second person from Disney since Walt Disney himself to get
inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. He joined
the twenty twenty four class of recognized Inventors. Smooth who

(00:42):
was making history as the first Disney imagineer to receive
the honor. He's also the second person at Walt Disney
Company since Walt Disney to earn the recognition. His forty
five year career, he's been a theatrical technology creator, inventor,
electrical engineer, scientists, and researcher. He's a mass the collection

(01:04):
of over one hundred patents, seventy four of them created
during his twenty five year stint at all Disney Company
and is star shined long before he joined Disney. Graduated
with a bachelor's and master's degrees in electrical engineering from
Columbia University, developed multiple innovations such as video on demand technology,

(01:28):
video conferencing technologies, and specialized in television for remote locations,
just to name a few. He's been integral in creating
some of the most technically advanced special effects at Disney
theme parks and experiences, and if you've been some of these.
Examples of his special effect technologies include the Seance Room

(01:52):
at Disneyland's Haunted Mansion. He worked on the Madame Leotas
float there that I've not been there. Well, I've been there,
but I've not seen this particular thing. But Madam Leota's
floating in the Seience Room at Disney's Disneyland's Haunted Mansion,
he worked on that. Disney Live Entertainment's Extendable Lightsaber, he

(02:16):
worked on that. The Magic Playfloor interactive game experience on
Disney's Cruise Line, he worked on that. And the Fortress
Explorations adventure at Tokyo Disney c. He worked on that,
and he said in a statement as a lifelong as
a lifelong inventor. Let me start that over. As a
lifelong inventor, I am excited, delighted, and humbled to be

(02:39):
inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. This is
he told this to Disney Parks. He said, to be
included alongside my childhood hero Thomas Edison and my lifelong
role model Jim West, the electreate microphone inventor who's also
a black man. It's exciting and humbling, and as someone
who's had the privilege of working at the Walt Disney Company,

(03:01):
it's especially meaningful to know that Walt Disney himself is
also an inductee, So big shout out to you, mister smooth.
Next up, Cole Trane Curtis. If you know him, you
know he's an icon for marketers like myself and he
makes Afro Tech News Today. Team Epiphany the company he

(03:21):
founded his black indigenous people of color founded marketing agency,
and they've worked with people like Easter Ray, companies like
American Express and more. They have been acquired by Stagwell.
Kudos to you, Coltrane, he said in a statement. We're
excited to become part of Stagwell and its constellation network

(03:42):
a company that shares our values and looks to further
Team epiphanies long standing commitment to aspirational marketing, embracing culture,
and impacting communities of influence through our work. As previously
reported by afro Tech, Curtis runs the business alongside his
why and fellow managing partner, Lisa Chu. The team works

(04:04):
to not only put culture at the forefront of the agency,
but also create community impact through its efforts. Team Epiphany's
clients include American Express, HBO, Max, Heineken Moore. For AMX,
the company worked on the company's campaigns for its AMX
one hundred for one hundred program, which invested two point

(04:26):
five million dollars in black female entrepreneurs part of their
press release and what's more, after creating launch campaigns for
the Insecure Fest for Easter Ray's show Insecure, Team Epiphany
went on to obtain a strategic partnership with Ray's Hooray
Media in twenty twenty three. Justin Lewis, who's chair of Constellation,

(04:49):
said in the statement, people tend to see Team Epiphany
and one to compartmentalize its offerings into multicultural or experiential,
but when I met the team, it became clear it
me that their deep appreciation and mastery of culture is
an essential ingredient for contemporary brands focused on forward looking growth.

(05:09):
I'm excited to welcome col Train, Lisa and the entire
team to the network. So much more afro tech news,
but I'll do one more for today, and that is
seven diverse brands will be shelved at Target stores thanks
to a woman owned tech platform prioritizing diverse led startups
and suppliers. This push is in part due to Diverse

(05:32):
Powered Brands of Business to Business Global digital catalog that
helps buyers connect with diverse supplies and brands. According to
his website, the efforts have led to victories for the
new business owners. According to a news release, thirteen suppliers
to partner a pitch competition moderated by Diverse Powered Brands
in last year at Target headquarters in Minneapolis, and suppliers

(05:56):
were able to pitch Target's wine team while founders interacted
with the executives from several wine distribution companies. And among
the companies who will be on this shelf soon is
Boyd Crew Wines, which has been talked about an afrotech
before it is a story on afrotech dot com entitled
the Boyds are behind the first Black family owned wine

(06:18):
company in Maryland, So check that story out on afrotech
dot com. It created out of a deep desire to
honor their families legacy. Matthew and jon El Boyd created
Boyd Crew Wines, which is a family owned winery crafting
locally made wines. Were also fostering community and connection. Jon
El said in the statement, as the old saying gohs,

(06:40):
representation matters, and although when considering entering the wine industry
and starting our own winery, we noticed there was a
lack of diversity, it was the innovation and history of
what our ancestors were able to accomplish and what that
stood for that gave us the faith and the courage
to move forward and launch our own wine company. They're

(07:02):
Wine reopened in twenty twenty three, and they said their
ultimate goal is to own and operate a standalone vineyard
with a community marketplace incubator for entrepreneurs and small businesses
who are just starting their business. So salute to you
and you guys, go look for them on a target
shelf soon. That's Shaffro Tech News, Black Tech green Money

(07:39):
will Lucas here another exciting episode. I'm excited about this
one because I could do by virtue of tell you
my story hopefully inspire you to take bigger steps in
your journey without the things that hold you back today.
So I'm going to tell you two different stories today. One,

(08:02):
I'm going to tell you the story of afro Tech,
how I found my way at afro Tech. I've told
pieces of your story on previous episodes, but today I'm
going to tell it from like a slightly different perspective.
And I want to tell you the story of my
marketing company Creatio, which I was actually when I was
looking at the Afrotech News that I was going to
do today, it was so fitting to talk about what

(08:25):
col Trane Curtis did in the Afrotech News segment previous
to get into this section right here, because Cold Train
is such an inspiration to people like myself. So I'm
going to talk about two stories for my life and
give you, hopefully fodder to feed the spirit inside you
of going without permission. Okay, so the first one, let's

(08:49):
see I'll do I'll do Creatio first because that one
came first in my life. So Creatio is a full
service marketing production technology agency. We do everything from video production,
website development, communication, strategy design, more and we're situated in

(09:10):
Northwest Ohio and in my region, I have the only
full service agency that's run by a black person, that's
run by a minority. So we lean into that particular
niche and because we own it, there is no other
person doing it in our region. And so I'm like,
if I'm going to be the only person doing this,

(09:31):
and I'm the only minority that's doing this, then i
have a particular value proposition, a competitive advantage that every
other marketing company in the region does not have. So
I'm going to lean into the things that make us special. Well,
my company I started because I got an idea and

(09:52):
it's in sort of a way, well, it's truly a
way that if you're just paying attention to the way
that your life works, you will pay attention. I've given
you this quote before because it is my favorite quote.
It's that Steve Jobs quote, and it says, you can't
connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect the
dots looking backward. And what I get from that and

(10:13):
it's necessary to set this foundation, as I tell my
story is when you're in certain times of your life,
you may not always appreciate in the moment or understand
why in the moment you're doing the thing that you're
doing now, whether that is why am I in this
particular relationship, Why am I working at this particular job,

(10:35):
Why am I working this particular function at this particular job,
Why am I taking this class, et cetera, et cetera,
And you feel in the blank. And so I got
my idea for what we do at Creatio, not intentionally
on my part, but it was by virtue of the
dots connecting for me. And so I was wanting to

(10:58):
be in the music business growing up. I told you guys,
it's part of my story. Before I wanted to be
in the music business, I didn't necessarily want to be
an artist, because that wasn't my gift. I wanted to
be a songwriter, a producer. I wanted to be the
person behind the scenes helping the person make amazing music.
I will particularly write R and B songs. I could
write rock songs, things like this. I could produce R

(11:23):
and B beats, hip hop beats, etc. And I thought
it was pretty good at it, but The point in
telling you that part is that I'm from Toledo, Ohio,
and in Toledo there's not a music industry scene necessarily,
or at least the scene as we consider the music
industry to be. There is no scene for the music

(11:44):
business in Toledo if you want to be signed by
a record label or there's no record labels on the corner,
you know, and there's not a lot of studios, etc.
And so me, being a very ambitious teenager, I said,
you know, well, look well I live intele Ohio, not
moving yet, So what is how close can I get

(12:05):
to the music industry from where I'm at? And I've said,
you know, well, the radio is pretty close. And mind
you like this. This is years after having asked myself
that question first, which is why I learned how to
play the drums, because I was like, you know, I
wanted to be in the music business one day, let
me start learning some instruments. And so I started playing

(12:27):
the drums in church. But I wanted to give you
that so later in my teenage years, I'm like, you know,
the radio is the closest thing to the music business here,
And so I went to a teen summit which was
at least I'm not sure if it was produced by
or hosted by, but there was a program director from

(12:48):
a local radio station on the panel at this teen summit.
And this is before I graduated from high school. So
this program director is on stage at this teen Summit.
I'm there with a friend of mine and I'm like, Okay,
here's my chance, because I want to be in the
music business and he's in the radio, and I've already
determined that the radio is the best way for me

(13:10):
to find my way into the industry. And so at
the end of the teen Summit event, which was at
a local library, I walked up to him and I'm like, hey,
you know, my name is Will Lucas, and I want
to be in the music business. You know me me
as sixteen, seventeen year old kid, and I'm just like,
I don't you know how to make that sound any

(13:31):
you know, more professional or whatever. It's just like, this
is what I want, you know, tell me what to do.
And so at the end of that conversation he was like,
you know, well number one, there was like a bunch
of other people in line waiting to talk to him,
and so I'm like, one of ten kids at the
time waiting to talk to him and get some of
his attention. And so he's like, you know, the best

(13:52):
thing I can tell you to do is find an
internship somewhere. As a matter of fact, just come out
to the radio station and we'll talk some more. Because
again there was other students' kids. They're waiting to talk
to him. So he's like, just come out to the
radio station, we'll talk some more and I can spend
some more time with you. So that next day, because
that's just the kind of person that was in him,

(14:14):
next day, I drove out to the radio station, which
was like in this one of the suburbs of Toledo.
It was out in the country. So I drove out
there after going to school. That they drove out because
he had the afternoon drive radio program, so he was
on the air from three to eight. So I got
out of school at like three and then drove out

(14:36):
there to talk to them. So I like, I get
out there and he's like, you know again we number one.
He gave me this catalog which is like this old
musician's friend catalog, which are these catalogs of instruments, keyboards,
you know, processors, beat machines, and et cetera. He gives

(14:57):
me this catalog and he's like, you know here. So
I'm like, you know, thank you. I didn't have the
money to buy none of that stuff anyway, So it
was strange that he gave him me. At least I
thought it was strange. It was the fleeting thought. But
so it gives me this catalog and it's like, you
know again, the best thing I can tell you to
do is find an internship somewhere. Matter of fact, we
need to intern here. And so my internship at the

(15:21):
radio station started that day and so three days. So
every day after going to school, I would get in
the car and drive out to the radio station immediately
after school. Three days into that internship. Because I don't
even it wasn't even like a structured internship. I would

(15:41):
just hang out with him and learn what he was doing.
And so I would go out there. Three days after
doing that, he put me on the air with him,
like on a whim during the five o'clock traffic jam,
because again he was on from three to eight, So
at five o'clock he puts me on the air with them.
Three days in and he's like you know, something to
the effect of like, hey, I'm out here. You know, well,

(16:03):
Lucas is in the studio with me, and we just
jamming for thirty minutes, which was the five o'clock traffic jam,
and so then I would come off the air. No,
I stayed on the air with him until eight o'clock
I would finish the show. And so I was on
every day after that, starting at five o'clock, because I
guess the chemistry was just really good until it's like

(16:24):
he's kept putting me on. Six months after that, they
gave me a Saturday night show on that station. I
was doing six to ten on Saturday nights, and it
happened to be pretty good at it because I was
beating all the big radio stations in town on Saturday nights.
And then six months after that he went to the
morning show and they gave me his drive time radio show.

(16:47):
But this story is not about me in the radio.
I just got to set a bed for the story
I actually want to talk about, and that is creatio.
And so again, I did not get into radio to
be in radio. I got into radio to be in
the music business. But I told you this. My favorite

(17:08):
quote from Steve Jobs about connecting the dots right, so
you know, keep that in your head. So I am
walking through a clothing store in my hometown. This is
after I had been on the radio maybe three years
or so. So I'm walking through a clothing store and
they're playing it's like a hood clothing store, so they

(17:31):
sell stuff very inexpensively. It's in the part of town,
in the inner city, et cetera. So I'm walking through
the clothing store at this time, I had had, you know,
two or three years of radio experience under my belt.
And this clothing store is playing FM radio over their
sound system as there in store music, so inevitably the

(17:53):
commercials come on and so you can hear it, like
on all the speakers in the store can hear the
commercials just like you can hear the music. And so
one of their competitors came on another clothing stores commercial
came on over the air inside the store that I'm
standing in, and I'm at the time, if I recall,

(18:16):
I was like the only person shopping at that time.
And it was a big store too, and so it's
like fifteen thousand square feet and so I'm the only
person in the store. At this particular moment and that
these commercials come on and one of their competitors come on,
and I'm looking at the I'm looking at the speaker.
I'm looking up at the roof the ceiling looking at

(18:38):
a speaker like I can't believe what I'm hearing because
it makes no sense. Why are they allowing another clothing
store to get airtime in their clothing store. It doesn't
make sense to me. And so in that moment, I'm like,
they need their own radio station that just talks about them.
And so this light bulb goes off like, hey, I
can build that. Because I had just had three years

(19:02):
so far of radio experience, I know how to make
a radio program. And so one of my mentors at
the time owned six McDonald's and I would DJ for
him because he also like hosted Wednesday night skate. I
think he still does in town. It's like forever ago,
but he was at least back then I think he

(19:23):
still does. Was the host of skating in our town
every Wednesday night, and so I DJ for him, and
so I went to skate. I went to DJ for
our skating that next Wednesday night, and I'm like glug
Glenn I got this idea, like, I want to build
these radio stations, these custom radio stations for brands, Like

(19:45):
the same music that you would listen to on the radio,
same music that's tailored for the audience that's going to
be in your store. But when the radio DJ comes on,
in between the songs, they're talking about that busines. So
imagine you know, me being like in it was called
VIP Clothing store, so imagine me it's called VIP Sports.

(20:08):
So imagine me being in VIP Sports. And in between
the songs, DJ comes on, like, yo, welcome to VIP Sports.
That was the latest song from this particular artist. Hey
make sure you check out in Asle two. We've got
a sale on hoodies and all backpacks are twenty five
percent off. Here's the latest song from this other artist.

(20:30):
You're listening to VIV Sports Radio. So that was the idea.
And so what I wanted to do was build this thing.
And at this time it's just an idea. But when
I told my mentor, Glenn, he's like his eyes got
big and he's like do it, and that's all he said.
And Glenn was not the kind of guy to just
have that particular kind of response to something. But then

(20:53):
he wasn't gonna like easily encourage you to go do
something that he didn't think had any merit. And so
him's you know, being looking at me to he was
looking at me and just like do it made it?
Gave me validation that it was something and if I
can make it something real, it could be something real.
So I go and I go to the studio, back

(21:14):
to the radio station, and I put together like this
demo of what it could sound like in a McDonald's restaurant,
because again he had six McDonald's that he owned. And
so I'm like, like, if I build this, like, would
you let me test it in one of your restaurants?
And so he gave me one restaurant I could test

(21:35):
it in. And what's interesting about what this particular restaurant
he allowed me to test this in. And this is
the actual point of this story to pay attention here.
So I go to this McDonald's restaurant Number one. I
didn't know how to stream over the internet. This is
you know, mid this is like not two thousand, but

(21:57):
it's not quite twenty ten, so it's it's mid two thousands,
and so I didn't know how to stream. At the time,
streaming was not like a huge thing back then. And
so I'm like, I'm gonna just burn a CD of
a radio program and I'm going to produce that and
then put it in his store. So I produced this thing.

(22:18):
The store doesn't have a CD player, so I find
a and I needed it to loop, and so I
didn't really know what I was doing. So I bought
a mini computer. It was a mini PC, and I
just programmed it to just loop continuously this one hundred
and twenty minute, ninety minute whatever it was CD, just
on a loop. And so I'm all ready to go.

(22:41):
I get to the store and the store does not
have speakers in the lobby area, and you have to
sit the actual media console, the hardware, the DVD player
or the CD player or in my case, the computer
in the back office. And so I've got to figure

(23:02):
out I've never run by this time, I had never
run any type of wires. Was like, I was a
very like interesting kid in the fact that I would
play with electronics, but I really I knew enough to
figure it out, but I had never done it. I
had never had any experience doing it, especially not in
a commercial environment. It has its own city code and

(23:23):
et cetera and laws, and so I've got to figure
out number one, what to buy speakers, wise to get
it appropriately designed for this restaurant, having never done this before.
Got to figure out how to get speaker wire from
the back of the restaurant to the front of the
restaurant where the speakers are, having never done that before.

(23:46):
And also the CD player or the PC in my condition,
how to get that to work. And so the challenge
on top of this was there was no ceiling tile
between the back office and the front of the restaurant.

(24:07):
It's drywall, so I can't run the speaker wire above
the ceiling to make it look appropriate and to be
safe like your kid. You can't just run speaker wire
without a conduit like you're supposed to put it in
something to protect it that I know now. I didn't
know this then. I knew what I was about to do,

(24:28):
which I'm about to tell you wasn't like the way
to do it, but it was all I knew. And
so I had this speaker wire which was not even
it was car speaker wire, like it was not even
commercial speaker wire. It was not because commercial with speaker wire.
I'm about to get way too technical for a second,
but commercial commercial speaker wire is wrapped in this gray cabling.

(24:52):
The speaker wire I was using is for guys and
guys who would notice. It's this transparent and you can
see the copper on the inside of it, and that's
what you're using cars. So the speaker wire I'm using
is the stuff that you're using cars. I didn't know
this at the time. I just knew speaker wire or
speaker wire. To make it worse again, I didn't have

(25:16):
a way to get it from the office in the
back to the front the lobby, and so I'm like, okay, well,
and I've got to go through a commercial kitchen to
do this, which you also have to be doubly safe
because it's all kinds of fire issues back there, fire
protection and fire prevention issues back there. But I didn't
know any of this stuff at this time, and so

(25:38):
all I know is I got to get the music
from the back of the store to the front of
the door. And so I take a staple gun and
I staple this speaker wire to the dry wall through
the kitchen from the back of the restaurant to the
front of the restaurant, clearly visible to anybody who walked through.

(25:59):
In the middle of the aisle, where in between the
grill and fry station, you look up and you can
see naked speaker wire running through this McDonald's restaurant. I
didn't know no other way. All I knew was I
was trying to get music to play, and so put
a book marked there because that's story number one. Story

(26:20):
number two was right here. So I went to afrotech,
my first afrotech in twenty seventeen. And again, if you're
listening of this podcast, you've heard this part of the story.
So I went to afrotech in twenty seventeen. I started
my first podcast in twenty sixteen, and it's called of

(26:41):
ten Podcasts. It's still on iTunes. If you go look
for it, you will hear the Will Lucas of eight
years ago. You will hear those podcast episodes and I'm
talking to black technologists. And at the end of the
first season of ofp ten Podcasts, I had heard about
this thing called afrotech, and I was like, how did

(27:01):
I not know that this thing happened? Because everybody I
had interviewed on my podcast of ten podcasts. The first
season was on stage at the first AFRO Tech and
I'm like, how did I miss this thing? And so
I'm like, I'm never going to miss another Afrotech And
so as twenty seventeen approaches, I positioned myself to go.

(27:23):
And I also knew at the time, like there was
no real home for black technologists. There was like no
homecoming for us, and so I knew I was going
to have a remarkable time because we were not on
the cover of tech Crunch back then, like we were
not getting placed in YC Y Combinator back then, and

(27:43):
so black people were very way more underrepresented in technology
back when Afrotech started. And so I'm like, I know,
I'm going to have a remarkable time. So and I
got this radio background, all the things I'm going to go,
and I got this podcast. I'm gonna go, and I'm
gonna vlog every day of this conference. And since I

(28:06):
got this podcast, I'm also gonna pass out flyers like
club flyers, but instead of being club flyers their podcasts advertisements,
they're like podcast flyers to let people know I got
a podcast, and here are the people that are on it.
Because it's the same people that's at on stage at
this conference. So I'm walking around with like you've seen

(28:31):
like a selfie stick like this is. I didn't even
have a selfie stick. I'm just walking around with a
camera looking at myself, you know, selfie talking to the
camera all day long at afro Tech twenty seventeen. And
so I'm like, I need to get this content out
quickly because my whole intent was to give people FOMO
because I knew I was gonna have a good time.

(28:52):
And I'm like, if I'm going to have a good time,
I want the world to know that they missed out
on this afro Tech. So I would record all day
and if I recall, afro Tech twenty seventeen was like
three days long. It was like all day Thursday, all
day Friday, all day maybe partial of the day Saturday.
So I get there probably Wednesday night, and I've logged

(29:16):
my experience going to the airport, being at afro Tech
all day Thursday, and I'm like, Okay, I'm gonna edit
this video in my hotel room tonight. And so Thursday,
I edit the video that night and I publish it
to YouTube that night. And so Friday, a few people

(29:36):
walk up to me like, yo, I saw your video
from yesterday. That was pretty sweet. So I do the
same thing Friday. But my intent, Remember, it's just to
get people, fomo, That's all my intent is. And so
all day Friday, I record, walk around with a camera
and edit the video that night in my hotel room

(29:56):
and I publish it to YouTube that night. So Saturday
I will around and way more people are like, yo,
I saw your video from yesterday, and the one before
the day before that, like that's doe, Like how are
you doing this that fast? And so unintentionally I was
building a name for myself because again I was trying

(30:16):
to get people from mo but I was becoming the
Will Lucas who does this podcast today and I didn't.
But that was not the intent. I knew. I wanted
to contribute something to the conversation and contribute something to
the culture. And so in my innocence of doing that,
I was doing the work. So today these blessings are apparent.

(30:39):
So I'm the brand manager Afrotech today. All right, So
let me actually it makes sense to tell you just
one minute on that. And so I took my wife
with me in twenty eighteen, I'm like, you've got to
see this conference. This is the most remarkable thing. You
got to see all these black people in San Francisco.
So I took my wife to two eighteen. I did

(31:01):
not vlog that year, but at the end of that
conference of twenty eighteen, she's like, that was remarkable. I'm like,
wasn't it remarkable? That was remarkable. You should not come
back unless you're on stage. And I'm like, how am
I gonna get on this stage? Did you see the
people on that stage? How am I going to get
on that stage? But I'm like, challenge accepted. I don't

(31:23):
know how I'm gonna do it, because if people on
that stage are doing it, I don't know how I'm
gonna get on that stage. But if you say I
should be on that stage, I want to figure out
how to be on that stage. And so I found
a photo of somebody else, I think it was an
war bay I would find. I found a photo of
an war on the Afro Tech stage and I put

(31:44):
it on my vision board. And so every day from
December to March April, because there's a reason that it stopped.
In March April, I was wake up and I would
see this picture that one day I'm going to get
on this afro Tech stage and this next time they
open up a call for speakers, I'm going to apply.

(32:05):
And so they open up a call for speakers in
like February March. And so around that time I told
you guys this story before I get an email and
it says, hey, my name is and I'll work for
and we're going in a new direction for afro Tech.
And Morgan Debon, who's the CEO of Blavity, says we

(32:26):
should talk to you about running it. And I'm like,
I cannot believe what I'm reading right now. This is
an email. I'm sitting at a red light in Toledo,
and I'm like, I'm being asked to have a conversation
about running afro Tech as the brand man mis year.
And so I'm like, I went from just trying to

(32:47):
figure out a way to get five minutes on stage
to being a part of the conversation about running afro Tech.
Now to culminate these two stories, the reason I told
these two stories is because you, my friend, are waiting
for somebody to tell you when it's time to go,
when it's time to do the thing, and that's a mistake.

(33:13):
We're waiting for you to get tired enough of being
tired in the role that you're in, or in the
role or not in the role that you want to
be in. We're waiting for you to get tired of that,
tired enough that you do something about it. Because there
is nobody coming to save you. There is nobody coming

(33:37):
to tap you on the shoulder and say it's go time.
So because there's nobody coming to do that, I'm gonna
say it it's go time. So whether or not you
decide to go it is completely up to you. But
I'm telling you the only way to go is to
take the limits off yourself dream again and do something.

(34:05):
When I was doing creatio stapling speaker car speaker wire
to a commercial kitchen's roof ceiling that was not legal.
Number one, I'm not telling me you do something that's illegal.
But what I'm saying is in my innocence, I'm like,
let's go, LFG like we just going because I'm going

(34:28):
to figure this thing out. All I know to do
is what I know to do, and I'm gonna do
what I know to do until I know to do better.
But what I know to do I'm want to do it.
That's the only difference between people who make it and
people who don't go. Regardless. When I was going to

(34:50):
Afrotech twenty seventeen, and the thing about like doing this,
like going without permission. Sometimes people go and it's innocent,
like they don't even know that there being ambitious. They
just go. But it's still ambitious. So when I went
to twenty seventeen, my whole point was to contribute to

(35:11):
the conversation. I wasn't going to be the brand manager
of Afrotech. I didn't even know what the experience was
going to be. Like, I had never been to Afrotech.
I wasn't going to, you know, develop a name for myself.
That happened because I was doing the work period and
it was honest and it was authentic. But I went

(35:32):
and I didn't ask permission for somebody to let me record.
I didn't even know if you could bring a camera,
you know, and start set up shop. You know. I'm
just out here recording y'all footage. I'm recording, taking clips.
I'm gonna publish it to my YouTube. I don't even
know if that's allowed, But not an ass I'm just
doing it. I'm showing up, I'm recording, I'm publishing YouTube.

(35:53):
Come see me. It's still on These videos are still
on YouTube. If you Google, or if you go to
YouTube and you start Will Lucas afrotech, you will see
these videos. And they were done with innocence. Stapling speaker
wire to the ceiling of a McDonald's kitchen was done
from innocence, but also ambition and also like, look, nobody's

(36:15):
gonna give me a playbook on how to be successful.
I've got to figure it out for myself and write
the playbook for my story. Nobody was gonna give me
a playbook and say, here's what you do. You go
to afro Tech. You find a big conference to go
to afrotext, the one you take a video camera and
you go record every day and also make You're not

(36:35):
just recording every day. You also go into your hotel
room every night and you're gonna edit the video that night,
publish it that night, and then walk around the next day.
And meanwhile you're also taking flyers and everybody you interviewed
on your podcast, and you're gonna go Kinko's fedexx office
and print them and then you're gonna print them. You're
gonna print five hundred copies, and then you're gonna go
to AFRO Tech, you go on video camera, you gonna

(36:57):
edit that night, you're gonna publish the YouTube that I
also walk around with five hundred flyers talking about your podcast.
And then also that as also also there was no playbook.
I was just doing stuff in furtherance and hopeful furtherance
of the mission, which was to contribute to the conversation

(37:18):
with creatiol. The mission was to figure out how to
make a business be said, to know how. There was
no playbook for my story. You can get clues and
tidbits and advice and etcetera from other people and books
and podcasts and etcetera. And I think you should. But

(37:40):
you also just have to learn by movement, get active,
get about it like you gotta just go, and you
got to figure it out along the way. Well, too
many of us wait for is the permission number one?
And to have certainty that the destination we plug into

(38:03):
navigation is the place we're going to arrive at. I'm
telling you the destination is the goal, but the place
where you will actually land up will be better than
you could have imagined because you don't even know what
opportunities are available to you. We have a limited view
of what our opportunities are. But when you get about it,

(38:27):
and when you get active, a world opens up to
you things that you had not even imagined you wanted
to do. As you learn and as you grow, as
you see more things, as you get more experiences, as
you meet more people, your desires will change. They will
get bigger. The scope of things that become at your

(38:48):
grasp get enhanced. But none of this happens if you
sitting there in your car on your way to a
job that you hate, with people you don't even want
to be that don't actually pour into your life. If
you're sitting there waiting for something to happen, something will

(39:09):
happen because you know, I firmly believe some people jump
and some people are pushed. Firmly believe that something will happen.
What I'm saying is what you want to happen, you
can actually get about it. There is no playbook, there
is no prescribed way you're going to find your success.

(39:33):
The only objective is to get active in doing the
work that you know to do. Don't stay focused on
the big goal, the big dream. Yeah, write it down,
have a picture of it, keep it, you know in
your mind when you wake up in the morning and
have a visual of it, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.
But the only thing you need to focus on is

(39:53):
what to do next, Not what to do ten steps
from now, not what to do one hundred steps from now,
Not what you're gonna do when you got this big company,
when you live in this big influencer's dream, when you're
the CEO of this big foundation, et cetera, et cetera.
The only thing that matters is the very next step.
That next step could be as simple as sending an

(40:15):
email to somebody who could be key key contact for
your thing. That next step could be going to your
state's website to find out if they have dollars or
training programs to support retraining for people who have worked
in certain jobs and now need to figure out how
to do coding and software development and AI and etc.

(40:38):
Many states have programs for this, many universities. Maybe your
next step is going to your local university community college's
website to figure out if they have training program certificate
programs to help you figure out how to do AI,
or do software development, or build a website, or do
video production intro to video production. Maybe your next step

(41:01):
is just going to the website and seeing if you
can apply for a class, not figuring out how you're
gonna pay for it. The next step is just figuring
out what's available to you, and then once you know
what's available to you, then the next step changes. It's
actually writing an application and submitting it to the school.
Maybe it's applying for financial aid. Whatever it may be,

(41:22):
the next step is the only thing you should be
thinking about, is the point? What is the next step?
Too many of us are waiting for somebody to tell
us the steps. When I'm saying, just get active, Just

(41:44):
get around the conversation, Just get around people who are
doing things, and the next step will become a parent.
Start listening to the right things, get around the right people,
Consume things that help you stay far focused on your dream.
It's possible. I don't care what you're dreaming about, the

(42:04):
thing that you've been delaying, the thing that you've been
discouraged about. Get active, stop waiting for permission. The answers
are found when you get in motion. If you got
something out of this episode, Share with somebody I appreciate it,
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