be enjoying the fruits of my labor, but I’m certainly better off than I used to be,'” Wallace explains. “There are certain things that we have that are of value, and we must learn to appreciate those things. If we don’t, we will never be able to leverage them [toward our success]. Many of us have assets, but because we don’t appreciate them, we lose the power to leverage them.”
What makes being an entrepreneur successful is understanding the gift that makes him or her special. “What is it that you bring to society and to humanity that is so valuable that society is willing to pay you money to offer that service and gift? Every single one of us has that gift; the problem is that most folks don’t know what that gift is, nor are they searching for it.”
Wallace says having this sense of gratitude and understanding of how you fit into the universe helps you navigate your business through the dry seasons and manage it during the fruitful ones.
“After all, business is a cycle,” he says. “Business has its ups and its downs. You’re successful; you’re a failure. You make money; you lose money. Business is a cycle. The challenge is managing yourself and your business through the cycles, so that when you’re riding high — or riding low — your perspective and your management approach to your business remains the same.”
So while many of our captains have set sail aboard their businesses, Wallace hopes the lighthouse within his book will keep them from getting caught in the powerful riptides and undercurrents of our nation’s economy.
From Soul Food: 52 Principles for Black Entrepreneurial Success by Robert L. Wallace (Perseus Publishing). © 2000 by Robert L. Wallace. Reprinted by permission of the writer.