8 Inspiring books by – and for – Black entrepreneurs
In honor of Black History Month, here are some books written by Black entrepreneurs. They advise, inspire, and encourage at any stage of the process – whether you’re thinking about starting a business, ready to take the plunge, or trying to sustain or expand an existing business.
“All high achievers make choices, not excuses,” says Dennis P. Kimbro, PhD, author of What Makes the Great Great. In this inspirational book, Kimbro shares the inspirational stories of Black leaders like John H. Johnson, publisher of Ebony magazine, Ann Fudge, former chairman and CEO of Young & Rubicam Brands, and Condoleeza Rice, former U.S. Secretary of State.
Kimbro also wrote Think and Grow Rich – A Black Choice, Wealth Choice – Success Secrets of Black Millionaires, Daily Motivations for African American Success, and What Keeps Me Standing.
Learn how to wield influence
Powershift: Transform Any Situation, Close Any Deal, and Achieve Any Outcome is the latest book from entrepreneur Daymond John. John shows you how to master influence (by making an impression), negotiation (by making win-win deals, and relationships (by nurturing the connections you make along the way). This will lay the groundwork, so you’re prepared to seize every opportunity that comes your way.
John is the founder and CEO of FUBU, a $6 billion global and lifestyle brand, a star of ABC’s Shark Tank, and a bestselling author. John’s other books include The Brand Within; Display of Power; The Power of Broke: How Empty Pockets, a Tight Budget, and a Hunger for Success Can Become Your Greatest Competitive Advantage, and Rise and Grind: Outperform, Outwork, and Outhustle Your Way to a More Successful and Rewarding Life.
Get your questions answered
Black Business Secrets: 500 Tips, Strategies, and Resources for the African American Entrepreneur by Dante Lee addresses the questions every business owner needs to ask. Lee is the president and CEO of Diversity City Media, which includes BlackNews.com, BlackStudents.com, and BlackPR.com, and is co-founder of Lee Moss Media, whose social networking properties attract over two million Black visitors each month. Preaching determination and perseverance, Lee says, “Don’t be a worrier – be a warrior.”
Learn how to change
Strategize to Win: The New Way to Start Out, Step Up, or Start Over in Your Career by Carla A. Harris provides tools for change, whether you’re an entrepreneur looking for new opportunities or an employee looking to get ‘unstuck’ from a situation that’s not working anymore. Readers learn how to identify and optimize their work profile, prepare for a career change, hone the skills necessary to be a leader, thrive through change, and more. Harris shares her experiences to help others learn to recover from setbacks, move forward, and position themselves for success.
Achieve your dreams
Heart and Hustle: Use your passion. Build your brand. Achieve your dreams by Patricia Bright, who owns one of the fastest-growing lifestyle YouTube channels in the UK.
Prepare for success
Black Entrepreneur Survival Guide: The complete guide to becoming a successful African American entrepreneur by Dunneille Anderson provides insight into the specific struggles and opportunities faced by Black entrepreneurs as they start their business and build their brand. This book is a must-read for those considering starting a business, as it provides actionable advice on how to get to where you want to be.
Black Enterprise Guide to Starting Your Own Business by Wendy Beech is a reference tool for Black entrepreneurs that guides you through the process of defining your idea, researching the industry and competitors, addressing legal issues, choosing a location, financing, advertising and more. It includes the stories of Black entrepreneurs who overcame obstacles and are now successful business owners.
Curtis Jackson, more popularly known as rap artist 50 Cent, wrote Hustle Harder, Hustle Smarter about coming back from personal tragedy to become a successful businessman and cable TVs highest-paid executive. After achieving success in the music business, he became the executive producer and star of Power, a crime drama about a drug kingpin and his family, which resulted in Jackson signing a $150 million contract with Starz network.
Jackson provides advice borne from his street smarts and business acumen, and admits that, “I’ve absolutely failed as many times as I’ve succeeded.” But he acknowledges, “The goal is not just to be successful. It’s about learning how to sustain that success.”