**Robert Blackwell, Sr.** has done what every good entrepreneur should do at the point of retirement or at the point of selling the business. He has written a book. He has recorded his business history, development and intelligence in a book that others can follow. He calls it *_*My Evolution as an Entrepreneur: The Story Behind Blackwell Consulting.**_
He wrote the book to reflect on his own life and as he thought about his business ****experiences he wanted to share it with others. The second reason he wrote the book was the challenge of it. He had never written a book before.
The book is a handbook for those in corporate America in their late 40’s to early 50’s who have the itch to leave the good corporate job and move forward into putting their shingle on the door. The book tells how to leave corporate and to benefit in your own business from networking, contacts and even engaging in joint ventures with your former employer.
Blackwell grew up never having had a Black teacher in his educational career. He was a cab driver and his wife said to him, one evening, I didn’t marry a cab driver. He went back to school and was on the cutting edge of technology. He had a teacher who believed in him. She nurtured him and she changed his life in a very simple way. She paid attention and she challenged him.
He went into technology and worked in sales. At that time IBM was the place for the best and the brightest. As a sales person, he was one to solve business problems and introduce technology into an operation to save money, increase efficiency and to increase profit. He was a problem solver. He had to move his family a couple of times, sometimes against their wishes. He took promotions within the company and each move was in a growth mode. He ran his own territory, often taken undeveloped turf and made it successful. He became smarter and more successful. He discusses his career path and his career growth. Often he was the only Black in the group. He never allowed race to be a problem.
The Corporate Life
In his corporate life, he learned to build teams. He learned the art of dealing with people. He liked hiring women, saying they made the best workers. He learned how corporate really worked. He was a salesperson, a technology expert, a manager and an executive. When he retired from IBM, he saw an opportunity to began his own business. He started Blackwell consulting. He knew the business game and learned more lessons about being independent without corporate cover. The first thing he did was obtain a line of credit. He included his family in his business and he talks about how to make family work in your business. He found a niche and he worked it. He discusses branding and how to network. He talks about the difference between doing business with the private sector and the public sector. He gives straight talk about being a minority.
Blackwell says he hopes the books inspires young African Americans who can gleam from his work pattern and determine that he was not superman but that an ordinary person can put his mind to the lofty idea of being able to establish their own business. He says the best thing that came out of his business experience was confidence.
He concludes saying the difference of being in corporate and being on your own is you can be who you want to be as an entrepreneur. Corporate gives you the rules and the task that are well defined. You play your role. In your own business you have to be everything. You are the visionary, sales, you produce the product and you have to adapt quickly and play multiple roles.
Blackwell became a leader in his field and sold his business. He now wants to share his business experiences, conduct workshops and lecture on entrepreneurship issues and opportunities on college campus and business organizations.
Bravo, Mr. Blackwell.