Someone is going to find ways to pick up the pieces and put the world back together again. Someone with vision and tireless entrepreneurial spirit is going to identify the products and services that will make a positive difference in people’s lives and innovate profitable ways to deliver them. So decide now if that someone is going to be you. If so, then make sure that everything you do from now on–be it academic or part-time employment or even recreational–puts you one step closer to your goal.
Finally, keep in mind that this current downturn will end, but you need to do more than sit and wait for it to do so. Leadership begins when you decide to shape your environment rather than letting it shape you. As you look forward and assess the obstacles you face, it will be hard not to succumb to discouragement. Don’t.
Remember that an African American was elected president of the United States–something I never expected to see in my lifetime. Now, it’s time to participate in the change we all seek by bringing your energy and ideas to the table. I want to challenge all the entrepreneurs and future entrepreneurs out there to march on. Black Enterprise has reached its 40-year milestone because we have endeavored to serve an audience that is always changing, always searching for the uncharted path for financial success and empowerment.
We could pat ourselves on the back for what we’ve achieved, and maybe we’ve done a little of that in this, our 40th anniversary issue. The truth of the matter, though, is that we are humbled by the achievements of the talented people we report on. We are in awe, still, by the courage it takes to put oneself on the line in an unmerciful marketplace.
During the past four decades, we’ve seen giant careers spring from the most modest beginnings. And that’s why I know that great things are in store for many of you who hold in your hands this landmark issue of black enterprise magazine, or who are reading these words on BlackEnterprise.com, on your social media profile or on your iPad.
I urge you to take the mantle of past achievers and run with it. And remember—you do not run this race alone. black enterprise will be with you every step of the way.