We can all agree 2020 was an eye-opener since the last few years were. Because of the events, African American men and women of color should be more open to Black entrepreneurship.
Because of the shenanigans of the former presidential administration, it’s clear we need to band together. We have to stop using tired excuses to stall success. Just the thought of what we just went through should be enough for us to rise up.
Thinking About Black Entrepreneurship?
Is it time for us to become more independent? I think so. I mean, did we not learn anything from our Black and Brown ancestors? They farmed their land and sold their harvests to their own… and feed their families. It’s what my family did in the 60s and early 70s. I hated planting the seeds and picking peas. It was hard work, but it was worth it.
Because we grew our food, our parents could provide us healthy, wholesome meals. It also meant there would be enough vegetables for the winter. Some sold produce at the farmer’s market on or the street corners. Women cooked and catered meals to bring in money. Others cut out patterns to make school clothes, quilts, and wedding gowns.
It was our parents and our grandparents who set the tone for Black entrepreneurship. We didn’t even realize it as children. I feel anyone surviving this digital transformation, including teen entrepreneurs, should be thinking about Black entrepreneurship. Age doesn’t matter much. Young boys and girls are CEOs of lemonade stands and Mo’s bows. They earn a respectable living and give back to the communities.
You can start-up a business at almost any age without having a lot of startup capital. Men or women can launch a fashion blog and website to showcase and sell their designs. If a person can establish a business re-purposing old tires and turn pallets into marketable items, there’s something you can do that doesn’t require much money to startup!
If you don’t feel comfortable with any of those suggestions, do you have a unique voice? People are making big bank for doing voiceovers for commercials or public speaking. Do you have a knack for making people laugh, putting together an outfit, or applying makeup? Don’t underestimate these gifts as being insignificant. The results are clear as a new YouTube, Instagram, or TikTok star is born every day.
Black Entrepreneurship Is Good for the Economy
Despite an unpredictable economy, African American entrepreneur ideas are responsible for many changes that you will see in the future. Since enterprise creates opportunities for others, I won’t lie, the path is a lonely and imperfect one. Although this may be true, the rewards are well worth the long nights and maxed-out credit cards.
The Center for American Progress reports between 1997 and 2013 businesses owned by African-American women saw an increase of a whopping 258%. Latina business owners grew by an impressive second of 180%. Asian women followed with 156% growth.
The national score of Black women businesses is now earning more than $226.8 billion annual revenue. The breakthrough for women of color provides new jobs and services for others. Hopefully, the business collaborations will include other Black business owners, in and out of the immediate circle. As a result of these women-owned business relationships, everyone makes a profit. I love what Thriftntell is doing with her hobby.
Iesha Gilchrist: Fashionista and Entrepreneurship
I don’t know any woman who doesn’t at least want to look her best. When we find a deal, we’ll buy it even though we can’t wear it “right now.” It’s that just-in-case outfit. But there comes a time when we have to let go and clean out our closet because three years is just too long to hang on to something we haven’t worn yet. Instead of throwing them away, donate them to your local Goodwill.
Goodwill brings the opportunity to the neighborhood by hiring individuals who have certain disabilities that prevent other employers from hiring them. Plus, when there’s a disaster, you can count on non-profits like Goodwill to make donations and Goodwill is where you’ll find Iesha Gilchrist.
She has a great sense of fashion and doesn’t mind showing us how she does it. Iesha has a talent for putting together outfits for any occasion. She makes keeping up with the latest trends affordable. Follow Thriftntell on Instagram and see why her fans love her videos and style hacks. Not only does Iesha give us creative clothing ideas, but she uploads the treasure boxes to her website and makes a terrific profit.
Who’s Rakia Reynolds in a Nutshell?
Every business has a story to tell whether it’s a good one or one the owner should never reveal. In either case, if you can’t retell a story effectively, then why tell it, right? Rakia Reynolds, an African-American woman, knows this and she has made a profitable business as a storyteller.
She uses her gift to bring inspiration to the world as the proprietor of Skai Blue Media. As a PR person, Rakia helped hundreds of people turn their brand around with her approach to the public.
Consequently, not only a woman of color but anyone can start a business. All it takes is the confidence of a mustard seed much like that of Omar Walters.
Who Is Omar Walters?
The Omar Walters success story was told by Black Enterprise as they were able to get the juicy details on his incredible journey.
As a child, Omar found cooking exhilarating and began cooking at home for his friends and family. He started a small catering business, loaning his culinary skills out for events, parties, and social functions.
Eventually, Omar Walters would “accidentally” start his private dining restaurant without any formal training as a chef. Through Omar’s catering business, he is asked to take charge of a private affair and the rest is history. He’s currently the proud owner and chef at Omar’s Kitchen, a prestigious loft serving the elite fabulous Caribbean, Asian, Latin, and European dishes, located in Tribeca, NY.
Omar Walters stands among numerous successful Black entrepreneurs like >>>
Chef Jason Crain (Chef Hurt)
Jason Crain… one of the most inspiring chefs from the dirty south. Without knowing where life would take him, several years ago Jason stepped out on faith and moved to Atlanta from Gulfport, MS. It was there at South City Kitchen Vinings he progressed personally and as a professional. After a couple of years in the ATL, Chef Crain again packed his apron and mustard seed and stirred life’s lumps like the champion and creative culinary artist he is.
He’s whipping up another chapter in his life as the Chef de Cuisine at Saquille’s in Los Angeles, CA. Because of his mastery abilities, you can congratulate Chef Jason Crain on becoming one of the hottest brands in 2021.
Southern Cal is lucky to have Chef Hurt as Culinary Creations and as a personal chef to prepare meals fit for kings and queens. If you’ve never had grilled lamb chops, catfish, gumbo, mudbugs (crawfish), or crab legs before, the backyard barbecue is the perfect occasion to treat your taste-buds to such an enjoyable lifestyle.
Ty Allan Jackson on Youth and Black Entrepreneurship
Another way to support each other is to start teaching your children the value of money and about Black entrepreneurship. Purchase these books by children’s book author and youth motivational speaker, Ty Allan Jackson: Danny Dollar Millionaire Extraordinaire – The Lemonade Escapade and Make Your Own Money: How Kids Can Earn It, Save It, Spend It, and Dream Big.
The books teach young minds to think in terms of what money is and why they should value it. Ty, as the co-founder of the Danny Dollar Academy, is kind of a big deal. He holds the “Massachusetts inaugural Martin Luther King Jr. Content of Character Award.” He’s received citations from the Governor and Senator of Massachusetts, and the House of Representatives.
Ty’s books were featured on The Steve Harvey Show, PBS, and CNN, among other mainstream networks. It’s safe to say Michelle Obama has one in her possession.
Supporting Black Entrepreneurs
It’s through innovation and technology that entrepreneurs can break from the “norm” and become independent Black business owners.
By offering goods and services to the local and online communities, Black men and Black women entrepreneurs improve their quality of life. They can also take control of their finances so they can experience more freedom.
The business collaborations you make are one of the major keys to any successful Black entrepreneurship.
Final Thoughts on Black Entrepreneurship
We’re all born with a gift. If not that, we can develop unlimited skills during our lives. This talent can be valuable to a group of people, businesses, or organizations. Many entrepreneurial jobs are hobbies or passions which fill an unmet need.
When we get tired, we will stop learning how to survive and learn how to live! Although many of you are getting lump sums of money due to the pandemic, you still must watch everything and in particular, your spending. Ball on a budget and learn how to put away for a rainy day. We just don’t know what can happen next.
We as people of color pursuing a degree can learn a thing or two from previous generations. Don’t buy the iPhone on the release date, and don’t buy frozen greens when we can grow and sell our own. My best business advice is that of my father’s. If he told me once, he told me a thousand times, “Pay yourself first!”
Source: How Women of Color Are Driving Entrepreneurship https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/race/reports/2014/06/10/91241/how-women-of-color-are-driving-entrepreneurship/
Photo credit Ty Allan Jackson