Many of the problems we face as African Americans are partially rooted in the decline of spirituality and moral responsibility in our communities. Our faith historically has carried us through many trials and tribulations. This is why my wife, Barbara, and I felt it important that our son Earl “Butch” Graves’ appointment to CEO of Earl G. Graves Ltd. earlier this year be marked by a special observance during a Sunday morning service at Rev. W. Franklyn Richardson’s Grace Baptist Church in Mount Vernon, New York. We cannot compete in business or any other aspect of society if we are not spiritually fit.
I believe that when truly successful businesspeople (and entrepreneurs, in particular) routinely see solutions when everyone else sees only problems and remain focused on the goal and not the obstacles, they are tapping into and demonstrating their faith. Not all of us are overt about our spiritual beliefs. And while some of us were spiritually committed early in our business lives, others have come to rely on our faith over time, by virtue of our life experiences-moments of shining victory as well as of dark despair.
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