As members of the BOB Facebook group, daily we partake in conversations regarding the potential power of a united black economy. We all are well aware of the purchasing power blacks exhibit yearly as consumers, which is in the 1,000,000,000,000 range. That is a lot of zeros but those zeros are also representative of the economic power blacks let escape from their communities year after year.
Consumers... that is all black people as a whole are represented as when it comes to being players in the overall economy. We can spend all our disposable income on Jordans, Louis Vuitton, an expensive mortgage and car loans. When it comes to investing though; we view that as too risky, we don't understand the concept or say it's the white man's game. These are foolish beliefs which are passed down through generations that work to keep us held captive as a community. Unfortunately, the collective mindset has not been developed to invest in economic development, only to spend in order to impress others with material possessions. We fuel the demand side on the economic scale but sorely lack when it comes to actively participating on the supply side.
So how do we get the black community to realize the great amount of power they have within their possession? It is not like this information is a secret. It is widely circulated on YouTube, various websites, black radio, etc. Egrassroots is a good start but even most who sign up to the site want overnight success and get frustrated when that does not occur. Most don't seem to understand that entrepreneurship is a process as is economic development. There has to be planning in place, a well thought out strategy and effective execution inplace in order to succeed. Also, the long-term outlook has to be more relevant than the short-term anticipation.
Therefore, with this understanding of people's shortsighted outlook, how do we continue to develop Egrassroots into the powerful engine that shifts the overall economic mindset of the black community?
This is a complex answer that can be expounded upon in great detail. Where it will all begin at is with great local leadership. Local leaders in each city that preach about black economics and demonstrate the capabilities of a united black community that is in charge of their economic power. These leaders will be in charge of developing other leaders under them who are themselves in charge of producing their own following; while all teaching the same united message. This will be a multiplier effect that begins to take root and shift the perception of the "lack of control" the black community is in possession of. There is no such thing as a lack of control. What is lacking is accountability, focus and an united mindset directed towards economic empowerment.
Will this be a tough initiative? Yes, due to the fact that the current mindset that plagues our community is entrenched deeply in our thinking. With each success that is produced though, we provide an example of what economic empowerment can do for you individually and as a community. This will slowly begin to erode the negative perception blacks hold about their communities and bring forth a new mindset focused on exponential growth.
Are you ready to play your part in achieving this vision?