Increase Your Odds Of Business Success By Solving Desperate Problems That Require Immediate Solutions

For the reasons I explained in great detail during this post, Black business owners who are serious about success need to stop structuring their businesses around hopes of appealing to African-American consumers. The masses of African-American consumers are emotionally incapable of responding appropriately to any visibly Black-owned business, regardless of its quality. African-American business owners need to position their businesses as “colorless” in order to tap into the larger pool of nonblack consumers. Unless they find out otherwise, many (if not most) American consumers will assume that a business is White-owned. Making your business “colorless” means to preserve this assumption of White ownership for as long as possible.

It takes emotional discipline to have a colorless business and to maintain secrecy about it being Black-owned. This means that you don’t get to puff your chest out and brag about how you’re a business owner. This often means that you don’t get the emotional payoff of visibly looking like The Boss.

But if you’re in tune with reality, then you know that life is not fair and that you can’t afford to behave the same way as nonblack business owners. That is, if your priority is to make the sale while providing excellent goods and service. The reality is that you won’t even get the opportunity to provide excellent products and service to most potential customers (of any race, including Blacks) if they know your business is Black-owned. As I mentioned to a reader during an earlier conversation,

For AA business owners, it’s a difficult, hostile business environment all-around. I agree with you that things are not much better with nonblack consumers. I never said it was Paradise with them. But here’s what I feel is the (meaningful) difference:

If you can position yourself in such a way that maintains “colorlessness”—let’s be blunt, in a way that maintains the illusion of White ownership—then your business has the chance to survive long enough to maybe, perhaps . . . be judged on its actual merits. There’s NO realistic hope of that when dealing with AA consumers as a visibly Black-owned business. AA consumers won’t patronize the business, AND they’ll be more prone to rob and/or steal you blind if they know it’s Black-owned.

If your business can survive long enough, you might be able to develop a professional reputation that’s well-known enough to get you over that “racism from nonblack consumers” hump.

It’s not a direct comparison (after all, she’s a WW dealing with other White people), but this is what the Men With Pens blogger was able to accomplish with her online business. She “passed” as a WM-owned business long enough to more or less get over the sexism hump.

She came up with a decidedly MALE pseudonym, and named her blog the manly-sounding “MEN With Pens.” Her problem was that at a certain point, she had to make business phone calls. And then customers would hear her (woman’s) voice.

She talked about all of this in her post entitled Why James Chartrand Wears Women’s Underpants.

I’ve heard tales of Black business owners who do like the AA plumbing company owner who pretends to be an employee of his own company when he goes out on service calls.

Later on, I’ll get back to the nuances of making your business as “colorless” as possible. But for now, let’s discuss another strategy. A strategy that can mean the difference between success or failure for visibly Black-owned businesses:

STRUCTURE YOUR BUSINESS AROUND SOLVING DESPERATE PROBLEMS THAT REQUIRE IMMEDIATE SOLUTIONS

This is an overall strategy that I learned from reading Alexis Dawes’ excellent ebook for information marketers, Desperate Buyers Only. She has noted,

Desperate people—people with throbbing problems, pressing issues, and insane drives—buy on impulse. Desperate people buy on impulse because they’re in an emotionally charged state-of-mind or state-of-being and they want to get out of it. So when you create information products for desperate people, you change the dynamics from being the person who’s doing the chasing . . . to becoming the person who’s constantly being chased.

Sales letter for Desperate Buyers Only. She gave an example of how this strategy can be applied to businesses that provide services.

A few years ago, a friend of mine had a wisdom tooth that was on the verge of exploding in his mouth. Needless to say, he needed a dentist – stat. I began thumbing through the telephone book looking for a dentist in our area. Have you ever done this? Looked in the yellow pages for a dentist? If you’re in a big city, there are like a million of them in there.

However in my search I quickly discovered there were only a handful of dentists who specialized in emergency cases. And only 1 that had a location within a 20-minute drive.

So guess who got my friends business? The closest emergency dentist we could find. My friend didn’t care about the cost. There was no time to comparison shop. We just found the dentist, and jumped in the car.

The moral of the story… pain is one heck of a motivator.

Sales letter, Desperate Buyers Only.

She’s right. A desperate consumer is a highly motivated consumer. Motivated enough to be much more likely to look beyond their racism. I can think of other examples I’ve seen in real life. When their basements are flooded at 2:00 a.m., many homeowners don’t care about the emergency plumber’s race or ethnicity. They want somebody to come out and fix the problem before they’re up to their eyeballs in water.

TO INCREASE YOUR ODDS OF BUSINESS SUCCESS, FIND THE “DESPERATE” ANGLES TO YOUR PRODUCT OR SERVICE

This will take some brainstorming, but it’s worth it. Look for the most painful and urgent problems your business can solve; and structure your business around solving them. Read this post as an example of a blogger who discovered a more “desperate” consumer base for his product.

[*Audience Note* I don’t have any affiliate relationships with anybody. If I mention or recommend a product, it’s because I’ve found it to be helpful for my own projects.]

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72 Responses to “Increase Your Odds Of Business Success By Solving Desperate Problems That Require Immediate Solutions”

  1. joyousnerd says:

    *rubbing hands together gleefully* I can’t wait to learn from this conversation!

    My muse does depend to some degree on black patrons, but I’m also trying to cultivate a white customer base. I just wrote out and then deleted my whole business plan, lest somebody beat me to the punch with my own idea! (Oversharing again!)

  2. Oshun/Aphrodite says:

    Hello Khadija,

    I remember this post. I am getting to watch this up close. A black couple (friends of the family) just opened a car lot. The man hired my DBRBM brother (who of course brags about this – his first “real job” tsk).

    At any rate they have been open for about a month – their demo is credit challenged applicants- and while business is good they have been over the course of the month:

    1. broken into, but no one took anything
    2. broken into and someone tried to steal the keys to the cars
    3. someone broke the windows to the office, but didn’t enter
    4. people passing bad checks for down payments

    etc etc

    They are in a mixed neighborhood and I know the economy is bad, but I wonder if all of this is because it is visibly black owned.

  3. JoyousNerd,

    You said, “*rubbing hands together gleefully* I can’t wait to learn from this conversation!”

    {chuckling} I’m also enjoying and learning from these nuts & bolts Black business conversations. I’m learning a lot from hearing the details about people’s different business experiences.

    I want AA business owners to succeed. Part of why so many AA businesses fail is because nobody tells the truth—out loud—about the unique obstacles facing visibly Black-owned businesses. Most of all, those obstacles created by dealing with most other Black people! Instead, what I hear Black business owners publicly discussing are the “coloring book” versions of business advice such as focusing on quality, customer service, yadda, yadda, yadda. With a deadly dose of “save alla our people” thrown into the mix.

    But the fact that AA slaves will do things like continuing to shop in filthy, rude, Korean slum stores AFTER the murder of Latasha Harlins confirms there’s more to the situation than the usual considerations of quality and customer service. AA consumers have all sorts of strange hateration attitudes toward Black folks who acquire wealth from anything other than cursing over a microphone or chasing a ball down a field. Gearing one’s business toward a group of consumers who are INCAPABLE of responding appropriately to quality and service from another Black person almost always leads to failure.

    Which brings me to your book about growing a healthy head of hair. You said, “My muse does depend to some degree on black patrons, but I’m also trying to cultivate a white customer base. I just wrote out and then deleted my whole business plan, lest somebody beat me to the punch with my own idea! (Oversharing again!)”

    It’s good that you deleted that. I probably wouldn’t have published a comment that revealed that level of detail about your plans. For their own benefit, I’m asking readers to keep their comments vague about the details of their business plans.

    However, JoyousNerd, you and other FREQUENT COMMENTERS are welcome to email me privately if you would like to brainstorm ideas about details.

    Ladies, please remember what happened to the BW filmmaker that Chris Rock allegedly ripped off after she spilled the beans to him about her Black hair documentary idea!* Loose lips sink ships! LOL!

    [*IIRC, the woman’s lawsuit was dismissed; perhaps on a technical point, I can’t recall that level of detail about that case. However, it was pretty obvious common-sense-wise that Chris Rock used her idea plus his Hollywood contacts to make his mockumentary.]

    JoyousNerd, on the one hand, having long hair IS a “desperate” niche among AA women. On the other hand, even though they’re desperate about hair, most AA women consumers won’t treat another BW’s offering with the same deference they give to mess written/created by BM. There are countless examples of this: AA women running out to buy serial cheater Steve Harvey’s relationship advice book (which, IIRC, he allegedly ripped off much of it from a BW’s book by the same title).

    In light of this, I would suggest that you have promote your book to different demographic niches, and not just rely on BW consumers. If it was me, I would seek ways to promote your book (and make it accessible) to nonblack women who might be suffering from hair loss (which is definitely a desperate angle). This would mean having 2 different sales letters—one for each type of audience. It also means not emphasizing “Black” on the book’s title or cover. Again, YOU know best about your own endeavor. Those are just some of my overall thoughts as a supportive bystander.
    ______________________________________________

    Hello there Oshun/Aphrodite,

    You said, “I remember this post. I am getting to watch this up close. A black couple (friends of the family) just opened a car lot. The man hired my DBRBM brother (who of course brags about this – his first “real job” tsk).

    At any rate they have been open for about a month – their demo is credit challenged applicants- and while business is good they have been over the course of the month:

    1. broken into, but no one took anything
    2. broken into and someone tried to steal the keys to the cars
    3. someone broke the windows to the office, but didn’t enter
    4. people passing bad checks for down payments

    etc etc”

    Oh, Noooooo! This is the WRONG type of “desperate” consumer. One wants consumers who are desperate through NO fault of their own. NOT consumers who are desperate because they’re deadbeats who don’t pay their bills!

    You see, the deadbeats that couple are trying to service aren’t customers—they’re undesirables. It’s very…very…VERY difficult to build a viable business off of undesirables. I wouldn’t be surprised if roughly 25% of their “customers” are coming into their premises in order to scope around and case the place for future break-ins.

    In short, these people are going out of their way to deal with an undesirable, physically dangerous demographic. Have they considered what they’ll do when somebody comes in there with a gun to rob them and drive off with some of their cars (to be sold to a chop shop or other such purposes)? Unfortunately (and I pray that I’m wrong about this), that’s the next step for their criminal-customers.

    Expect Success!

    • Oshun/Aphrodite says:

      Thank you Khadija,

      “One wants consumers who are desperate through NO fault of their own. NOT consumers who are desperate because they’re deadbeats who don’t pay their bills!”

      Right. I think the couple may have a bit of the save alla our people going on as well- thinking they are helping people who may have had difficulty due to the economy (tight credit) etc

      “In short, these people are going out of their way to deal with an undesirable, physically dangerous demographic. Have they considered what they’ll do when somebody comes in there with a gun to rob them and drive off with some of their cars (to be sold to a chop shop or other such purposes)? Unfortunately (and I pray that I’m wrong about this), that’s the next step for their criminal-customers.”

      I don’t think so. I am hoping they have, but light of the bad checks..I think probably not. I know that checks are instant now. For example at Wal Mart I wrote a check and they ran it through and gave it back to me – the money was taken out at that moment. I am sure a small business owner could have something similar or at least call the bank before accepting the check bc the down payments range from 1k to 2k – a fair amount.

      I am hoping that they aren’t held at gunpoint, but that is something to definitely consider. The lot is maybe a quarter to a half a mile away from the police station, but I guess that is not saying much.

  4. Hmm, got some ideas churning in my mind . . . I think I can’t get excited for most of my ideas because I can’t imagine anyone who would pay for what I’m offering. But now that I think about what people desperately need, I can see a new angle for my ideas. Thanks for writing such a great post-it’s just what I needed to get a jump start on some supplemental income.

  5. Ann says:

    Score is a great site for people who need mentors.

    http://www.score.org/index.html

  6. Miss Glamtastic(Tia),

    You’re welcome!
    _______________________________________

    Ann,

    Thanks for the info! I hadn’t heard of SCORE before. [I’m thankful that I get to learn a lot from the readers during these conversations. :-)]

    Expect Success!

    • ann says:

      To Khadija, Thank you for the comments.

      LOL, something Khadija wasn’t aware of?

      Also, Entrepreneur magazine online has good business information.

      • Ann,

        You’re welcome! There are lots of things I’m not aware of! LOL! That’s why I’m so thankful to have the opportunity to learn from the readers. {smile}

        Expect Success!

  7. Oshun/Aphrodite says:

    “JoyousNerd, on the one hand, having long hair IS a “desperate” niche among AA women. On the other hand, even though they’re desperate about hair, most AA women consumers won’t treat another BW’s offering with the same deference they give to mess written/created by BM.”

    I wanted to cosign this. And I want to add WW or a white person period. If a BM, WW, or WP says it its gold/gospel.

    I used to be a member of a hair board and left or not visit as much.

    1. they started censoring bad reviews of things or allowing companies (majority white) to use reputation management – so if you had a bad experience or an allergic reaction – you couldn’t talk about it especially if it was one of their sponsors.

    2. Dishonest promotion. There would be informative articles about how something was “safe” and everytime I would research I would find that x,y, or z was indeed harmful to the body, a carcinogen, used in motor oil and plastics or whatever.

    3. All of the BW on the board were pimped. A lot of the BW and black identified hispanic women would go out and try different ingredients and techniques on their own and freely share this – whether natural relaxed or whatever. Well somehow months later a new product/technique would be out by a white owned company with the accompanying patents and trademarks based on the information that the women shared. I would get livid at this. I went back and deleted all my substantial posts.

    I agree that you should broaden things for all women bc you will get hate from BW or maybe some Becky’s. I wasn’t trying to sell something, but after my hair got past MBL I had to password protect my fokti and I stopped commenting a lot. Then there were the peeps would ask me for info and they wouldn’t give me so much as a thank you afterwards.

    I noticed also that there were a few ex-members (they are ex now due to the insanity) who did sell products/info. They were BW and some had reached tailbone or classic length and there was all kinds of crazy – basically they (the BW consumers) are excited at first and then the drama starts, and then they tried to take em down.

    There were even some threads talking about black companies and the BW were of the attitude that they wouldn’t go out of their way to patronize a BB, but they buy products through the board from white companies that use harmful or inferior ingredients, don’t really get our hair goals depending on whether we are relaxed or natural, and that freely pimp you for info and sell your own discoveries back to you -except with exclusive rights of course.

  8. Oshun/Aphrodite,

    You said, “I wanted to cosign this. And I want to add WW or a white person period. If a BM, WW, or WP says it its gold/gospel.

    I used to be a member of a hair board and left or not visit as much.”

    I’ve heard the most ridiculous tales about the cullud girls at hair care forums. The stories all have the same basic pattern, ending with what you described when you said:

    “I noticed also that there were a few ex-members (they are ex now due to the insanity) who did sell products/info. They were BW and some had reached tailbone or classic length and there was all kinds of crazy – basically they (the BW consumers) are excited at first and then the drama starts, and then they tried to take em down.” (emphasis added)

    I know some of y’all are dismayed by my insistence upon, and recommendations for, totally bypassing AA consumers as a rule of thumb. But the countless tales of coloreds behaving badly with a Black-owned business are the reason why it’s necessary for Black business owners to leave most AA consumers ALONE.

    Quiet as it’s kept (although I told it during the 1st “art of Black-owned business” post here), most AAs want to see your business FAIL. Some AAs are passive about their desire to see your business flop (by refusing to patronize your business). Others are more active and take a hands-on approach to trying to destroy your business (stealing from you, poison-pen-comments-defamation campaign against your work, and so on).

    The same sick dynamics apply to most AA women. Look at all the hateful cullud girls who march over to this blog to tell me that they’re not going to buy my book—they proudly say this as if they think they’re hurting me.

    Incidentally, they’re NOT hurting me by not buying the book. As I told the most recent cullud girl who came here with that nonsense, I greatly prefer that people like that NOT have my book. It’s the “pearls before swine” concept—I don’t want any of the information that I’m giving to inadvertently help scum like that.

    Also, like I’ve said all along, I keep my serious, “I use this to put food on my table” income streams oriented toward serving mainstream, nonblack consumers and FAR AWAY from cullud consumers. The book sales are only used to finance the upkeep of this social activism blog. So, I don’t care what the AA slave crabs in a barrel do or don’t buy. Their choices don’t affect me.

    As a business owner, you set yourself up to be vulnerable to AA slave crabs in a barrel AND their hateration AND their sabotage when you deal with Black consumers. Or in any way orient your business to serving Black consumers.

    If you’re a Black business owner, leave the AA consumer alone.

    Expect Success!

    • ak says:

      Khadija:

      As a business owner, you set yourself up to be vulnerable to AA slave crabs in a barrel AND their hateration AND their sabotage when you deal with Black consumers. Or in any way orient your business to serving Black consumers.

      If you’re a Black business owner, leave the AA consumer alone.

      I hate to say it but it’s true Khadija. You were right all along from the time you talked about this same subject back on Muslim Bushido.

      When I start my accounting/tax preparation service business I will definitely pay some white person to be the face, and possibly the name of it. I am not going to use my name at all. When I move back to the US, and especially if I move back to NYC, I’m gonna try to use a Jewish person and their name and face for my accounting/tax preparation service company. The only person I know I could trust about my real intentions about this would be my Mom.

      Now all I’ll need is to create a lawful contract between me and the face/figurehead so that I don’t get ripped off big time…or small time.

      • AK,

        You said, “When I start my accounting/tax preparation service business I will definitely pay some white person to be the face, and possibly the name of it. I am not going to use my name at all. When I move back to the US, and especially if I move back to NYC, I’m gonna try to use a Jewish person and their name and face for my accounting/tax preparation service company. The only person I know I could trust about my real intentions about this would be my Mom.”

        Some unsolicited input from me {smile}:

        I believe that naming a firm after somebody else is probably going too far. It makes it easier for that person—who is supposed to only be an underling—to run off with your practice AFTER you’ve done the hard work of getting it firmly established. It’d be as dangerous as a lawyer naming their law firm after a law clerk.

        I would suggest that you consider an overall neutral, non-personal name for your firm, similar to how many investment management companies are named things like “The ____________ Group.” Pulling a name out of the air as an example—“The Capital Group.” This way, your firm has a neutral, colorless name. And the name isn’t automatically giving the keys away to the figurehead.

        You said, “Now all I’ll need is to create a lawful contract between me and the face/figurehead so that I don’t get ripped off big time…or small time.”

        I hope to talk more in depth about these sorts of “don’t give the keys away to the front person” angles in a future post (things like non-disclosure agreements, etc.).

        Expect Success!

        • ak says:

          Thanks for setting me straight Khadija and I do appreciate it. I did wonder a small bit about putting somebody else’s name on the firm/service, but I couldn’t put my finger on why I was ‘wondering’ about it. 🙂

          I just thought that if anything including someone else’s name that sounded white Christian/white Jewish, and any name that certainly doesn’t clue people in to knowing that the company is to do with me, would all be a good idea, but thank you for that fact!

        • AK,

          Oh, I don’t know about “setting anybody straight.” LOL! I’m just sharing my thoughts about various things. YOU know best about your own business ventures.

          Expect Success!

          • ak says:

            Oh I know Khadija, but I appreciate your input because you know the law, as the law is your profession and a part of your life. So I already understand that knowledge of the law, so that things in business work out in my favor is something that I cannot neglect regarding finding out information, creating contracts, and clauses for the contracts.

    • Truth P. says:

      What I don’t get is how blacks who come from majority black countries come to America and take on this same “slave crabs in a barrel”,won’t support black owned businesses,mentality?

      I won’t turn this into a vent session but I am perplexed by this behavior.It’s like history repeated itself.As soon as blacks got integrated and were allowed to buy from others they gave all their money to white folks.These black foreigners are beginning to do the same things.

      Anywho,I am thinking of going into computers as a side hustle.As a career I plan on going into
      the medical field,pharmacy (people need their meds),but i’d like to work on computers also.I am not the most computer literate person but my computer has crashed numerous times because of the kids downloading videogames, and trying to watch movies that are still in the theatre(SMH),and I have been able to fix it all by myself.Each time I was told by professionals that it’d take hundreds of dollars and lots of time to fix my computer and I’ve fixed it myself.I got a virus that was so awful that the computer literally
      would not turn on and I fixed it.I manage to fix my computer completely without the help of backup disks,nortons etc.
      I’d like to learn more and possibly create my own program to prevent crashes.

      I am going to continue to read up on computers and learn as much as I can.I figure i’ll also have to learn some things about running a business as well so i’ll be looking into taking some classes for that as well.

      So much to learn so little time.

      • ak says:

        Truth P.:

        What I don’t get is how blacks who come from majority black countries come to America and take on this same “slave crabs in a barrel”,won’t support black owned businesses,mentality?

        This all true too. Because British black people are lining everybody else’s pockets in Britain too, and I’ve seen how some black Caribbean people operate in th US sometimes.

        Some black people say that they’re afraid to hire a black person to move them, for construction/repair work, plumbing etc. because they’ve found black people that they’ve hired in the past to be unreliable and always late but….I don’t know.

        • Oshun/Aphrodite says:

          “Some black people say that they’re afraid to hire a black person to move them, for construction/repair work, plumbing etc. because they’ve found black people that they’ve hired in the past to be unreliable and always late but….I don’t know.”

          Now if you are dealing with a “jack leg/shade tree” then you can’t complain – thats how they operate and you are not paying full price. And my family has dealt with some on this level – but they did do good work.

          On the other hand I live in hicksville USA and I can say the same for a lot of white and mexican companies in this sector: plumbing, construction, moving, roofing, carpeting/flooring, painting, repairs – I can tell you some stories.

          Not that I am taking up for black folks -just that I have noticed shady behavior from folks in this industry across the board.

          But I wonder if that is because this line of work attracts a certain type of person.

      • ak says:

        Truth P.:

        I won’t turn this into a vent session but I am perplexed by this behavior.It’s like history repeated itself. As soon as blacks got integrated and were allowed to buy from others they gave all their money to white folks. These black foreigners are beginning to do the same things.

        Yet again, none of this makes any sense to me. Why did black people just have to give up on totally black owned businesses as soon as the worst of the Jim Crow troubles were over? At least in a black-owned shop a black person could shop with some dignity in the South, unlike when they went to a white peson’s shop and they had to wait until all the whites were served, and be called ‘gal’ and ‘boy’ all the time. Why would you rush to give all your money so readily back to that? Why is it only a ‘cult’ like Nation of Islam who ‘gets it’?

        [Khadija interjecting myself into this comment {smile}: Because shopping with Whites and other nonblacks feels like “freedom” and “progress.” AAs get an emotional high off of shopping in nonblack businesses. This is one of the unfortunate and unintended side-effects of how AA leaders framed the issues during the civil rights movement. I recall Dr. King talking about AAs “matriculating” into integration. As if being around nonblacks was some great honor that we had to carefully prepare ourselves for—it all reeked of an inferiority complex. Anyhoo, one result of all of this is that shopping with other Blacks feels like segregation to many AAs.]

        • SS says:

          When I lived in Trinidad it was a common practice for black West Indians to clamor to get into nightclubs that refused to let in blacks. The night clubs would only allow whites, rich Indians and very light skin blacks and maybe a token black. There would be long lines of blacks lined up wishing to be called upon to be the token black. They would boast to family and friends that they were allowed into club for eg. “Coconuts” and it would be seen as some sign of accomplishment. It was so disgusting and shameful. The clubs would gradually begin to let blacks in and when it became overrun with blacks it would cease to be the “it” club. Then mysteriously another club would be opened with the same restrictions and again the practice would repeat itself. The organizers knew the pathology of West Indian blacks so they knew that imposing racial restrictions was a good economic practice. It was snob appeal with a racial twist.

        • SS,

          I remember a nationally syndicated, activist-entrepreneur, Black talk radio host named Bob Law making the following observation:

          “If you as a nonblack business want to make sure you get Black folks’ money, just tell Black folks that you DON’T want them patronizing your business!

          Once you tell Black folks that you don’t want their money, then they’ll beat down the doors trying to force you to take their money.”

          A gentleman listener called in to second Mr. Law’s observation, and added that, “Blacks will then call the NAACP, the Urban League…whoever they have to call…to force racists to take their money.”

          I feel the same as that caller who went on to say, “I appreciate that nonblack business telling me they don’t want my money. I appreciate that because then I know to NEVER spend another dime with that business.”

          I remember this particular exchange because Bob Law’s show was like an oasis of sanity in the midst of the Black-oriented media desert of madness.

          I miss “Night Talk With Bob Law.” Like I said, his talk show was one of the few islands of consistently progressive and conscious thought. He was the only person I knew of during the 90s that was seriously talking about economic self-empowerment, food deserts in Black residential areas, toxic foods, the bad ideas that are being marketed to AAs through toxic radio and tv, and assorted other issues.

          It was from listening to his talk show that I first heard the terms “dead food” and “living food.” He frequently inteviewed guests like Queen Afua and Dr. Claud Anderson. He’s an activist that has always walked his talk, including his talk encouraging AAs to form their own businesses. See this article for some of the details. http://www.nydailynews.com/archives/ny_local/2005/02/04/2005-02-04_ex-radio_figure_reels_in_din.html

          Expect Success!

          • SS says:

            “Blacks will then call the NAACP, the Urban League…whoever they have to call…to force racists to take their money.”

            WOW!

            I remember at one time these idiots called upon the Prime Minister to force a particular club to let them in. The club owner refused and turned it into a private club that operated by invitation only.
            These discussions make me rethink all the notions I held about blacks operating successful businesses in Trinidad. We were always told that a small minority of whites controlled the banking industry and locked Trinidad blacks out of the business sector. I accepted this explanation without question when I was younger but it still troubled me that Chinese, Syrians and people of Indian descent were able to dominate the banking sector after say fifty years or so. How much did we contribute to our own position as being strictly a consumer class?

          • SS says:

            I think I will check out Bob’s place in NY lol.

        • Oshun/Aphrodite says:

          Not just the “dignity” angle, but what about the money angle? I guess they go hand in hand

          If you have 2 jars jar A and jar B and the contents of jar B are continually poured into jar A then B will eventually be empty.

          That is unsustainable over the long term.

          No wonder some black folks always hoovering near the poorhouse.

          [Khadija interjecting my reply into the comment: What I find amazing is that Blacks apparently don’t see the connection between their Nickel and Dime N.S., their Crabs In A Barrel Hateration of Black Business Owners AND their poverty. They all go hand in hand. As you said, Oshun, that mess is unsustainable over the long term. AAs have proven just how unsustainable this is over the decades since desegregation.]

          • Oshun/Aphrodite says:

            “[Khadija interjecting my reply into the comment: What I find amazing is that Blacks apparently don’t see the connection between their Nickel and Dime N.S., their Crabs In A Barrel Hateration of Black Business Owners AND their poverty. They all go hand in hand. As you said, Oshun, that mess is unsustainable over the long term. AAs have proven just how unsustainable this is over the decades since desegregation.]”

            I am seeing the underclass connections more clearly now – the mechanics of the how.

    • Miss V says:

      Hi Khadijah. I’ve been trying to figure out what my niche is, but I wanted to aim it at “allaourpeeples”. You’ve certainly changed my mind about that…Oh well, I just have to figure out something else.

      • Hello there, MissV,

        You said, “I’ve been trying to figure out what my niche is, but I wanted to aim it at “allaourpeeples”.

        I understand that thinking in terms of servicing one’s own group is the normal, reflex position that most people instinctively take. The problem is that AAs/Blacks overall are NOT normal in their consumer behaviors.

        Instead of behaving like normal consumers, when it comes to Black-owned businesses, Black consumers engage in Crabs In A Barrel-ism and Nickel & Dime N.S.

        You said, “You’ve certainly changed my mind about that…Oh well, I just have to figure out something else.”

        Well, for those Black folks who are hellbent on trying to serve other Blacks, go right ahead. I’m just giving the warning that by doing so, such Black business owners are making it extra hard on themselves AND significantly INCREASING the odds of their business failing. Any Black business owner who insists upon crippling their chances for success by doing this is perfectly free to do so. God respects free will, and so do I.

        I’m just publicly sounding the alarm about the dangers of making one’s business vulnerable to the whims of Black consumer crabs in a barrel. Very few people are willing to truthfully talk about these isses.

        I’m tired of watching each new batch of aspiring Black business owners blindly walk into a minefield of hateful, Black-Crabs-In-A-Barrel consumers. And watching their businesses unnecessarily fail (when they might have succeeded if they focused on being colorless and serving the mainstream).

        Expect Success!

  9. MsMellody says:

    Khadija!!

    If you only knew how much these conversations have helped me and enlightened me!!

    The conversations in the comments sections have been of such a help to me over these last few months, I just want to take the time this morning and tell everyone here THANK YOU.

    Thank you for sharing your insights and helping me see that what I had thought for years, my own observations and small insights were right on point. Just THANK YOU.

  10. Beverly says:

    Hey Khadija!

    I haven’t posted on this blog in a long time; but I feel it’s necessary to speak up as someone who has been in business full-time for the past four years. The following has been my experience:

    1. When the majority of my clients were black I had major issues. Clients wouldn’t pay, would pay late, and would end projects without paying. I lost EVERYTHING in the beginning of my business venture because I was dealing with black folks.

    2. When I focused my business towards white customers who have a proven track record of paying on time, I experienced huge success. I have noticed that there are many white businesses willing to do business with me over the long-term, unlike black businesses. (I have a business to business model)

    3. Black customers NEVER use my service over the long-term. They seem to hate commitment. They also always want a discount, which usually means they want me to work for free. I have even had black people tell me that if they had to pay for my services they might as well go with “insert white company here.” And no, I am not exaggerating.

    4 Finally, my reputation has grown a lot over the past four years; however, every black customer I have ever taken on has NEVER come back to do business with me twice. But I have white clients that I have worked with for 2 or more years. My white clients always come back to work with me and sign long-term contracts. Also, my black clients are ALWAYS complaining about something. But my white clients NEVER complain about my work. Mind you, this is over a four year stretch of experience.

    I have come to the realization that Black people really do not want to see other black people succeed in business. And at this point I refuse to work with other black people because they are problems. It makes me sad because I never imagined that I would need to exclude my own people. But I have to exclude them or I WILL NOT survive. This makes me very, very sad.

    • Hey there Beverly!

      I 100% cosign your comment and observations. I’ve watched the exact SAME behavior pattern with Black clients/customers over the years. And it doesn’t matter what economic class they belong to.

      Because the bottom line with Black consumers is as you described it when you said, “I have come to the realization that Black people really do not want to see other black people succeed in business.”

      All Black business owners need to get this reality through their heads. And STOP risking the survival of their businesses by dealing with AA consumers.

      It’s NOT worth it to deal with AA consumers. Not if a business owner is using their business to put food on their table.

      You said, “And at this point I refuse to work with other black people because they are problems. It makes me sad because I never imagined that I would need to exclude my own people. But I have to exclude them or I WILL NOT survive. This makes me very, very sad.”

      I’m not sad about it. I’m not sad because AA slave consumers have worked very, very hard to teach me (and other business owner like you) that lesson. Neither of us started off with the position of bypassing Black consumers. Black consumers showed us that this is what we MUST do if we want to put food on our tables with our businesses! It is what it is. Life goes on.

      Expect Success!

    • ak says:

      Beverly:

      I have come to the realization that Black people really do not want to see other black people succeed in business. And at this point I refuse to work with other black people because they are problems. It makes me sad because I never imagined that I would need to exclude my own people. But I have to exclude them or I WILL NOT survive. This makes me very, very sad.

      My own mother Beverly doesn’t even know about this blog, and even she has already said exactly what Khadija has been saying for a while now regarding black people and business. It doesn’t make me happy either that things have to be this way for us unlike the other groups of people on the earth. But the silver lining I see regarding this situation is when your business is ‘colorless’ you gain a broader customer base and more money, it shouldn’t be such a narrow profit margin obviously because you’re not marketing only towards blacks.

      And I’m not the type of person who needs to walk around my business beating my chest, and telling everyone that I’m in charge. The profits at the end of the day are all that I care about because that’s what will keep me afloat.

      Beverly:

      I have even had black people tell me that if they had to pay for my services they might as well go with “insert white company here.” And no, I am not exaggerating.

      I’ve heard black people who my mother and family know say this to me and my mother about how ‘I’m not paying (whatever it is) for that, if I’m gonna do that then I might as well go down to such and such’, and it’s even more face-ty that they have to say it to your face Beverly. They just don’t WANT to get that supporting the businesses of the people who look like them will offer up returns to them and the community at large in the future such as bringing up the property value and reputation of a community area, future job opportunities, and even opportunities to own a franchise. It’s like they don’t know what ‘expansion’ of a business can lead to. But it’s a waste of breath trying to talk to them if they’re just all jealous, envious, and resentful. And of course when they see a black person running something, everything always just becomes ‘too expensive’, but somehow magically nobody else is.

    • shocol says:

      3. Black customers NEVER use my service over the long-term. They seem to hate commitment. They also always want a discount, which usually means they want me to work for free. I have even had black people tell me that if they had to pay for my services they might as well go with “insert white company here.” And no, I am not exaggerating.

      I’m not a business owner but I have witnessed the whole discount/free thing among individual black people many times. If there’s a personal relationship, there is a risk of your item/situation becoming low priority. If it’s not urgent, ok, but usually there is time or money spent or some inconvenience to accommodate the fact that your situation is low priority.

      Another time, a friend of mine needed some work done on her home but didn’t have the money. She asked her boyfriend at the time, who did home remodeling for a living. Long story short, she purchased good materials, the boyfriend did a less than professional job. It would never have passed muster with his paying customers. He never knew that I would have recommended him to my mother if I had liked what he did at my friend’s home.

      In my experience, from a non-business owner perspective, the discounted/free route is often not worth the trouble.

  11. Evia says:

    Khadija, another angle on this is that if you’re a black woman who is married to a wm or somehow viewed by blacks as being connected with a white person, many blacks will be more likely to buy your product or service. They consider you or your item or service to be of quality or higher quality. LOL! I’ve experienced this a lot because my husband Darren sometimes goes with me to craft vending events to carry my items in and help me to set up. He usually stays around for a period of time during the event and/or comes back later to put things back in the truck. Blacks who see him with me at my stand believe that it’s HIS business and that I’m the secondary person or maybe an employee. They will come over and buy or simply out of curiosity when they see us relating to each other. When they discover that it’s MY business, they will still buy because they figure that since my husband is white, that has put the stamp of QUALITY on me and my items. This is one of the privileges of being married to a white man that I talked at length about in one of my Vetting Men podcasts. “White” carries a lot of value with black people. Also, his being white helps me to sell to white customers.

    I’ve also experienced that some blacks who know I’m married to a wm will TRUST me a lot more. They think that if a wm of his level married me, then I must be “exceptional” or honest or have other special qualities. LOL!!!! Not saying that this is the case in all cases of bw with wm, but Darren is obviously a middle class, educated wm and dresses, talks, and behaves like that. This is just one of those wm privileges that a bw shares when her mate is a middle class or higher wm. I don’t about the lower income bw-wm experience.

    Also, I know of a bw who went into the insurance business with her white girlfriend and they sell high-end insurance policies to medium-sized companies and institutions owned or headed by mostly whites and some non-blacks (Hispanics, Middle easterners, Asians, etc.). The white girlfriend is always the “face” person with these companies/institutions and the bw is the brain who no one ever sees. They’re still in business and they have done very well. When this bw was trying to run this business with her bm husband, they barely made any sales.

    So, you’re so on point with this topic! Blacks have a serious image problem, not only with non-blacks, but MAINLY with other blacks. Actually, if blacks could view each other more positively, it would greatly improve our image with non-blacks because we would be much more progressive and prosperous, but this is not going to happen anytime soon.

    • Evia,

      You said, “Khadija, another angle on this is that if you’re a black woman who is married to a wm or somehow viewed by blacks as being connected with a white person, many blacks will be more likely to buy your product or service. They consider you or your item or service to be of quality or higher quality. LOL! I’ve experienced this a lot because my husband Darren sometimes goes with me to craft vending events to carry my items in and help me to set up.

      . . . Blacks who see him with me at my stand believe that it’s HIS business and that I’m the secondary person or maybe an employee. They will come over and buy or simply out of curiosity when they see us relating to each other. When they discover that it’s MY business, they will still buy because they figure that since my husband is white, that has put the stamp of QUALITY on me and my items. This is one of the privileges of being married to a white man that I talked at length about in one of my Vetting Men podcasts. “White” carries a lot of value with black people. Also, his being white helps me to sell to white customers.”

      All of that is beyond ridiculous on the part of the AA slave consumers. I’m not as uptight about nonblacks doing this because it’s only natural for people to incline toward supporting their OWN ethnic and racial “teams.” Everybody else except AAs does this.

      So, I don’t blame non-AA consumers for being more inclined to support their own business people as opposed to AA business people. I blame AA slave consumers for being so sick with slave-based mentalities, envy, and hateration that they’re incapable of responding appropriately to any Black-owned business.

      Praise God, I’ve washed my hands of the vast majority of AA consumers with most of my income streams. Things run so much more smoothly without dealing with them or their crabs-in-a-barrel-based nonsense.

      Expect Success!

    • ak says:

      The same black people who equate white or white/upper middle-middle class with ‘best quality’ all the time are the same who accuse black people who surf, listen to Mozart, and eat only vegan of ‘acting white’ all the time. Priceless.

    • jubilee says:

      This is sad!! I can’t believe that our people have such a high inferiority complex. I knew of two men who wer black and lived in a ‘white area’ years ago. One was an insurance man and he did very well, him and his wife. Whites and other non blacks would buy insurance from him–the other black family did just as well; but when they tried to help ‘allaourpeople’ the business went down because the negros wanted something for ‘free’ and when they charged the same amount to everybody, they were badmouthed by them (it’s hard in believing that it’s still this way in 2010)

  12. joyousnerd says:

    Khadija *big hug* thank you so much, I will send an email to you as I value your thoughts on this topic very much. I appreciate your willingness to powwow on this with me!

    Oshun/Aphrodite: I am also a member of that forum. Do you know, one reason I have hesitated to pursue a profit-making venture about hair is because I was AFRAID of the blowback I would get from the hair forum!!! I have seen the progression you described over and over. I have now accepted the reality that I can’t really pursue my muse AND still keep posting there. Crazy, huh? Few of these women would buy my book, but they don’t hesitate to have me give them hair advice at great length… for free…which they then don’t follow!

    • JoyousNerd,

      You’re welcome!

      Expect Success!

    • Oshun/Aphrodite says:

      I can believe it and your concerns are valid. Perhaps you should stop giving the consultations for free. I know that I ignore requests like that just on general principle now because I kept getting my feelings hurt.

      I never went so far as to see if they were following the advice I gave, but it did make me angry that there would be 6-10 emails/private messages exchanged and I would sit and address every comment and issue – that takes a lot of time/research/effort (like you said) and then at the end I was junked like I was so much trash.

      Then there are the ones who want you to do everything for them – for ex one woman was too lazy to Google some products I told her about. She asked me what I was using and I gave her the names and she wanted me to give her a comprehensive list of online and offline resources in her area – and I don’t even live in her city/state.

      And don’t get me started on the fokti experience.

      It sucks because I really wanted the camaraderie/online community experience and I didn’t mind helping people. It was the way I was treated while/after helping people that upset me.

      Re: business
      On those hair boards I was like all that is not necessary. A legitimate complaint is one thing and I think any company/business will have a share of them – something will happen and you can’t please everybody and everything doesn’t fit for everyone, but the stuff they were talking about was malicious as all get out and designed to turn both present/future customers away from the company.

      • joyousnerd says:

        Oh, yes. I’m about to delete my blog page on the hair forum soon. No more freebies.

        Just last week a girl private messaged me to ask me clarifying questions about my methods, which I nicely explained even though I have posts explaining it, and multiple threads explaining it… so then she replies to tell me she doesn’t think my methods will work!!! Seriously!

        A. I have hip length hair for a reason, ma’am. The proof is in the pudding. That’s why you are blowing up my PM box to ask me how to grow some hair- for free.

        and B. If you doubt my methods then WHY are you harassing me to tell me that? Why not just keep your thoughts to yourself and leave me be?

        I have a zillion experiences like this, and I’m NOT going to do it anymore. I can see why posters go into lurk mode once they reach a certain length, and I’m just about there myself.

        I know that once I launch my product, I’m going to get e-banged into the next dimension. I’m going to be called everything but a child of god because I have the nerve to charge for my time and expertise.

        But you know what? It took me YEARS to develop this body of knowledge and experience. How many black women on earth (without dredlocks) have hip length hair, and grew it so quickly? How many know the proven way to grow it and retain it? One in a million maybe? Probably even fewer than 1 in a million. So my time invested, my knowledge and experience are WORTH the price I’m going to charge.

        In fact, I’m thinking about charging even more than I had originally planned. Premium paying customers actually present fewer gripes and drama than the bargain basement. If that means I sell fewer units, oh well. This is meant to be a sideline hustle that brings in some cash, without driving me to the insane asylum.

        • Zoopath says:

          *tapping my foot impatiently while waiting on aforementioned book/product* 🙂

          • joyousnerd says:

            Lol! Fear not, I am ON IT and am steadily moving forward. Before I officially come to market I want all my ducks in a row. I don’t want to “half step” and give customers poor value or bad service.

          • SS says:

            same here.

        • Oshun/Aphrodite says:

          In fact, I’m thinking about charging even more than I had originally planned. Premium paying customers actually present fewer gripes and drama than the bargain basement.

          This sounds like a good idea. 🙂
          to eliminate a certain clientele.

        • MsMellody says:

          *Ahem* MsMellody here, joining the chorus of foot tappin’ AWAITING the release of your product/book Oshun!!!

          Please let us know about your release date and updates concerning the book. I for one am WILLING and ABLE to pay the premium price. And you are right – I have found that when someone pays for information they are MUCH MORE likely to regard the information as VALUABLE.

  13. BronzeGirl says:

    Strange as it may seem my former DBRBM husband pleaded with me OVER and OVER again not to do business at ALL with blacks. He owned several businesses and always placed them in high income (white) areas. He had mostly white clientele and employees. He always told me that even his black employees were tardy, had bad attitudes, or even tell him how he needed to run his business. SMH

  14. IRockIRoll says:

    And BOOM. Another dead horse laid to rest. I’ve seen the “natural hair wars” and how many other AA women will PUT DOWN and try to destroy a BW’s business if it doesn’t comply to their specific standards… unless they CAN’T do without the product… unless it has to do with white people and THEIR businesses. In other words… just seeing the lay of the land cleared it up for me that any side projects needed to be as open as possible to the majority b/c once someone thought that you were too big for your britches, the more money you were making was seen as a threat to what THEY weren’t accomplishing and it went from a business stance to “mah girl is getting ahead of me and I don’t like it” stance in a q.u.i.c.k.n.e.s.s. Like she stole your homecoming crown or something.

    You know what I haven’t seen in all of the foaming at the mouth to expose black women-owned business stances and practices? These same women starting up on-line campaigns to bring down white owned businesses (regional, national, international) that use MUCH MORE nefarious practices! They are NOT trying to take down major companies. Instead of saying (or just not buying or giving out suggestions to improve b/c they WANT to support our communities (which are largely non-existent)), the online movement in the takedowns have mostly focused on BW building up home based businesses trying to serve… US! After seeing the outright vehemence directed towards some of those ladies, I realized that whatever business I build needs to be as broad-based as possible to attract a loyal clientele.

    • Oshun/Aphrodite says:

      “I’ve seen the “natural hair wars” and how many other AA women will PUT DOWN and try to destroy a BW’s business if it doesn’t comply to their specific standards…”

      And those standards are so questionable and arbitrary. They don’t make sense nowhere in this world or another one.

      The thing I hate are the so called business school grads who sit up and philosophize about the situation. Like um yeah someone on a shoestring budget in their basement is really able to implement JIT technology.

      “These same women starting up on-line campaigns to bring down white owned businesses (regional, national, international) that use MUCH MORE nefarious practices!”

      THIS! I am boycotting so many W companies because of this. I refuse to give my money to people who don’t respect me and some of the W companies are blatant about it.

      “the more money you were making was seen as a threat to what THEY weren’t accomplishing and it”

      I have been reading/watching some things by Dr. Andersen bc Khadija had mentioned him on this blog before and this thinking is so backwards. Instead of them getting in the process somewhere to help keep the money circulating within…it goes to make others rich.

      • YMB says:

        Dang. I had hoped that the natural hair chicks were more cohesive than that. I know, it was silly of me to think there would to think so. This weekend I finally checked out this new natural hair store that I’d learned about. They carried just about every black-owned natural hair line that I’d ever heard of and there was a 25% off coupon. I was dismayed to walk in and see it was the same AA consumer/Asian shop keeper dynamic. SMH. I just left.

        I can’t blame them for sweeping in and taking over the AA hair product market that we were so willing to just give away, but I can’t support them either. I will just keep on buying my products direct through the manufacturer’s websites or at Whole Foods.

      • YMB,

        Natural hair hasn’t been political since the 1960s-early 1970s. In the modern era, natural hair is nothing but a hairstyle. Think of all the slave-mentality BM who wear their hair in dreadlocks. Modern BW aren’t any different than the BM who wear dreadlocks. In the modern era:

        +Natural hair does NOT mean that the Black person with the natural hairstyle is proud of their racial heritage.

        +Natural hair does NOT mean that the Black person with the natural hairstyle is politically progressive.

        +Natural hair does NOT mean that the Black person with the natural hairstyle is an economically conscious consumer.

        +Natural hair does NOT mean that the Black person with the natural hairstyle is something other than a Crab In A Barrel type of Black person.

        +Natural hair does NOT mean that the Black person with the natural hairstyle refrains from being involved in N.S.

        +Natural hair does NOT mean that the Black person with the natural hairstyle has any affection or concern whatsoever for other Black people, the fate of the AA collective, or any other such interests.

        In short, natural hair has been NOTHING but a hairstyle to the Black people wearing natural hairstyles for the past 35-40 years.

        The Natural Hair Jihadi-Crusader Chicks talk a lot of faux political/consciousness mess, but in their actions they are the SAME in terms of consciousness as the Sheniquas with flaming pink and orange weaves.

        Expect Success!

        • ak says:

          Khadija:

          The Natural Hair Jihadi-Crusader Chicks talk a lot of faux political/consciousness mess, but in their actions they are the SAME in terms of consciousness as the Sheniquas with flaming pink and orange weaves.

          Yep, both cliques still worship at the altar of BM. The natural Hair Jihad (like Erykah Badu) think it’s acceptable to follow behind ‘conscious bruthas’ and man-share for him to have 15 kids between all of his women! Something like what Lauryn Hill has going on in her personal life… But they all end up living very ‘Maury Povich’ lives in the end!

        • foreverloyal says:

          I remember being dumbfounded at the tale of an AA woman who described her unfavorable treatment at an Asian-owned beauty supply. IIRC, they were even rude to her son.

          She finished up by saying she only gets 1 or 2 products from there (because she has a hard time getting them anywhere else)

          Different discussion, another woman recounted that she felt like she was being rudely discussed in their native language by the employees of a Korean nail salon. But of course she keeps going because they do a good job and the price is right.

          I was dumbfounded. I remember telling both of them that I’d be DARNED (you know the actual word I’d like to use) if I PAY someone to disrespect me.

          I can do my own nails and whip up my own hair butter at home. It’s not that serious, even if these WERE the only places to get these products/services.

          MuslimBushido/Sojourner’s Passport has been instrumental in weaving seemingly disparate threads together so I can see the whole cloth.

          It really is THAT bad.

          The truth will set you free… but first… it will make you sick…

          I’m done retching. Onward and Upward!

        • ForeverLoyal,

          You said, “The truth will set you free… but first… it will make you sick…”

          Guurl, you ain’t neva lied.

          You said, “MuslimBushido/Sojourner’s Passport has been instrumental in weaving seemingly disparate threads together so I can see the whole cloth.

          It really is THAT bad.”

          Yes, it is. Those of us who have some sense often forget that we are ATYPICAL among AAs. If most AAs were like us (refusing to shop where we’re disrespected, willing to offer reciprocity to other Blacks and support Black businesses, etc.), then conditions would NOT be what they are among the AA collective.

          We assume that most other AAs are thinking, living and behaving like us. No. They’re not. Not at all. If they were, they wouldn’t be doing the crazy, destructive things they do.

          Expect Success!

  15. a. says:

    Some of us forget Envy is still a sin.

  16. BronzeGirl,

    It sounds like your ex-husband knew the reality of how AAs act with other Blacks, and “recognized.”
    __________________________________________

    IRock IRoll,

    You said, ” In other words… just seeing the lay of the land cleared it up for me that any side projects needed to be as open as possible to the majority b/c once someone thought that you were too big for your britches, the more money you were making was seen as a threat to what THEY weren’t accomplishing and it went from a business stance to “mah girl is getting ahead of me and I don’t like it” stance in a q.u.i.c.k.n.e.s.s. Like she stole your homecoming crown or something.”

    Yep. The AA Hateration/Envy Cycle has a familiar pattern, as Oshun/Aphrodite described it: First, AAs pretend to be excited about some new Black-owned venture. Then, AAs start nitpicking and creating drama about the venture. Finally, the AA slaves work their fingers to the bone trying to destroy the venture. All while falsely claiming to want more Black businesses to exist.

    I’m watching a similar thing happen politically in my childhood neighborhood. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.’s wife, Sandi Jackson, was elected the Alderman of that ward a few years ago. She replaced a greasy, arrogant, old-school-pimp type of Negro politician who did NOTHING except watch that ward deteriorate for many years. Well, from what I can tell by talking to the Black business owners and seniors I know who live in that ward, Mrs. Jackson has been extremely responsive to her constituents. And has a variety of economic development projects in the works for that area.

    Despite all that she’s been doing—especially in the context of the years of malign neglect by the previous alderman—I’ve noticed a steadily growing murmur of hateration type comments about Ald. Jackson. At first, I couldn’t figure out what that hateration was about—after all, the woman IS doing for her constituents, MUCH more so than the fool she replaced in that office. Then, another patron at the hair salon explained it to me. As she explained, colored folks are hating on Ald. Jackson—despite all the things she’s been doing for THEM in that ward—because they’re envious of (and dislike) the Jackson family.

    My God. Talk about “cutting off your nose to spite your face.” The pathetic reality is that this AA Hateration/Envy Cycle is how AA slaves behave in general with other Blacks. I believe that those of us with sense need to shortcircuit that behavior pattern by washing our hands of AA crabs in a barrel. Stop trying to help the crabs—leave them in the barrel.
    ________________________________________

    A.,

    Yes, envy IS a sin. One that often leads to the destruction of the envier. Oh, well.

    Expect Success!

  17. mochachoc says:

    There is another dynamic I have observed. Some BP are tight, mean and do not value quality. This is why many of them continue to buy their groceries, hair and beauty products from the cheapest, smelliest, nasty shops. They’ll put up with the lack of respect, the dingy surroundings and even risk death to save a few pennies. And it is not because they cannot do better. I have seen BP pull up to a fast food outlet (restaurant? I don’t think so) in a BMW or some other fancy car with decked out fancy wheels to buy a £1.99 chicken and chips meal.

    • ak says:

      That’s what I’m saying. They penny-pinch and end up funding somebody else’s racism against them which is crazy, and it’s all because ‘that black shop’ is ‘too expensive’. They refuse to acknowledge the big picture and connect the dots of supporting black businesses. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

      Black people who always run to filthy, racist shops owned by whoever and think they’re getting bargains on items don’t even stop to think how each time they keep running to these shops that the amount of what they’re buying all adds up after a while. These people purposely sell their items cheaper than a nearby black-owned business does, because they know that the black people will just keep coming into their shops. But blacks refuse to see how it’s not worth it, and this is why Khadija is tired of talking to them about it because by now they should know how things really work.

    • Mochachoc,

      Oh yeah. I call that behavior the “nickel and dime N.S.” It’s ridiculous, and it’s part of why Black folks remain monolithically on the bottom. You can’t nickel and dime your way into abundance. But again, I say let them keep on with it. I wash my hands of such individuals.

      Expect Success!

    • Oshun/Aphrodite says:

      This is interesting because they charge a negro a pretty penny in my neck of the woods to be treated like crap. I have found the few times I have been in some of these foreign stores mostly with other people – the prices are ridiculous. I would not pay what they pay for rotting unhealthy meat/food and Chinese knock off products. And the contempt on top of that.

      • ak says:

        Exactlly Oshun. I’ve been in some of these foreign corner shops in NYC when I used to live there and the food in there especially on the top shelves all had an inch of dust covering them, and I saw grey-to-black meat in their deli counter in one of these shops that had been in there since the 80s.

  18. joyousnerd says:

    Khadija thanks for facilitating this conversation. I love how you give it to us straight- no chaser! Leave the pussyfooting around to someone else.

    Can we talk about the crippling self-doubt and fear that starting your own venture entails?

    Last night I nearly had a full on panic attack, and had to talk myself down, all because I saw a similar product to mine for sale. I had to remind myself that in the US we have 12 brands of toilet paper and none of those cats at Charmin or Cottonelle are starving! And my product is superior anyway. I had to go through and think of all the idiotic products that sold millions, like that dumb singing fish. I had to remind myself that all I need to hit my goal is XX sales per week… and my demographic is getting bigger every day.

    I was feeling stressed over not doing everything perfectly and I visualized myself as a successful tycoon laughing over my small mistakes along my road to BIG success.

    I can’t be the only one suffering with this emotional rollercoaster, can I?

    • JoyousNerd,

      You’re welcome! No, you’re not the only one dealing with the entrepreneur’s emotional rollercoaster. {smile} I just keep in mind the many examples of everyday people that have gotten ahead; and I keep plugging along. I also read the blogs written by such folks to help stay motivated.

      Expect Success!

    • Karen says:

      I have been self-employed a while now. The key is to believe in your abilities and to keep moving forward.

      Yes, there will be ups and downs along with making adjustments/corrections but the conviction to move forward must never falter.

  19. Evelyn says:

    Mochachoc said:

    There is another dynamic I have observed. Some BP are tight, mean and do not value quality. This is why many of them continue to buy their groceries, hair and beauty products from the cheapest, smelliest, nasty shops. They’ll put up with the lack of respect, the dingy surroundings and even risk death to save a few pennies. And it is not because they cannot do better. I have seen BP pull up to a fast food outlet (restaurant? I don’t think so) in a BMW or some other fancy car with decked out fancy wheels to buy a £1.99 chicken and chips meal.

    1000% CO-SIGN! I’ve noticed this, too, for the majority of AAs the golden rule seems to be “(free) quantity before quality” in every aspect of consumer purchasing. The ONLY exceptions for paying up is when we’re buying cars, as you stated. I’d venture to add:
    – the latest Nike series
    – House of Derreon/Rockawear anything
    – jewelry
    but for those things it’s full price only if you can’t get it wholesale from Bay-Bay down the street (who for some odd reason, always seems to know a new someone who was around when a UPS delivery truck capsized in the neighborhood and “emptied” out its brand-new stock). SMH

  20. Faith says:

    Allstate has a Minority & Women Emerging Entrepeneurs program affiliated with a specific university to help people continue to develop their companies. I’m mentioning it here because there has to be similar programs across the country aside from what the SBA and SCORE offer. If this is a model there has to be others.
    http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=250060342088

  21. Evelyn,

    Yep, that’s insane. {also shaking my head}
    ___________________________________________

    Faith,

    Thanks for the info!
    ___________________________________________

    AK,

    I’m sorry—I accidentally deleted your comment. Oops!

    Expect Success!

  22. ***Note to Readers***

    In making this new site the kind of project that’s sustainable for me over the long-run, I’ve had to streamline how I handle certain things. The comments section is one of them. What this means is that I’ll give substantive responses to those folks who enter the conversations early (as I did across the board at the previous blog).

    After each post is a couple of days old, I’ll generally continue to publish new comments from readers. (That meet the commenting guidelines as set forth at the previous blog—those who are unfamiliar can read the comment “box” at the previous blog.)

    But, after a each post is a couple of days old, I generally WON’T continue responding to new comments.

    In other words, I’ll continue to publish comments to this post, but I’m not going to reply to any more comments in this thread. FYI. Please feel free to talk among yourselves!

    Expect Success!