Why do Black business need to fail?
By Aunkh Aakhu
Did you know that the average business start-up invests about $10,000 to start? Did you know that most business start-ups, some 80 percent fail in the first year?
If you are a Black business the failure number escalates and yet the rate at which Black people are going into business is now three times the national average across the board. Which means there is a lot of people taking their last bit of savings and maybe money from friends and family to start a business, who are going to simply throw that money away. So what exactly happens to the money that is invested in business if a business fails? Do the good people you bought stuff from in an effort to make money return your money once you failed? You guessed it. No chance in this lifetime.
So here’s a parallel to perhaps see this closer. Most people have the potential to fly a plane, but they are not crazy enough to jump behind the wheel of an aircraft thinking that with will power and positive thinking alone they could take off and land safely. Money is a game that has proven as dangerous as flying in many ways. Most business owners go down in a hail of smoke and their dreams of financial freedom often go down with them too. It does not take a genius to figure that in order to secure certain skills it requires specialized training. Flying is easy when you are well trained; it’s a disaster if you are not. Business is very similar in that regard and part of the challenge for many Black businesses is not just where do I get the specialized training I need to succeed, but it’s how do I realize that specialized training is the missing ingredient in my success recipe.
Black people are an outstanding consumer population. Our behavior pattern suggests we love spending money….not saving, not investing it. We love spending with folks who do not care about us, our families, or our communities. This makes us ripe prey even as we try to become producers or business owners.
Thus we have consumers trying to be business owners by exhibiting consumeristic behavior, believing the more I spend on things like location, technology etc. the more I will make. As such we become the prey of the companies who quickly mail us their stuff to buy the minute you register your business, and then it’s off to the races.
Fourteen million businesses start every year with an average investment of $10,000. 80 percent of them fail. Business failure is 110 billion dollar a year industry, and Black businesses are disproportionately and negatively impacted. Our fantasies about getting rich are making other people’s dreams come true. Our approach must then change. We need to learn how to become producers but not at the expense of our communities. Specialized knowledge for us by us is a must!