Black People : Employees

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by Blackbird, Jul 3, 2010.

  1. Blackbird

    Blackbird Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Does anyone own a business with employees?

    If so, how many?

    How many are not Black?

    What kind of company?
     
  2. $$RICH$$

    $$RICH$$ Lyon King Admin. STAFF

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    When i was out there like that i had 12 and 11 was black in a chain of gift stores
    now that i've narrowed it down by a huge slide just 3 all black
     
  3. Full Speed

    Full Speed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I owned a computer sales and service business several years ago that employed, at its zenith, 13 people. The racial make up of my staff varied from time to time, but If I remember correctly when I had the max staff of 13, 4 where Black, 8 where White and 1 was Hispanic. My receptionist/inside sales person was a Black female. I had one outside sales person that was a Black Male and I had two service technicians who where Black males....they where both part time, both friends of mine before going into business, and they just helped out when I was over loaded...usually after hours we would hang out, talk noise, and fix or build computers.

    My receptionist was awesome. She was a great point person, very professional, loyal to the company and very customer oriented. I would offer Spiffs (Special pay incentives for fast sales) for certain products for certain periods of time. She was very money motivated and did very well on promoting those items that had spiff incentives. It was nice working with her as she had a great personality and made life around the office fun.

    My outside sales person didn't really impress me much before I hired him. He had no previous experience in the computer industry, had no significant personal computer experience and his appearence was a little less impressive than a typical outside sales person. (He wasn't bad, he just didn't have that sharp look that I usually looked for in an outside face for my company) He convinced me to give him a chance on a mostly commission basis with a small salary. Somehow, he managed to be a marginally successful sales person. He did just enough to keep his bills paid and just enough to keep me from firing him.

    My client base was roughly 75% White, possibly more. I wanted more Black employees but I had very few apply and I did not actively recruit other than a newspaper ad when I needed someone. Of my white employees, all but two where very loyal to the company. One was a technician and the other was an outside sales rep. Both were very good at what they did but definately looking out for themselves. In fact they where building a business on the side taking valuable customers from me. They were taking commercial customers who needed lucrative network services and who purchased multiple computers. The Hispanic guy cost me a lot of money on warranty repairs his diagnostic skills were terrible. He declared parts to be bad and replaced them for the clients under warranty. He was then responsible to send those parts back to the distributor for warranty replacement. After he left, I found a stack of over 100 motherboards that he had declared bad that had not been sent back. The teenage son of my sales and marketing manager stopped buy and asked if he could take some of those motherboards home and tinker with them. I told him they where all bad and out of warranty so he could take them all. He came back a few days later and said that over 70 of those motherboards where good.

    Other than those guys, I had some very talented and committed employees. The sales and marketing manager was very good. We had a trainer who taught our courses in Microsoft Excel, Word, and Power Point who was certified through Microsoft and could make a spreadsheet do things you could only imagine.

    I am sure I went beyond the scope of your intent and purpose, but I enjoy talking business. My uncles and I talk business all the time.
     
  4. Blackbird

    Blackbird Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Thanks brother for taking the time to share and I enjoyed reading your story. My wife and I currently own a mental health outpatient agency. We have 16 employees, out of which 10 are not Black.

    What I've noticed is the perspective of an employer is much different than that of an employee.
     
  5. Full Speed

    Full Speed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    :) Ahhww come on brother, you know you can't get off that easy. You and I both know you are putting it MILDLY. The perspective of an employer is MEGA different than that of an employee. I know you got stories.....SHARE.
     
  6. Blackbird

    Blackbird Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    One thing I learn is how dependent employees are on the employer. Most people work their workweek and that's it. As employers, many of us continue when others could care less. My people go on vacation and do not have to worry about the job while they are off; but when my wife and I go on vacation we take the laptop, the business and personal cellphones and sometimes have to begin our days with giving direction, checking up on contacts and every other day to day operation.

    Another thing that kills me about employees is eventhough they know they were terminated for cause and gross misconduct or they voluntarily resigned, they still want to head to the unemployment office to file a claim for unemployment. One of my workers stated she was going to the EEOC to file a claim of discrimination against us because she was Black. In actuality, she engaged in grossly inappropriate conduct that bordered on sexual harassment and severe violation of several company policies.

    I used to sympathize with working people, but as I continue to run my own, I believe the chips are stacked up against business owners.
     
  7. $$RICH$$

    $$RICH$$ Lyon King Admin. STAFF

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    I used to sympathize with working people, but as I continue to run my own, I believe the chips are stacked up against business owners.

    It has been that way for a long time for small businesses and owners , I felt the impact of that long ago.
    [​IMG]
     
  8. Full Speed

    Full Speed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    As such, the rewards and benefits of entreprenurship should be much. Business is challenging, it is risky. At least 7 out of 10 businesses fail oftentimes leaving the owner in financial ruins. It takes a lot of discipline and the ability to make hard decisions to run a successful business. Sometimes the owner has to make decisions that negatively effect one or more employees. To the employee, this might come off as greed or unfair but if the business owner does not make these hard decisions he will negatively effect the entire business and ultimately himself. Like you said, there is a load of responsibility that lays upon the owner that the employee never sees. As an example, with 16 employees, you probably have a payroll of AT LEAST $32,000 per month more or less. In times of economic turmoil such as this, that can be stressful at times.


    That is so unfortunate when SOME Black employees are not willing to consider any other possibility for disciplinary actions than discrimination. Even when the employer is Black, if you discipline them for negative behavior, it has to be because YOU are a sell out. It can't possibly be THEIR fault. I have seen some Black own businesses that the employees act like they are at the play ground rather than a professional place of business. When the business owner tries to impose standards of professionalism upon them they try to act as though the owner is trying to "act white".



    I still sympathize with working people, as I am sure you do to. The bottom line, however, is a business owner has to make the tough decisions and take care of number one because if he doesn't, before long, he won't be able to take care of nobody...including himself.
     
  9. Blackbird

    Blackbird Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Yeah, I still do, but let's just say after dealing with some rotten apples and the wicked things they try to do, the ones that be on some ya know what get no love from me. I have fired 4 people this year already for things such as slander, fraud, creating hostile work environments for other employees and pornography. Three others have resigned and two of them still tried to go to unemployment with lies. We have been very accomodating to them. One resigned because she was relocating (at least that's what she told us), she went to unemployment stating she suffered from emotional distress. Completely unfounded and of course, we had documentation and she had none so the claim was denied. All claims and their subsequent appeals have been denied so far but just the audacity.

    The sad thing about the Black folks that fall in this group is they all stated at some point that they were here for us (my wife and I), that they were happy to see Black people doing it and that they believed in our work. Also, they wanted to receive special privileges because we all are Black, such as taking the job less serious, on average, than our white employees, not doing the assigned work, getting visible angry at disciplinary actions taken because of their impropieties, neglecting or outright rejecting to do the work assigned, and habitually breaking the company's electronic use policy. One supervisor showed naked pictures to their workers on a company computer and thought it was okay because we were Black.
     
  10. Full Speed

    Full Speed Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    I feel ya. As I stated earlier, I know of some Black own businesses that the employees act as if they are on a playground rather than a place of business. Your post here reminded me of my compliaint about a McDonalds resturant in my town that I posted here previously.

    Likewise, you give me a most wonderful opportunity to point directly at how we assume or take for granted that we as black business owners are owed the loyalty of black people regardless of how we perform. I have been on both sides of this. This is MY OPINION, which is based upon MY EXPERIENCES on BOTH SIDES of this issue. I will give you a real world example. There is a McDonalds in the town I live in and there is one in the town north of where I live. The one in my town has a black owner, black manager, and almost all black employees. The one in the town just north of me has a white owner, white manager, and about 70% white employees.

    The service and experience is so different in these two resturants that you wouldn't even think they were part of the same franchise. At the black owned resturant, the employees are loud (yelling back and forth between employees about non-work related gossip), unprofessional, slow, do not smile, and act as though they are doing you a favor to take your money. They are constantly out of stock on menu items. When I order coffee and ask them to use their machine to put in the amount of sugar and cream I prefer, they give me the packets in my hand. I will then ask if they would please use their machine to put it in for me, they look at me as though I am the laziest person in the world. I understand reciprical attitudes, so I present a very pleasant attitude, smile, and insure I have no sarcasam in my voice.

    The service and experience in the white owned resturant is consistently professional, they smile, and are notably faster. Most importantly to me is when I order coffee and say "add 2 creams and 1 sugar" it is ALWAYS added. They have never handed me packets saying "You can just put it in yourself" as I have been told dozens of times at the other resturant.

    Now, I take my coffee seriously. I really enjoy McDonalds Premium Roast coffee. While I initially tried to be "Loyal" to the black own resturant because it is owned by one of us AND he provides employment for dozens of OUR young people, I currently avoid this resturant when I can. Now, my guess is the black owner would probably say "You see how we do each other" We don't "support our own endeavors" No, I don't buy the idea that my business should be taken for granted or is due the black business owner even though, in this case, he provides a definiatively unprofessional level of service.


    On the other side of it, I had a white employee whom I fired who did basically the same thing. He had built a computer for a customer. The customer picked up the computer and brought it back the same day with a problem that was obviously his fault. It was about 20 minutes before closing time so he told me he would repair it the following day. I told him that the customer had just paid money for a computer today and we owed it to the customer to get his computer to him today. Since it was obviously his fault (he admitted it as well) he would have to fix it. I told him that he would have to stay late, but would still be on the clock. He said he had something to do and that he would fix it tomorrow. I told him that if he leave prior to fixing that computer he was fired. He choose to leave. I fixed the computer myself, delivered it to the customers home, set it up for them and apologized for the inconvienience. I fired him. He filed for unemployment and I disputed it. We had a telephone hearing and I won.

    To his credit, he did come to me and apologize later. He said "I didn't think I was wrong, but we both told the mediator the truth about exactly what occured and he decided that you were right and I was wrong, so I apologize"
     
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