An interesting article was released earlier this month by Black Enterprise involving Roz Gee’s attendance at the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Summit.  At the Summit many esteemed people spoke including Warren Buffet, Michael Bloomberg, and (per this article) Tyler Perry.

As a self made black millionaire, I am always intrigued with the stories and lessons of those successful entrepreneurs that look like me.  According to Gee, Perry told the story of his father who “was a subcontractor who built houses making about $800 per week. Young Perry soon realized that the guy who owned the house would turn around and profit $80,000 from that same home. He knew then, “I wanted to be the guy who owned the house.””

During Perry’s speech key nuggets were mentioned that Gee explains through her article.  Of them, the key takeaways included:

  1. Write things down:  The first play was scripted when he was around 18 or 19-years-old, although he didn’t know it was a play at the time. One day he was watching The Oprah Winfrey Show and she expressed that it was cathartic to write things down. He took heed and started assigning characters to some of his stories, and his destiny started to take shape.
  2. Understand your audience: [Perry] saved $12,000 and moved to Atlanta to invest it all into his first play: I Know I Have Been Changed. After a difficult time attracting an audience, Perry dedicated himself to learning how to identify, target, magnetize, and attract an audience.
  3. Find your niche: According to Perry, if social media existed during those lean years of 1993 until 1998, when he had an email list of a few million people, he could have sold out of shows without any advertisement. Today, with the proliferation of platforms, it’s easy to get fragmented if not careful. But if you focus on a concentrated market or niche, you’ll be in good shape.
  4. Don’t quit: Sometimes the closest people around you will fail to support you. Some are trying to protect and shield you from disappointment. It genuinely could be coming from a place of love, to keep you from the pain of repeated failure.
  5. Build a strong team: According to Perry, it’s critically important that you have a good team in place to achieve your dreams. Furthermore, it’s extremely challenging to identify and formulate a good team


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