When you seek the wisdom of others, you develop your own. Learn from your peers. Find a mentor, and be one, too. The best way to learn is to teach. Find strength in numbers. Surround yourself with people who share your perspective, affirm your values, and support your goals. Cultivate an inner circle whose members are all comfortable with each other, trust each other, and watch out for each other. The key isn't necessarily ethnicity, but compatibility. Think and act intrapreneurially. Apply an entrepreneurial mindset within an established organization to effect institutional change.
Black Faces in White Places: 10 Game-Changing Strategies to Achieve Success and Find Greatness [Randal D. Pinkett, Jeffrey A. Robinson, Philana Patterson]. Black Faces in White Places: 10 Game-Changing Strategies to Achieve Success and Find Greatness eBook: Randal D. Pinkett, Jeffrey A. Robinson, Philana.
You must maintain a strong sense of self-determination and work within the system to make a big impact. Think and act entrepreneurially.
You must take control of your career; you must dare to be in the driver's seat of your destiny; and you must be in a position to pursue your economic prosperity. The entrepreneurial mindset of passion, creativity, resourcefulness, courage, and resilience is mandatory for success in the twenty-first century. Work outside the system to build wealth for yourself and the community as a whole. Synergize and reach scale.
To redefine the game you must create mutually beneficial connections between people and between organizations to fulfill their collective purpose -- and then amplify their collaborative actions to have the broadest or deepest possible impact in a way that levels the playing field for everyone. Give back generously. Each and every one of us represents the continuation of a countless number of legacies and we can blaze trails for others to follow.
Today, African-American giving is no longer only about survival or even helping each other; it is about empowerment and collective self-determination. To address the many challenges in our community, we must leverage our combined efforts through organizations and businesses to reach as many people as possible. Randal Pinkett, Ph. Pinkett is based in Somerset, New Jersey. For more information please visit www. Jeffrey Robinson, Ph.
click here Subscribe to Our Free Newsletter Enter your primary email address. The ever-changing game applies to any competitive environment where the rules are differentially applied and subject to change. Unlike the glass ceiling, the ever-changing game is something we encounter from grade school to graduate school and from the classroom to the boardroom. It applies to employees and entrepreneurs, high school students and graduate students, as well as professionals, politicians, and professors.
The twentieth-century glass ceiling conjured the associated metaphor of the ladder.
The game and the playing field are appropriate metaphors for anyone aspiring to reach the top of their field, not only those who aspire to reach the C-suite, but also those who aspire to become school principals, head nurses, nonprofit executive directors, or reach other career heights, since they too are in the midst of a competition whether they realize it or not.
In , 19 percent of Black adults, age 25 and older, had completed college; it was only 4 percent in We are represented at every level of business, academia, corporate America, nonprofit organizations, and government, including the presidency.
The growth of new African-American businesses at 6. In , the Black poverty rate was three times greater than the white poverty rate, according to a study from the Pew Research Center. Based on the rate of change since , it will take years to close the gap.
Black homeownership rose from 42 percent in to 48 percent in , while white homeownership climbed from 65 percent to 75 percent in the same period Pew study again. At that rate, it would take a staggering 1, years or fifty-five generations to eliminate this gulf. For years, African Americans have passed down conventional wisdom that they must work twice as hard as their white counterparts and they must go to school—preferably to a good college—and make good grades.
Working hard and getting an education or training are cornerstones of success for any race of people. Our communities and our country cannot afford to wait. It is more than just a numbers game and being the only person of color in a predominantly white environment. It is more than being subjected to racism and discrimination based on the color of your skin. The experience of being Black while pursuing such a path may raise issues along four dimensions see Figure I—1 : identity, meritocracy, society, and opportunity.
The foundation of personal identity is often your ethnic and cultural background.
Are you African American or Caribbean American? Were you, or your parents, born in Africa? Is one of your parents white, Latino, or Asian? Are you working toward becoming or already working as a lawyer, doctor, professor, graphic artist, or software developer?
Often our career aspirations shape our interests and social groups—even how we dress.
Perhaps you find yourself in environments where jeans and polo shirts are the norm, even at the highest levels of your profession. Another element is how you think of yourself. Are you a founder of, say, a business or a community group? You could be an activist—working to organize people in communities to fight for social change.
Or perhaps you think of yourself as a trailblazer. Maybe you are the first Caribbean American to have earned a degree in a particular field or to develop a technical process. The four dimensions of Black faces in white places.
Well, not so fast. Written and performed by Kirk Franklin. Excellent Customer Service. It is an arduous road to get there. We see this expression as referring to two phenomena. The latter represented a world I desperately wanted to connect with at a deeper level despite limited interactions with Black peers in my hometown. We will treat your email with utmost respect.
Is race important to me because it is central to who I am or because I am defined by it in society? There are many examples of these questions of identity. Am I the manager who happens to be Black or the Black manager? Am I the Black professor or the professor who happens to be Black?
Who do I want to be and how do I want to be treated by others?
This is where the first dimension of being a Black face in a white place, identity, intersects with questions about meritocracy, society, and opportunity. Instead, we ask ourselves: How do people view me? Are the decision makers evaluating me based on my education, skills, character, and performance, or on the color of my skin?
In the days leading up to The Apprentice finale, there were hints that Trump might throw a curveball. However, it was also clear that Randal still faced an uphill battle despite his standout performance on the show. At the second to last episode, when it was clear that Randal and Rebecca Jarvis were the finalists, an NBC poll showed that 81 percent of respondents thought Randal should win. And many of his competitors—about nine of them—joined Randal for dinner the day before the live finale.
Much of the conversation that evening centered on how unacceptable it would be if Trump decided on a double hiring. We jumped into action, meeting with several friends to strategize how Randal should respond to Trump in the event of a double hiring—or if he hired Randal and then consulted him on how to handle Jarvis. If Trump insisted, Randal would stick to his guns and settle for nothing less than being the sole winner, or else he would quit! But even then, Randal was only able to enjoy his victory for so long.