Numerous people will probably agree with me when I say 2020 has been a year of uncertainty. Countless people lost their jobs when the world went into a pandemic due to COVID-19. When cities and states started locking down, some people didn’t know where their next income source would come from; as a result, many developed their own businesses. People invested their money into stocks, bonds, startups, and investments that allowed the dollar to increase. Several African Americans have been motivated to start their own business in light of the pandemic.
Guidant Financial is a small business financing company that recently surveyed 3,100 African American entrepreneurs. The purpose of the survey was to understand the current trends in the black-owned industries. According to this year’s results alone, 34 percent of African American entrepreneurs were ready to step out and become their own boss. 29.5 percent of African Americans wanted to pursue their passion, while 13 percent lost hope in corporate America. Due to the multiple layoffs, 5 percent of those surveyed felt compelled to start their own business while another 5 percent started a business in 2020 because they were not ready to retire. Only 4 percent of the people surveyed experienced a life-changing event that motivated them to become their own boss.
COVID-19 and unemployment rates are not the only extreme life-changing events that pushed several African Americans to pursue entrepreneurship. There is a lot of injustice in America when it comes to the African American population. However, the recent police brutality incidents towards George Floyd and Breonna Taylor and the killing of Ahmaud Arbery sparked Real Estate agent Ashley Scott and 19 other families to purchase 96.71 acres of property in Toomsboro, Georgia (CNN). According to research, the families want to develop the property into a safe haven for the black community. This new town will be Freedom, Georgia, a place where there is economic power and healing from racial trauma. The 19 families aspire to create a flourishing place where the black dollar circulates and build wealth within the community for generations to come. This new black town will house agriculture and commercial businesses that will support one another and thrive. 2020’s life-changing events prompted several people to think about their community and how they can change and make them more powerful. Several black businesses have been developed and restructured in 2020 to benefit organizations, individuals, and families in so many different ways.
Several black entrepreneurs are on my social media timeline, and I believe it’s incredible because we have always been movers and shakers. The need and want for transformation has empowered so many people. For example, I asked a friend why she is starting her own business, and she stated she wanted to have more control in the workplace. Another established entrepreneur said she cherished working for herself and making her own schedule. Her income is untapped and not limited; working for herself also allows her to stay at home with her 2-year-old. When states ordered the public to stay home, except essential workers, several people I know had the time to focus on themselves and learn something new. Some even had the chance to pursue a passion and turn it into passive income. Growing up and throughout college, I’ve heard people state the best way to increase your finances is to have multiple income streams.
When there is will power, motivation, and resources, one can pursue their passion and aspirations. Having uncertainty is not a good feeling and several people, including myself, tend to go into survival mode by coming up with a plan that will keep money flowing. Sometimes it takes life-changing events to push someone to the next level.