photo credit: cliff1066™
Inc.com identified its Top Ten Black Entrepreneurs today. Read it. Black Entrepreneurs don’t get covered in the mainstream press very often. When they do it’s often condescending and twee. ‘Didn’t he do well!’ Which brings us to Kobe Bryant.
Kobe Bryant visited Shanghai when I was there. He was mobbed. But what was unusual about his visit, compared to say Michael Phelps for example, was that on paper he wouldn’t be such as star. In China, colored folks have a hard time and that’s an understatement.
So, why was Bryant embraced so warmly?
Going the Extra Yard
I mentioned Michael Phelps. He’s been to China many times after his Olympic success. But, he seems to endure rather than appreciate it. His interviews are tedious at best.
You can also see his watching the clock. ‘How much longer?’
He was very curt in an interview with CCTV (Chinese National TV) and they haven’t forgotten it, I feel.
No-one misses him when he’s gone.
Kobe goes the extra yard.
He tries to speak a little Chinese. He tries, says a few words, and enjoys the ribbing he gets from the kids. But, he’s trying. You can tell he likes the place. And he’s a smart guy.
He’s planting seeds.
Be a Farmer, Learn to Harvest
His career won’t last forever. When it trails off, he’ll still be welcome in Japan, Hong Kong, and China. Lots of options for a smart, young businessman.
You can learn a lot from guys like Kobe. He’s had his knockers since day one. I remember his first season as a pro. They were running him down even then.
‘He’s no Michael Jordan, you know!’
They’re right, of course. Because he later defined his own path on his own terms.
That’s why I’d encourage you to read this week’s edition of Inc. It profiles 10 black entrepreneurs. I don’t know all their stories. But, I’m sure they had to overcome hurdles most of us don’t.
You can draw inspiration from these success stories. Maybe you won’t get to run a $100 million company like some of theses folks do. That not always the goal.
The pleasure is in the journey as well as the destination.
You can read how they got there here
What’s your story?
What’s the one thing in your life that has held you back? What did you do that turned this discuss-advantage into strength?