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ARE SMALL BLACK BUSINESS OWNERS STRUGGLING IN THEIR OWN NEIGHBORHOODS? (2015 hits)

Small Blacks Enterprises spring up in their own neighborhoods and often times they have tough time staying. Do you think it's more of a struggle to stay afloat in their own neighborhoods?
Posted By: MIISRAEL Bride
Wednesday, July 14th 2010 at 10:11AM
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I'm for supporting Black businessess, and as much as possible. But I always hear people complain about how they feel as though they are being cheated when it comes to supporting their own kind. Another complaint I hear about with Blacks doing business with each other is that the term "Black" is often a turn off to many consumers including other Black people. It's almost as bad as saying you're gonna support White and Chinese businesses. To them it sounds corny and and bit racist.

I agree we will do better when we begin to love ourselves. We can do this by making sure that we have exhausted all our Black resources (locally and online) before shopping elsewhere.
Wednesday, July 14th 2010 at 11:09AM
Siebra Muhammad
Misrael, I think part of it is some of these businesses spring up in areas where there is just not the income to support them at the time. The other issue is, are these businesses that provide an essential service that people will support even in lean times?

For example, not too far from where I live there is a strip mall. This mall is anchored by a grocery store that caters to mostly blacks and Hispanics. In the mall were several businesses, including a sporting goods store, a religious book store, a Laundromat, a clothing store, a cell phone store and a taco house, among others. Most are either black or Hispanic owned. Over the last year all of these businesses have suffered. The religious book and sporting goods businesses, both black owned, went under. The clothing store was forced to cut costs and moved to a smaller location. The grocery store, cell phone store and taco house are thriving.

The takeaway from that is this:

1. Consumers, regardless of “color” will support businesses that provide an essential service. Often times the businesses that survive do so simply because they are providing products and/or services that. Businesses that survive in black communities do so because they are providing an essential service.

2. Black business owners need to do better planning. Sometimes, your dream may not be right for the time you want to implement it and the location you would like to do it at.

One of common mistakes I see made by black entrepreneurs is a lack of proper planning. You have to do extensive research in terms of the location, tax base of the surrounding areas, similar business and needs. You have to be able to reasonably estimate that the income is there to support your business. In the example above, a sporting goods store at that location was bad timing. People simply did not have the money to support it in these lean times. Same with the religious bookstore. Also, bookstores have a lot of competition now from electronic media that is often free.

Too often proper planning is not done and then we hear, “black people don’t support us.” But they didn’t plan properly. No business should be undertaken without doing a five year business plan to show how the business will be profitable within that time. The process of creating this plan itself is a good exercise for anyone thinking about opening a business because it will tell you if your idea is sound and its chances of success.

In the experience if this strip mall, and others, I don’t think black folk much care who’s on the other side of the counter as long as they can get what they need at a fair price. And if they can do this in their own neighborhood, all the better.

Wednesday, July 14th 2010 at 12:05PM
Siebra and Clark you both are right on target with your comments. This is also useful in finding ways to improve Black enterprises. Great info! I'm somewhat a small entrepreneur and I work in a small percentage of my neighborhood. It's vital I have some good information before I advance. I'm considering options which is why I'm collecting advice and some data. Thanks too!
Wednesday, July 14th 2010 at 5:24PM
MIISRAEL Bride
SET UP A FOOD BANK LETS START SENDING HELP !
Thursday, August 26th 2010 at 10:47PM
DAVID JOHNSON
Yes for two reasons .1 . No support and 2 hiring of individuals who are there just to get a check in their establishments.
Monday, November 22nd 2010 at 10:04PM
Kenneth Meyer
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