Despite having generated billions in revenue over the past two decades, African-American women do not receive nearly enough attention for their entrepreneurial acumen.
To put a finer point on it: Our women are THE leading demographic in business startups and do so with fewer resources and support.
This lack of recognition is what prompted Andrea Hoffman and Kathey Porter– an expert in supplier diversity, executive coaching, and small business development– to pen 50 Billion Dollar Boss, a title referencing the amount of money that African-American women have generated in business since 1997. Porter explains that the page turner, which has been nominated for an Image Award, chronicles Black female leaders and their journeys, but in a practical and instructional way.
“It is a true business book in that it provides their perspective on how they solved a particular business challenge while they grew their businesses,” Porter tells EBONY.com, adding that it sheds light on a variety of scenarios, including subjects who left lucrative careers to start the business, raised funds, or stayed resilient when things weren’t always going according to plan.
She hopes poring over these stories will inspire even more action.
“Hopefully, readers will be encouraged to pursue their entrepreneurial aspirations and ultimately double and, even, triple the number of women leading their own businesses,” Porter adds.
To that end, she summarizes some five billion-dollar boss tips that could help the next emerging entrepreneur. (Make sure to bookmark this bad boy.)
Step out of the “ideal” mentor box. Mentors don’t always come in the way that you envision. Some the best opportunities can come from the most unlikely places or people. Don’t turn up your nose at anyone’s offer to assist. Sift through the advice at will, but be open to all of it.
There is no such thing as disposable income. As an entrepreneur, you can’t do the same things you use to like going to dinner or getting a new pair of shoes. Your business will always be on your mind and you will have to invest in it. Yep, and that goes for your daily espresso habit too.
Be in it for the long haul or at least give yourself a time frame. None of the ladies featured in this book were an overnight success. They put in the work and continue to put in the work years after starting. Don’t give up if you don’t immediately get featured by Forbes.
Look at opportunities that are unique and allow you to have a distinct point of differentiation. Each one of the ladies started business in industries where there weren’t many competitors that looked like them.
No man (or woman) is an island. Get your squad together, even if it is small. These are like-minded folks that will keep you going and grounded.
The 50 Billion Dollar Boss book tour is underway. For more information or details on how to get the book, visit the official website.