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Originally Posted by EbonyRose:
 
 
Originally Posted by nuggyt:

Your 60%+ of black people in poverty is utter bullshit. If you're gonna lie, do it further down in your rant.  You wasted all those words because I stopped right there. 

 

I had truly hoped you weren't gonna say something (else) stupid.

 

My bad.

Stupid??? Back up your stats dumbass. 

As long as we have to go to the DOMINANT culture for our very existence, we're OPPRESSED.  We are not AMERICANS.  We were BORN in AMERICA.  We're AFRICANS with some very flucked-up bloodlines.  That's what we are.  These Europeans DO NOT accept us as AMERICANS.  That's why our intelligent, handsome, articulate president is experiencing all these problems with these fluckers.  He surely has as much on the ball as all the rest of the presidents of this country, if not MORESO.  I've seen damn near all 43 of the previous ones along with their wives, and in my opinion there's absolutely no comparison.  We're not ruled by Africans, we're rules by Europe's crazy azz rejects.  They were really an insane gang when they came here, slaughtering and shooting people like there was no tomorrow.  Do we not know where we are and what we've been up against for these 5 to 6 centuries?  Damn!!

Originally Posted by sunnubian:
  We also need those with knowledge of how to get all of the free money that the Federal Government doles out, to make this information privy to African American entrepreneurs, and those that want to establish non-profit organizations that are beneficial to the community, as well as those interested in the education and well-being of our children. 

After 5 years of trying to get my transcription business off the ground (mostly due to a LOT of procrastination and not being SERIOUS enough about it to take the time and do what I needed to do!!) .... there are a few things I can say about the prospect of starting your own business!! 

 

First and foremost ... no, it's NOT easy!!  But ... it's certainly not the extremely difficult or impossible task that most people THINK it will be (which is probably the #1 reason why most don't even try!) either!!

 

Three things you need to know most if you decide to go into your own business are:

 

1.  Choose something you love or are good at!  It gives you 90% of the incentive you need to make it happen!!

 

2.  You NEED to write a business plan!  This is probably the MOST INVOLVED (and hardest) part of the whole process.  You HAVE to put your ideas down on paper.  But ... whereas most people think they don't know enough about the business to write a good plan ... or they don't know how/where to start writing it ... the thing is ... you don't HAVE to know ALL those things when you start!   In fact, that is the whole purpose of the "plan" itself!!  Is so that you can (and will) do the research, ask the right people, find a mentor, get the answers ..... to ALL your questions by the time you are finished.

 

To begin the process of STARTING a business ... all you have to do is find a business plan model (either by Google or on the (new and improved!) SBA website!) ... fill in the parts you DO know the answer to ... delete those sections that don't apply to your business (because most models are generic/one-size-fits-all and depending on the size and scope of your enterprise ... you may only need 3-4 sections, like I did!!).  And then, once you start writing, a LOT of your questions and the answers will just start to come to you!

 

I worked on my business plan for 3 years before I got serious about it.  Then I was able to complete it (enough to submit to a banker .. 'cause it's STILL a work-in-progress to me!) in about 3 months.

 

3.  Be serious and thorough about how much money you will need to get started.  Then ... figure out the best way to obtain those funds. This is the part that scares people the most, but .. again, depending on the size and scope of the business ... you may ALREADY have the money you need to get started!! (Savings, friends, family, line of credit).  If not ... you may not need to ask for that much from a lender ... and you'd be surprised how many are willing to work with you if you have a good, well-written business plan in hand!

 

If you're going for something BIG, though (like a store or a factory or an import/export business or contracting with the government) ... first, you'd be surprised how many OTHER people are thinking the same thing!  So, your idea is NOT something lenders haven't heard before or aren't willing to fund!

 

But secondly ... and MOST IMPORTANTLY .. if you are looking for BIG money ... you WILL need to have good/decent credit!  And if you don't have it now ... don't despair ... 'cause you CAN get it, reasonably easy, if you start now and do the right (financial) things!  (Like cutting up 7 of your 10 credit cards! )

 

Also, one of the MOST SURPRISING things I found out about obtaining business loans is that even MORE important than having great credit ... is having a source of income, period!!  When I started out, I wasn't working - 'cause I wanted to devote ALL my time to starting my business!  But .. I was DENIED three times ... ONLY because I didn't have a job!!    My credit is mediocre at best.  But ... I was told that even if I had applied while I was on unemployment .. they would have better considered (and probably approved) approving my loan request!! 

 

I thought that was STUPID .. and told more than one banker that!!  But .. that's the way it was.  And once I showed an income ... I was good to go!

 

The government is NOT giving out free money for starting businesses!  In fact, one the biggest MYTHS is that the government gives/loans out money for businesses AT ALL!!    The government merely guarantees loans for startup businesses that other lending institutions approve!!  However ... banks are NOT the only, nor best, sources of business loan funding!!  There are a lot of non-profit organizations, community banks and credit unions that are MUCH MORE likely to fund you than one of those big commercial banks!!

 

And speaking of NON-PROFITS!! Non-profits are probably the HARDEST businesses/enterprises to start!!  You have to be VERY thorough about your intended plans!!  A LOT of research is necessary.  And writing a GRANT proposal is much, MUCH HARDER than writing a business plan!!   In fact, most people pay somebody else to do it for them!!  And that ain't cheap, either!!

 

However ... most often ... those "grants" ARE free money given away by the government!!    And the requested amounts are generally in the tens- or hundreds- of thousands of dollars!!  But ... for most people ... what's NOT a for-profit financial award ... is generally received as a moral, just or heartwarming reward for helping take care of people who really need it!!

 

The government is also giving away a lot of "free" money for returning to SCHOOL and re-training or career change!  All you have to do for that is go to a school/community college/college and discuss it with a counselor.  Depending on what you want to take, a government pell grant may pay for ALL of the tuition for that course!

 

For ANYONE even THINKING about the idea of starting their own business ... I would STRONGLY, very, very STRONGLY recommend AND encourage you go to the SBA (Small Business Association) website and click around to get pretty much all the information you need to get started!! President Obama COMPLETELY revamped the site and made it VERY easy, informative and interactive to answer questions .. connect with a mentor (a business coach who will walk you through the entire process!) ... watch videos .. take quizzes .. and help you decide on what's the best business for you!!  It's really an amazing place to surf through these days!!

 

And lastly ... I would say ... DON'T BE AFRAID of the idea of starting your OWN business!!    It's not NEARLY as scary ... and much more doable ... than most people think!   If you have an idea, skill or talent ... you can more than likely turn it into a self-employment or non-profit prospect!

 

Just know that it DOES take time!!  It won't happen overnight ... if you do it right!!  but ... 6 months or a year from now ... you can be VERY happy being your OWN boss!!    And that's the truth!! So .... GO FOR IT!!

Last edited by EbonyRose

  My sista!!  You are one SMART cookie.  You are correct in everything you have said.  Going into business for yourself is HARD work and you do have to have a passion.  And nonprofits are the hardest to fund and you really have to KNOW what you are doing cuz you will get a lot of "no"s from grantmakers.  I guess I am burned out.  I've had a few businesses along the way.  I used to have a record company back in the day.  Hold up!  It was just me and a couple of people.  I wasn't Motown.  I did it for the kids cuz I didn't want anyone ripping them off with so-called record deals but I got tooooooo busy with teaching that I realized I couldn't do both so I let it slide.    And after my son's death, I create another business having to do with gravesites.  I used to pay kids to go to the cemetry to put flowers on graves and clean them so they can see for themselves the senseless murders of teens their age.  And one of my so-called friends tried to steal the business [it was getting popular] and it folded cuz I wasn't gonna fight her.  I just let her have it and in less than a few months, she was outta business.  Cuz "I" was the driving force of the company but she stabbed me in the back and thought she could do it on her own and found out she couldn't-I've had a lot of folks over the years who tried to steal ideas from me....especially women. 

 

I mean I've had my toes in a lotta things other than working with children through the years.  But as I said earlier I am BURNT out.  I am retiring sooon and I cannot wait!  But you are definitely on the money with all the information you are conveying.  And in order to open a business, form a nonprofit....you have to be dedicated all the way through....and you also have to ride the high waves with the low waves.....and most importantly you have to have passion.  Without it...it would be just a waste of time.....and money.  But! 

Well, I have ALWAYS had a love for typing!  And fresh out of high school ... all there was was a typewriter!!  On my "final exam" I tested at 75 words-per-minute!  I always had a "secretary" job when I wanted it ... bossesloved how fast I could get out the work!!

 

And I always did typing "on the side" no matter what office I was working at!!  Most of them were law offices ... and lawyer ALWAYS needed a lot of typing.  But, it wasn't until about 10 years ago that I thought about doing it for MYSELF ... and not having to work for lawyers (as an employee)... but making them have to PAY me anyway!! 

 

I've been 'on my own," mostly doing "referral" work ... where I've split a percentage of the total job with the office that "referred" the job to me.  But, now, I'm cutting out the 'middle man' and finding my OWN clients .. and working for myself!!

 

Unlike MOST businesses ... I'm doing something where I DON'T have to work HARD!!    And that was one of my criteria when I decided to do this!!  A few clients pay me very well ... and I don't have to take "whatever comes through the door."  I can't pick-and-choose who I work for and how much work I take!

 

However .... choosing the RIGHT business is VITALLY important!!  If, like me, you don't want to work hard ... or be working all the time ... then you shouldn't choose something like opening a store ... or something where you need to attract a LOT of business to be successful or make a lot of money!

 

This transcription business is NOT where I plan to make my "millions."    But ... with it, I CAN make enough money to start my next venture .... which will be real estate investing! (Another job where I won't have to work "hard" to make money!!).

 

But .... for those that don't mind ... the options are endless!!  I have a cousin who got a government grant and started a daycare center where she takes "vouchers" from the state given to women on public assistance who get them so that they can go to work.  Her brother obtained a loan to buy mobile homes .... which he put on a 10-acre plot of land he bought (dirt cheap ... and in the middle of nowhere!!!)  a few miles from Prairie View A&M ... and he rents them out to students (who usually split the rent between 3-4 of them living together, the way college students do!).  He paid off his loan within !3 years!  And now, everything he makes is "gravy"!  He uses the extra money now to run a goat farm!! 

 

I'm trying to convince one of my BFFs to quit her job and start a business sewing ... which is a hobby/love of hers!  And she also likes to cook!  However ... she's trying to decide if she really feels like doing what it will take to try to SELL the stuff she makes!  She sews mostly African prints ... and does a lot of baby clothes or blankets or doll clothing - specialty stuff!!  It would mean going to festivals and/or boutiques and really working hard to find customers ... and it's not something with automatic "repeat customers" that will buy every day or ever week or even every month!!  So, it would mean attracting different people all the time!

 

And she's right not to get into it ... if she's really not prepared to :go all out" the way she would have to be really successful!

 

Although self-employed Black entrepreneurs were the fastest growing sector of new businesses BEFORE the financial crash ... it's true that most of those "businesses" do not have "employees"!!!  And these days ... it's easier to get a loan if you're entering a business that will HIRE other people!!

 

I know TWO men who recently started landscaping/gardening businesses ... and they, themselves, don't get out there cutting grass ... they have hired other Black men who actually do the job!  However ... as owners, they DO have to be salesmen and try to drum up new business!!   They had to learn how to handle payroll .... and things like insurance and buy a lot of equipment!  But BOTH of their businesses have GROWN since they first started!  And they're helping other people have JOBS to supporttheir families.  And both say that it's all been worth it ... and they're GLAD they took the plunge!

 

Starting a business may SEEM like you're looking over a CLIFF ... but, with the right planning and help ... it can be more like "walking on Cloud Nine"!!!

  Each and every time I realize that you and I have sooooooo much in common.  I think it's our generation which makes us a jack of most trades. Kids today  don't  have that.  Unfortunately, all most of 'em want to be is some kind of celebrity-all in 24 hours!  No prep time.  No experience.  No planning.  Just want it YESTERDAY.  Our generation, however, was motivated to do and know as much as possible cuz you NEVER know what you may need as back-up. Don't eveything in one basket.   And I truly call this mindset "critical thinking" which this newer generation lacks.   And..this is why many  baby boomers are sooooo successful with their retirement and other ventures after the empty nest and why they have managed to set the stage for those after us to really think about their future after employment ..however, the way things are going with celebrities broke after the highlight of their careers...I can only imagine what they could have been thinking after allllll the users/managers/assistants/attorneys left the room when they RAN out of money.  It's a sad sight. 

 

I have NEVER been impressed with bling.  Or fancy cars and luxious big homes-nawl.  Cuz I know it takes big money to keep that up.  I will say there are a few black celebrities who have invested in other things to keep their money rolling...but!  It still appears that they are very SELFISH with it and wanna hoard it all to themselves.  And they can cuz it's their money.....but!  All money is not good money and one day they will realize that you have to give give give to receive receive what I call quality living.  Cuz really...it feels GOOD to help others as you help yourself.   And when you can do that....you NEVER have to worry about losing or keeping a job.   But!  

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