It has been a month now since I stopped work on The Spain Report. It was a very tough decision to make after working so hard on it over the summer. Many wise readers offered me sound advice on what I might do to try to fix the problem, and for their help I am grateful.
Some bits of the project worked spectacularly well, others didn’t. I did some things right and made some mistakes, and then it was time to make a decision. Such is life.
I am disappointed by the outcome and I know many of you are too.
But I believe we must admit our failures and the problems we uncover with the reality of our ideas and theories, especially when they compete alongside other possibilities for our time, energy and treasure.
And we must take a global view of such things within the context of the other stuff going on in our lives as well.
One important aspect is the creation and exchange of value. Either you build something somebody really values and they buy it at some point as you iterate through different versions, or you don’t and the money stays in their wallets.
We discovered real value with the trip to Santiago (yes, the report is coming). Not so with the ‘regular Spain correspondent’ idea, at least not with the experiments I was able to do.
Another key is business strategy: the visions and future realities of your project, and the pathways towards them in a changing environment.
Was the goal with The Spain Report to have a great looking site and to become a new media mogul, or was it to do great journalism?
Making any change in life and in business, from one state to another, requires a certain amount of energy, time and resources, so when you undertake any kind of new project, you have to try to realistically assess:
- what it’s going to cost to make the move, and;
- if it it actually worth it, given what you uncover about future end states;
If you continue to ask these questions as you work hard on your idea, and take a good look at the results, you can save yourself a lot of future strife.
Over the next few days, I’ll be blogging about some of the lessons I’ve learnt, about which bits worked well enough to continue with and about a couple of the strategies that might work in the future, if anyone has the time and resources to invest in getting such a project to a more profitable place.
I’ll also write about where this blog is now going. There will still be lots of thinking and writing about Spain, but from a different angle, within a broader context.