New Professional Voice – Melinda of Her Image : an empowerment, educational, and networking organization founded by black women. The purpose of this episode is to ask black business owners if they feel supported by their community and understand what WE can do as consumers to make the word “support” actually mean SUPPORT. But guess what, it isn’t as simple as purchasing goods or services. Soo….You’d have to listen as Melinda gives you all the details. You’ll find that support is a two way street … Be sure to reference to the show’s notes at TheSatinBonnet.com/HerImageNetworking and to also visit Herimage.org.
Do Black Businesses feel supported?
Her Image does! BUT the trio of organization leaders (Dee, Michelle, and Melinda) didn’t get that support by just sitting pretty and black. We’ll get to that later… However, according to Melinda, whose been an entrepreneur for six years and counting, the rest of the black business community lacks this support and I personally agree. But why aren’t BOBs supported? Well, here’s a couple of reasons from the episode :
… We ALL as black people play a very important role in that. We, as business owners, are the reason why we don’t get support and we, as people, are the reason why black business owners don’t get support….
- In the midst of gaining equality, we’re still different. Black businesses are being bashed because of racial stereotypes and not just from the people on the outside, but form one another due to internalized racism. “As black consumers, we weren’t really shown that we can be professional, that we can be respected, that we can be business owners….” This is so true! The internalized racism is so real, we don’t even look at ourselves with respect… Yet alone as individuals with the capacity of running a business that you can trust with your time and money.
- Entrepreneurs play a role as well. Because the financial odds aren’t in our favor like non-POC, we can unintentionally start businesses that “aren’t ready”. Of course that leads to an overall quality that doesn’t match our competitors with the privileged of building generational wealth across the Euro-American demographic.
(Listen & Subcribe for more)
But how can the overall support improve?
Melinda offered many powerful words and advice. Here’s some from the show, plus a little:
- Decolonize your mind! Recognize the interalized racism that’s keeping you in the belief that black people cannot be professionals.
- Being a part of a team. Network.. Network… Network! If you need more advice on networking specifically contact Her Image.
- Social Media – Don’t just post. Interact!