Ken L. Harris serves as the President/CEO of the Michigan Black Chamber of Commerce with access to more than 79,000 black-owned businesses in Michigan. Commissioner Harris was elected to the Detroit Charter Commission in 2009. Harris currently serves on the U.S. Black Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors in Washington, DC and as Midwest Director for the US Black Chamber over 12 states. Harris is an active life member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, and a 33rd Degree United Supreme Council Prince Hall Mason. Harris received the U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 2007 Minority Business Advocate of the Year Award in Michigan and was inducted into Crain’s Detroit Business Class of 2007 40 under 40. Harris was also featured in DBusiness Magazine 30 in their 30’s Most Influential and Ebony Magazine in 2011. Harris a former NCAA Basketball Academic All-American point-guard for Clark Atlanta University graduated with a B.A. in Psychology and M.A. in Counseling Psychology from Clark Atlanta University (HBCU) in Atlanta, Georgia and an Educational Specialist (EDS) Degree from Wayne State University in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies. Ken Harris is a PhD candidate at the Michigan State University in African American and African Studies and the Eli Broad School of Business Program.
On Tuesday night, it was not even close. It was a one-‐sided landslide and deposit of
political capital. Reality has struck American politics in a very clear and certain way by affirming the legacy, leadership, and policies of the 44th President of the United States of America, Barack H. Obama, and the first African American President, who will lead the free world in a second term for four more years. No matter how many billions of dollars spent to off-‐set truth, punditry, manipulated polling, and ideological media spin, righteousness prevailed and affirmed the voice of the voiceless and the character of the new majority who confirmed that their voice, the only voice, be listened to.
“The changing U.S. electorate split in two Tuesday — not only along lines of political
party and ideology but also by race and ethnicity, gender and marital status, region and religion, education and age” Susan Page, USA TODAY
The new majority of African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, immigrants, youths,
single women, and the LBGT community dictated the U.S. electorate and will forge a new era and political force in the American political system from this point forward. This is an explicit statement to a country changing drastically in demographics, ethnicity, and racial make-‐up. Obama won 72 percent of Hispanics and 91 percent of African Americans. The Republican Party (GOP) seemed to be a majority of older and white voters and did not reflect the demographics that defeated its political ideology and attempt to reflect old American sentiments. For the first time, minorities make up more than half of the children born in the United States, but more importantly, their parents are voting. A reality check has struck the GOP at its core, which is in drastic need of urban renewal, diversity injection, and an ideological perception change. The new majority has forced change, and if change is not embraced, the GOP will perish.
“The white establishment is now the minority,” he added. “The voters, many of them, feel this economic system is stacked against them and they want stuff. You’re gonna see a tremendous Hispanic vote for President Obama. Overwhelming black vote for President Obama. And women will probably break President Obama’s way. People
feel that they are entitled to things—and which candidate, between the two, is going to give them things?” by Meenal Vamburkar, Mediaite
A win for democracy occurred on all levels. The mainstream media, political parties, and private and public sector infrastructures must begin to reflect the diverse communities and enclaves residing throughout America. Its composition could not be sharper. The country we live in today is far different than the country our forefathers founded. We must embrace it with open arms or become a witness to its true political power. The sleeping elephant in the room is awake, and roaring at the possibilities of shaping the future of this country. The new “majority minority” is now in control. How will America and local communities accept the colors of its beauty?
Congratulations to President Barack Obama, the first lady Michelle Obama, and their children, Malia Anne and Natasha ("Sasha"). You truly represent all of what the world sees in America and what we anticipate for ourselves.
Entrepreneurs should always be in search of one thing: credibility. Credibility garnerssupport for a legitimate operation, and we gain our legitimacy as business owners through our credibility.
We all struggle daily in our attempts to establish credibility or remain credible. I always
say that if you can strive for the absolute truth, encourage righteous behavior and
business practices, and always stand for something positive, then you’re on your way
toward a credible lifestyle. The sad thing is that we make promises all the time that we
can’t or don’t intend to keep; we lie when we don’t have to or tell half-truths that lead
to exaggerations or selective information, far from the facts or reality. As the saying
goes, “People do business with folks they know, love, and trust.” So, when you are
constantly lying, making promises you can’t keep, and camouflaging reality in rhetoric,
you take away that trust, hurt the people who love you, and blemish your most delicate
asset, your credibility. Once your credibility is gone, it is very hard to get it back, and
your record has been tarnished. This makes it hard for you as a business owner to have
or maintain a legitimate brand.
To create a credible track record, an entrepreneur must master the art of straight
talking, or less talking the talk and more walking the walk. People, customers, colleagues, and associates appreciate straightforward communication that is completely
open, honest, transparent, and 100% accurate. Businesses live or die by the truth. In
most cases, the truth has set businesses free from potential lawsuits, damage, poor
reputation, and lack of credibility. As entrepreneurs, we have to resist all temptation to
exaggerate, stretch the truth, or embellish the facts. We should also only make promises
we intend to keep and admit to our mistakes and imperfections.
At the end of the day, a entrepreneur or business owner who reaps credibility, admits to
faults or mistakes, keeps his or her promises, and always delivers a good check that
doesn’t bounce is a person I want to do business with, make a deal by, or purchase
products, commodities, goods, or services from. Make your business legitimate by being
a credible one first.
If you missed last week’s post, check out Volume I: Chivalrous Courtesy in Business.
Next week, Volume III: Nonverbal Communication, or “What people tell you without
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