How to go beyond buying and truly support Black-owned businesses, according to 4 Black entrepreneurs
The world is changing — and we are no longer talking about COVID-19. In fact, there's a much bigger problem to be solved here: the issue of systemic racism and America's violent history of oppressing the Black community. The good news, however, is that the conversation and the movement are gaining traction in unprecedented ways, and supporters' voices are rising to meet the volume of Black outcry.
Over the past few weeks, allies have been asking how they can support Black-owned businesses and Black entrepreneurs. And while the lists going around of companies to support and buy from are a positive start, they're not enough to drive real change. Not even close.
"Supporting us means seeing us as equals and experts and not assuming our skills, services, and creations are less than, which has been the common narrative when discussing supporting Black ideas, creativity, and business," explained Christina Blacken, founder and chief story strategist at The New Quo, a professional development and communication consultancy that helps leaders tap into the psychological power of narrative intelligence and storytelling to achieve inclusive, status quo breaking goals. "Black creators have built movements, companies, and more with little to nothing despite the odds, and there's wisdom that can be learned from that."
Bianca Maxwell, founder at Skinary, a digital health company that uses data to understand and track skin health and provide recommendations, via an app from home, agrees. "My ancestors accomplished more with less," she said. "It fuels me when the odds are down, and it's cause for a louder celebration when the odds are up."