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WANT A SUCCESSFUL BUSINESS? START WITH A SELF-ANALYSIS.

Owning your own business, it’s the American dream, right? After all when we think of business ownership we also think of being our own boss, financial independence and having the opportunity to make a difference in our communities. For the Black business owners, this is also an opportunity to close the wealth and social gaps that exist.

Of course as the old saying goes, “To whom much is given, much is required.” Owning your own business is certainly a testament to that statement, because it takes a whole lot to succeed in entrepreneurship. So what’s your plan for success? Whether you are a business owner or an aspiring entrepreneur, how do you plan to make it work? Success is not easy. It’s a lot of hard work, frustration, sweat and tears (hopefully more tears of joy than sorrow!).  That doesn’t mean that you can’t succeed in business. People do it every day.

I have met and talked with a lot of people, who want to do a lot–whether it’s a for profit, a nonprofit or some type of other venture. For many would-be business owners, it’s not about the willingness or the desire. It’s about sifting through all the good ideas and focusing on a single idea in order to turn it into a great business. However, due to fear or feelings of being behind the power curve, many people fail to take the time to really map out a plan. They know what they want, but have no idea of how it will really look. They have an idea, but no real vision, because there is no plan in place. So instead of making forward progress, they spend a great deal of time and mental stamina wishing and hoping…

As simple and cliché as this may sound–success really is in the plan. Not just your business plan, either. You have to really know what it is that you want in business and life personally.

What are your values?

You know what they say, “If don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” This is just as true in business as it is in life. Taking the time to first determine what is most important to you now, will go a long way when it comes time to make tough business decisions–and believe me, they will come!

 What are your goals?

What do you want to achieve in life? Whether it’s to be a billionaire or to just retire debt free, our life goals help to shape our business goals. Beware–the more you want, the more you will have to work to achieve those goals.

What obstacles must you overcome to reach your goals?

Bad credit, lack of capital or lack of knowledge are all realities of life that can be obstacles to starting a business, but they don’t have to be show stoppers. In fact, short of death, there isn’t much that can prevent a great idea from becoming a successful reality. The objective is to identify your obstacles and figure out the best way to overcome them. Don’t be afraid to seek help.

What are you willing to sacrifice to get there?

The road to success is not an easy one. That whole “given-required” thing I mentioned earlier… that will constantly come knocking. To achieve success in business you will surely be required to sacrifice something. Whether it’s choosing between mindless time online, spending time with family or investing a few extra hours in your business, having taken the time to establish your values and priorities, will serve you well at this point.

Are you willing to do what it takes to get to your mountain top?

Turning your dreams into a reality requires a lot. In most cases, small business owners are a team of one. That means, it all boils down to YOU–sales, accounting, business development… you are the business.  There is no one to tell you what to do (by the way, that’s part of why you’re taking this journey).

The journey to entrepreneurship is as tough as it is rewarding. Black business owners face the same challenges as any other business, in addition to the social and economic obstacles presented to much of the Black community. However, it can be overcome by investing the time in some self analysis and applying it to a plan that works best for you.

So are you willing to do what it takes?

We want to hear from you! Do you have your own business? Share your ‘recipe for success’ with the MYBB community in the comments section.

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Louiseza Sanderson

Louiseza Sanderson

Louiseza Sanderson is a business consultant, writer and the founder of www.MindYourBlackBusiness.com. She is also a veteran of the United States Air Force. It was during her time in the military that she learned the value of hard work, community and serving the needs of others. Following her military service she earned a bachelor's degree in business and an MBA in business communications.

She began consulting with the explicit goal of providing affordable business consultation and guidance to those who might not otherwise have access. "I started consulting by 'inherent accident'. I've spent my whole life gathering information, in hopes that it would benefit someone," says Sanderson. When it comes to working with her clients, she believes that the key is to find the human factor. By doing so, she helps her clients to find the best solution for their business, by first figuring out what is best for the person. Her hope is to help such entrepreneurs, small businesses and non-profits who share her vision of giving back-- be it through job creation, innovation or a cause.

As a consultant and business owner herself, Sanderson came to realize that while there are many resources for small business owners, there were very few that provided a platform for micro and small Black owned businesses, as well as the information germane to them. These are the mom and pops, solo-preneurs and other businesses and organizations that are really the heart and soul of the local (Black) community. She shares, "The vision of Mind Your Black Business is the culmination of what I am most passionate about and what I do best--helping others to achieve their dreams and helping small businesses grow."

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