What’s driving entrepreneurs? Dreams and corporate downsizing, for starters

A recent study pointed out that one-fifth of graduates from Michigan’s major universities are going into entrepreneurship and businesses unrelated to their fields of study. I think this is a fascinating study. To wit, when I was growing up, the path was pretty straightforward in you were from Detroit: get your high school and college…

Yes, mayoral candidates, we need infrastructure and services, but what about jobs?

Although I was traveling during the recent Detroit mayoral debate at the Mackinac Policy Conference, I was following the candidates via various social media sites. Quite frankly, I was taken aback by some of the responses of the candidates when asked what the most pressing issues were and are for Detroit as we enter into a…

The positives to being your own boss

I had lunch last week with a small-business owner who’s now a successful entrepreneur.  She was sharing with me topics which might be of interest to her as she’s focusing on growing her business. So, of course, we discussed her background and how she became a business owner.  Additionally, we reviewed the “usual” topics of…

Now is the time to prove the critics wrong about Detroit

“How’s Detroit doing?” “Is it ever going to come back?” “It’s a shame what’s happened to it?” I travel frequently and these are the types of questions and/comments I hear frequently – particularly when people find out I’m from Detroit. The three quotes referenced were shared with me over the last 10 days. It’s almost…

Q&A with EMU’s Michael Tidwell: Entrepreneurship, small business and education

Many entrepreneurs don’t realize the many resources focused on small business development—at their fingertips. Metro Detroit has many local colleges and universities which provide resources for you as you think about starting or growing a business. Michael Tidwell, dean of the College of Business, Eastern Michigan University, is relatively new to EMU. He’s been at EMU…

Yolander Walker talks about starting a business, giving back to community

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Detroit-area has the fourth-most black-owned businesses in the country — following New York, Chicago and Houston, respectively. There are a total of just fewer than 2 million black-owned businesses across the country. This represents a 60 percent increase over the past five years.The three leading sectors are retail, health…

A look at the impact health reform will have on small businesses

The Detroit Regional Chamber recently announced a Health Care Reform website for employers. To this end, I’ve been asked several times this question: What impact will the Affordable Patient Health Care Act (APHCA), aka, Health Care Reform, have on my (small) business? Let’s try to help you out. A brief reminder, beginning January 1, 2014,…

Now’s the time to come together for Detroit

Last week was a busy week for Detroit.  There’s no reason to rehash it, but would like to share some thoughts on where we go from here. Normally, this column focuses on small business development and its role in Detroit’s revitalization. However, after seeing the recent dynamics, I believe it’s time for this region to…

Have you done a business assessment lately?

It’s March (Madness) and I’m wondering, have you had your assessment? Not your personal health assessment — although, I encourage you to do so —  but your business assessment? You’re probably asking: What’s he talking about? Let me explain. Just like you’re encouraged to get an annual checkup to ensure your physical and well being…

Detroit must rebrand itself, but do so while retaining its legacy

With the recent announcement by Gov. Rick Snyder that an emergency financial manager (EFM) will be assigned to the city of Detroit, the challenge becomes how does the anchor city of this region brand itself in light of its current financial situation? The issues confronting our region are well documented.  Let’s not hide the fact…