This week on The Urban Business Roundtable, UBR Executive Producer TaQuoya Kennedy speaks with Sheila Moss-Brown, creator of the board game Authenticity, about what it takes to bring a new and unconventional product idea to market.
Authenticity is a traditional board game on an unconventional topic–honesty in romance–played with directional cards divided up into seven categories that impact relationships ranging from Family and Actions to Sex & Romance and Finance. Moss-Brown shares how she developed the concept for the game and how she transformed an idea into a viable product.
“Approximately 80% came from my own experience; 10% from my friends’ experiences; and 10% from listening to TV, radio and strangers,” says Moss-Brown, explaining her inspiration for Authenticity in a recent interview with Black Enterprise. “Because the game was created from my own personal need, research was a reflection of my life… I did, however, consult with a few close friends on questions they wish they had asked or could have asked of their mate. After I created a prototype I used a test market to play the game and give feedback.”
Also on this week’s edition of The Urban Business Roundtable, contributor Renita Young speaks with Terry Barber, the creator of a consumer-centric survey of the most inspiring companies in America. Barber, the author of The Inspiration Factor, explains how boosting your company’s “inspirational DNA” can have bottom line results by energizing your employees and motivating your customers to becoming enthusiastic evangelists of your products, services and mission.
In my “Alfred’s Notepad” commentary, I explain why a business plan without a profitability plan is like a race car with no engine–it may look fast, but it can’t go anywhere but downhill. In order to achieve sustained success as an entrepreneur, you must be able to clearly and succinctly state, in a couple of sentences, your business concept or profitability plan, also known as “how you turn a buck.” Without it, you could be among the many entrepreneurs who have launched a business without a clear plan to turn a profit and make money.
In fact, your business concept should be easily expressed as your elevator pitch, quickly and clearly explaining the money-making potential of your business. There’s still time to put your business concept to the test by entering the 2011 Black Enterprise Elevator Pitch Competition. Finalists for the competition will earn the chance to deliver their pitch live at the Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference for a chance to win prizes, including $10,000 in capital for the best business pitch. The deadline for contest entries is March 31, 2011.
In addition, every week on UBR, you’ll get motivation and inspiration from author and entrepreneurial icon Farrah Gray, a weekly wrap-up of business news from USA Today Business Correspondent Charisse Jones, our Patient Investor Report from Ariel Investments and key economic intelligence for small business owners from our UBR Economists Derrick Collins and Rasheed Carter.
If you have a question you want answered or a topic you want addressed on The Urban Business Roundtable, send me an e-mail at email@example.com or connect with me at BE Insider, the social media network for people who are serious about Black Enterprise. You can also find me on Twitter and Facebook.
Alfred Edmond Jr. is the senior VP/editor-at-large of Black Enterprise and the host of the Urban Business Roundtable, a weekly radio show, sponsored by Ariel Investments, airing CST Wednesdays at 8:30 a.m., Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 9:30 a.m. on WVON-AM 1690, the Talk of Chicago. You can also listen live online at WVON.com. Check back each Wednesday for The UBR Morning Post, which features additional resources, advice and information from and about the topics, entrepreneurs and experts featured on the show.