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TAKE YOUR GIFT TO THE NEXT LEVEL

Happy New Year! I anticipate this year, you are standing in the state of expectation working the gift that God has given to you. This is the last article relating to the series, The Gift that Keeps on Giving. We started the process by identifying the gift that we believed the Lord gave us as a means to financial stability. Then we shared the vision with people we trusted in anticipation that they would align with our call and support us in any way possible. Finally, it was critical that we began to work on the practical aspects of a new business. That would include establishing a business, opening a bank account, finding a mentor, and just moving forward with a plan of action.

Now it’s weeks later and you may have a very serious concern. How do you get the word out that you are now an entrepreneur? People can’t take advantage of your services or purchase your products unless they know you are in business. So here are some practical ways to get started marketing and promoting your business.

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SAVE MONEY BY TELECOMMUTING

Gas prices are on the rise, and for the next 6 or so months I don't see a slow down.  The reasons behind that are debated over and that is not the focus of this article.  I am here to advocate for more telecommuting options in the workplace.  Before you all get up in arms about the need for face to face interactions, I am not talking about a 100% solution here more so a 3-4 day work week.  Most office professionals chit-chat for between one to three hours a day, and that is an observation of mine and by no means corroborated by any metrics.  I think there needs to be a movement to partial remote work in the near future in an effort to increase productivity and avoid office distractions.

 The personal computer is quite powerful and only getting better with every new year.  For heaven's sake, we can deliver PowerPoint presentations from our cell phones now!  It makes no sense to me why salesmen and executives are the only people allowed to work remotely.  The same systems that are in place to handle their remote needs can service the majority of the other workers in a company.  For instance, most knowledge workers like programmers and the like don't need to be in an office every day.  The only conceivable reason for this would be to justify a manager's role in the office.  I would like to contend that an effective manager can "manage" remote workers as well as traditional in-office workers.

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AN AFRICAN-AMERICAN WOMAN CHARTER A BANK?

The first woman to charter a bank in the United States was an African-American woman!

An African-American woman whose mother was a former slave and whose father is said to have been an Irish immigrant.

Maggie Lena Walker, who began working as a child, helping her mother wash clothes in an alleyway in Richmond, Virginia; was the first woman, black or white, to launch a financial institution for African-Americans.  She overcame not only the oppression of the racist Jim Crow Era, but even defeated the prevalent sexism of the day that purposefully excluded women as viable economic forces.

This African-American visionary was often quoted as saying, , "Let us put our money together; let us use our money; Let us put our money out at usury among ourselves, and reap the benefit ourselves."  

She practiced what she preached by only employing African-Americans within a variety of roles from butler to architect throughout her life.  Walker note only owned a bank, but she established a newspaper, The St. Luke Herald, in 1902, and served as one of the national leaders for the St. Luke’s fraternal burial society, which supported the sick and elderly within the African-American community before social security or welfare programs were established.

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