The Andersonsâ€™ experiment has also paid off for the entrepreneurs whose stores they patronize. More and more people have started visiting the grocer, cleaners, and shoe store they mention in their blog: www.theempowermentexperiment.blogspot.com.
Those who donâ€™t understand the Andersonsâ€™ aims often view it as discriminating against nonblack business owners. â€śWe try to make it a point to explain that this experiment is an academic exercise. We are not being exclusionary and we are not advocating that all black people do this [forever],â€ť says John, a Harvard University graduate with an M.B.A. from Northwestern University who works as a financial consultant at In Sight Financial Management in Oak Brook, Illinois.
â€śWe do need the support of our communities in order to sustain [our businesses],â€ť says Joslyn Slaughter, co-owner of Jordanâ€™s Closets with her mother and 8-year-old daughter, Jordan. â€śThere are some very viable black businesses in our communities, and we offer goods and services that can compete with other stores.â€ť
WEALTH FOR LIFE PRINCIPLES
1. I Will Live Within My Means
2. I Will Maximize My Income Potential Through Education and Training
3. I Will Effectively Manage My Budget, Credit, Debt, and Tax Obligations
4. I Will Save At Least 10% of My Income
5. I Will Use Homeownership as a Foundation For Building Wealth
6. I Will Devise An Investment Plan For My Retirement Needs And Childrensâ€™ Education
7. I Will Ensure That My Entire Family Adheres To Sensible Money Management Principles
8. I Will Support the Creation and Growth of Minority-Owned Businesses
9. I Will Guarantee My Wealth Is Passed On To Future Generations Through Proper Insurance And Estate Planning
10. I Will Strengthen My Community Through Philanthropy
This article originally appeared in the September 2009 issue of Black Enterprise magazine.