Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Entrepreneurial vs Consumer Mentalities

The owner and CEO of multi-million dollar clothing 
brand FUBU started his company  
sewing caps in his mother's kitchen. 

Intellectuals in the Black community have often expressed the need for members of the African American community to start their own businesses and engage in group economics.  Small businesses create income opportunity and decrease our dependence on others to give us jobs. In competing against large corporations, one is emboldened by ample access to many internet venues which help to level the playing field. A small operation is often more able to provide better customer service with a more personal approach to doing business. An added benefit is the lowered financial risk of an online business. You need not invest a large sum of money nor quit your day job while starting up.

Every year the fashion industry cranks out tons of foreign, mass-produced, inexpensive clothing.  Finding a niche within a saturated market is often the key to making a living in any business. To develop an entrepreneurial mind you must think outside the box.

Someone with a consumer mentality would say:
 "Why go to the trouble of making a durag when I can just get one online for about $2.00?"

An entrepreneurial mentality studies a market, he finds where his product might be needed or desired and he thinks (for example):    
  • "I could get my friend Alice to sew up a few blank durags. Then I will paint my tattoo designs on them and offer them for sale at the swap meet."
  • "This basic durag pattern needs a little adjustment so I can sew a hat onto the top. That will keep people from losing their sunhats in the wind when they are at the beach.
  •  "Maybe that new cafeteria on the corner would like to buy some of these durags with their logo on it for their cooks and waiters to look really sharp."
  • "I should offer these for sale online to people who are looking for a nice gift for a friend who likes gardening or cooking, maybe I could add a matching apron."
  • "I can improve this durag pattern and sell a different version."
  • "The community center may like me to teach a class on how to sew a durag."
  • "I'm going to use a different fabric than the one suggested in the pattern instructions. I need one with more elasticity." 
Aaron Henry saw a market for his product and invented the Tsurag,  Inventor Oladele Levi Adejare actually decided to patent his durag. Perhaps he is looking for an associate to market his idea to the public. The owner and CEO of the multi-million dollar clothing brand FUBU started his company sewing caps in his mother's kitchen in the mornings while waiting tables nights at Red Lobster.

Check out one consumer who decided to turn her love for nails into a business:  Stay Ready Studio in Houston, Texas.

(Disclosure: Craftsy is compensating PetitPoix for some of the business generated by this blog. i.e new subscribers or enrollment in craftsy.com online craft classes. )                 

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