Here is an excerpt from my book Mind Your Own Damn business. These are some of the biggest mistakes I have seen many black business owners make and the lesson’s I’ve learned the hard way over the years. PLEASE NOTE, this is not applicable to all black entrepreneurs but these are the entrepreneurs that I personally steer clear of. The bottom line, don’t ask anyone for something you are not willing to give yourself. Enjoy… (click “Next” above or below to see more)
We’ve got some GREAT ideas…but
I’ve seen and heard some of the most remarkable ideas from black potential entrepreneurs. Everything from music production to publishing to specialty restaurants to wedding planner to hair and make-up break-thru formulas. There are many fields where African American’s dominate but have little or no control of the business. The most prevalent of those area are: Sports, Entertainment, Hair and Specialty Foods. Why are you giving your ideas away when the business could be YOURS? And where is the implementation? We have ideas but no way of implementing them and no plans as to how it can be done. Before you tell ANYONE what your plan is, figure out how you can do it FIRST.
Hook a Brotha Up!!! (how incredibly annoying)
These are the people that you usually only hear from only when they need something from you…they only call on people for favors in business but expect to be paid top dollar when they give help to someone else. We don’t want to be ripped off or taken advantage of but a lot of the time, it is exactly what WE do and worse yet to our black contacts. We dare not ask our white contacts to “hook us up?” We want special treatment again and again or we deliver half backed goods for a fully cooked price. Please know that while people will do you favors from time to time, it becomes annoying when you are CONSTANTLY calling them for favors. We don’t often know when to be classy about the exchange either. I’ve had “friends” call me for concert tickets not just for themselves but for 3 other people too. That’s tacky and nobody wants to be used. Moreover, if you keep calling in favors the person you are calling will eventually stop taking your calls. Then we often accuse them of “going Hollywood” and “forgetting about where THEY came from”
“The world REALLY does not owe you anything”
It would be nice if the world was our never-ending credit card, streaming endless currency to us whenever we wanted it. Just because you have struggled in the past, it does not mean the world owes you something in return. I myself thought this too which was why I started my first business. I thought people should buy from me FIRST because I’m … WRONG! People should buy from you first because you area great resource for them and provide the services they need. Complaining ALWAYS looks like sour grapes. Even if there is legitimacy to what you see in racism or favoritism, the people you are accusing of it don’t and will never see it the same way YOU look at it or they will shut down on you and not deal with you. Yuu will look like the bad guy. There are just some things that are KNOWN and don’t need to be said. Do you really think someone is going to give you an opportunity after you attack them? HELL NO, they are not…. and I guarantee you that you will get very old and very bitter, very quick waiting. I’ve seen it happen time and again.