Lateshia Pearson of OWN Community’s Belle Collective is an entrepreneur and licensed life coach constructing an empire with sisterhood in thoughts.
A Pelahatchie Belle at coronary heart, Pearson is uniting Black girls throughout her dwelling state of Mississippi to fill the necessity most Black entrepreneurs and aspiring enterprise house owners don’t have entry to: assist.
All of it started with Girls’s Brunch Mississippi in 2017, offering an area for girls to reveal their services and products and knowledgeable community to equip them with monetary literacy and enterprise credit score info from bankers, credit score restore specialists, mortgage originators, grant writers, enterprise accountants, and extra. Regardless of COVID-19-induced shutdowns, Pearson’s brunches proceed to thrive.
“Once they depart a girls’s brunch occasion they may have all the things they should succeed,” Pearson advised BLACK ENTERPRISE.
Along with her Nationwide Girls’s Brunch Affiliation Inc., the empowering founder and CEO additionally created a platform for “entrepreneurial coaching and workshops designed to increase self-worth, improve information relative to monetary administration and planning, and to teach and equip entrepreneurs for achievement,” in response to a press release obtained by BLACK ENTERPRISE.
As a sisterhood champion, Pearson curated one-on-one empowerment periods, which in her personal phrases, have allowed her to “empower girls from everywhere in the world and to do what I like to do—encourage, give hope, and assist aspiring entrepreneurs discover their place on this planet.”
Pearson mirrored on her journey with BLACK ENTERPRISE and likewise dropped a few enterprise credit score and mortgage suggestions.
How has rising up in Pelahatchie, Mississippi, influenced you to pursue entrepreneurship?
The affect was that there wasn’t an affect. It’s a neighborhood of perhaps 1,200 individuals proper now. What influenced me to wish to do higher was seeing girls who labored at factories and vegetation.
Rising up in a small neighborhood like that, I spotted that I wished extra and I wished to interrupt generational curses. There was a manufacturing unit out of my bed room window, and I might see household and folks strolling out and in of that manufacturing unit via that window, and I knew that I wished extra out of my life.
When and the place did your monetary literacy journey start?
I created an occasion known as the “Boss Financial institution,” the place I invited mortgage originators. After having the empowerment brunch in 2017 and 2018—girls began asking questions on how they may get funding, if we had any grant writers within the organizations, and so on.
We obtained emails asking how they may get enterprise credit score and obtain loans and grants to begin and increase their companies.
What are you witnessing first-hand about what Black girl entrepreneurs’ and aspiring enterprise house owners’ wants and challenges are?
The wants and challenges of small Again enterprise house owners are that they want extra assist. They want encouragement to maneuver ahead; they want that additional push as a result of it’s onerous operating a small enterprise. There may be additionally a necessity for advertising and marketing, publicity, and funding to scale and increase small companies.
As a actuality TV star, in what methods have you ever leveraged your tv footprint to develop your companies?
TV has uncovered me to extra alternatives. I’ve been in a position to coach extra girls world wide, my enterprise has grown tremendously, and I’ve created one-on-one empowerment periods—we speak about all the things from enterprise to private points that ladies face in enterprise and in life. Being on TV has uncovered me to alternatives that I might by no means have been in a position to expertise coming from the small city of Mississippi.
What’s a number of the finest recommendation you’ve given to Black girls entrepreneurs and aspiring enterprise house owners about establishing credit score?
Apply for a DUN, Dunn and Bradstreet—one of many three main enterprise credit score bureaus. Open a enterprise bank card, and set up commerce strains along with your suppliers.
By way of our companions on the brunch, many various monetary professionals are there, in particular person, to debate varied methods and choices to assist them set up credit score. I present the platform and house for the connections to be made, and the credit score consultants assist them.
What’s the perfect recommendation you’ve given on tips on how to qualify for a enterprise mortgage?
Have a marketing strategy and mortgage proposal. Maintain good private credit score and wonderful enterprise credit score. Additionally, bear in mind that almost all banks think about your annual income and years in enterprise, amongst different related elements.
Quite a lot of girls had been afraid to enter the financial institution and speak to the originators as a result of they had been advised that Blacks don’t qualify for loans. So, one of many essential hurdles is face-to-face, in-person contact with monetary advisers who’re occupied with assembly them.