May 22, 2007

May 15th Blog


We are delighted to present you with our 22nd issue of Entrepreneurial Alternatives Newsletter and our 6th issue of 2007. I greet you today as the President, Founder, and CEO of the National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc., which is an exciting new organization that I established a few months ago. Our theme for today's edition of our newsletter is "Making Dreams Come True." For the past few years, I have dreamt of taking my work to the next level and I was able to do this with the establishment of The National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc (NCE). The NCE is a national organization that was created to build entrepreneurial capacity and enhance economic growth and development in our country and in our region. It is a perfect way to help promote regional and national collaborations. We believe that the National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc., is in a perfect position to continue to help facilitate meaningful collaborative efforts to promote regionalism and economic growth.

We are delighted that our subscriber list for our Entrepreneurial Alternatives Newsletter includes several thousand people and continues to grow each week. We are delighted that some of our subscribers are located in far-away countries in Europe and Africa as well. Please, feel free to forward copies of our newsletters to your family and friends and please send us additional names of individuals that you would like us to add to our list. We will be happy to send them copies of our newsletters right away. In today's edition, we provide the second of the Ten Personality Characteristics of Successful Black Entrepreneurs, a brief synopsis of my recent presentation at the Western New England College in Massachusetts, and our Dear Dr. House letters which come from Kenya and Cleveland, Ohio.

Quote of the Week

"Sometimes, we don't know what we don't know."

---Les Brown---
Bestselling author and International Motivational Speaker

The Ten Personality Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs, Part 2 (of 10)
by Dr. Bessie House

Personality Characteristic Number Two: High Self Esteem

(This section is a brief excerpt from Dr. House's book, "The Ten Personality Characteristics of Successful Black Entrepreneurs."

If I could rank these 10 characteristics, I would rank self-esteem as the most important of the 10 traits. But, ironically, for people of color, it is by far, their weakest characteristic.

There is certainly a great irony here. It should be their strongest characteristic.

The reality is that ever since Africans came to the Americas under the umbrella of the TransAtlantic Slave Trade in the 1400's, their cultural values, beliefs, and lifestyles have been denigrated in this country. This constant onslaught on the self-esteem of people of color has had dire and devastating consequences to their confidence and feelings of self-esteem. As Dr. Carter G. Woodson, the founder of the Association of Afro-Life and History and the author of the"The Mis-Education of the Negro" has so eloquently written,

"When you control a man's thinking, you do not have to tell him not to stand here or to go yonder. He will find his proper place and will stay in it. You do not need to send him to the back door. He will go without being told. In fact, if there is no back door, he will cut one out for his own benefit."

If you would like a copy of Dr. House's audiobook, please e-mail for instructions on how to purchase a copy.
Dr. Bessie House Invited to Speak in Massachusetts

Dr. Bessie House was invited to speak at the 2nd Annual Conference sponsored by the Western New England College Law and Business Center for Advancing Entrepreneurship in Springfield, Massachutsetts. The theme for this conference was "Current Issues in Community and Economic Development" and the conference was held on March 30, 2007. Participants presented papers on a number of topic areas which included Set/Asides and Affirmative Action, how to facilitate public-private partnerships, urban entrepreneurship, and fringe banking programs. Dr. House presented a paper titled, "The Impact of Minority-Set Aside Programs on Black Business Success: Implications for Public Policy." Dr. House's paper will be published in the November edition of The Western New England Law Review.
Dr. Bessie House Establishes the National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc.

The National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc. was founded several months ago by Dr. Bessie House, President and CEO of the National Center for Entrepreneurship, in consultation with several of its' board members which include Mr. John Bustamante and Mr. Steven Simms. Mr. John Bustamante is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the NCE. The purpose of the National Center for Entrepreneurship is to promote entrepreneurial development and economic growth in our region, the state of Ohio, and in the United States, more broadly speaking. The National Center for Entrepreneurship is a collaborative of regional and national business centers which have been created to use the successful entrepreneurial model developed by Dr. Bessie House over the past twelve year period. The National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc., has created a national model of entrepreneurial excellence that is based on empirical research performed by Dr. House on numerous factors which promote business success that has been validated many times over in the business training classes provided by the National Center for Entrepreneurship and its' affiliate centers over the past decade. The NCE is a non-profit business franchise that is developing more affiliate centers across the United States. The goal is to replicate the entrepreneurial model used by the NCE in many towns and communities in order to generate more new business start-up companies and to help existing businesses to take their work to another level.

Affiliate centers of the NCE include the Center for the Study and Development of Minority Businesses at Kent State University, the Entrepreneurial Academy of Greater Cleveland, and the recently established Youngstown Entrepreneurial Academy in Youngstown, Ohio. According to Dr. House, "We are delighted to say that we have also been asked to establish affiliate business centers in Akron and Canton, Ohio, as well as in Chicago, Illinois, Detroit, Michigan, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and New York City."

If you are interested in establishing an affiliate center in your home town, please contact Dr. House about the details of such a collaboration and the requirements for becoming an affiliate center at 330-672-5307 or 216-731-4426.
Building Local Entrepreneurial Talent: An Evaluation of the Entrepreneurial Academy of Greater Cleveland
by Dr. Richard Njoku, Independent Program Evaluator

The Entrepreneurial Academy of Greater Cleveland (E-Academy of Greater Cleveland) belongs to a genre of non-academic and non-accredited entrepreneurial programs that are in the forefront of preparing ordinary citizens to take the plunge into the murky waters of entrepreneurship. Its mission is premised on assisting residents of the Cleveland Empowerment Zone communities to acquire the hands-on skills necessary to achieve economic success in the marketplace. However, the E-Academy of Greater Cleveland is not just another entrepreneurial program, as it is differentiated from the pack by at least three factors. First, it was founded as an innovative partnership of a broad-spectrum of community stakeholders including 1) Kent State University, 2) the City of Cleveland Empowerment Zone, 3) the Fairfax Renaissance Development Corporation, 4) the Glenville Development Corporation, 5) the Consortium for Economic and Community Development, and 6) Midtown Cleveland. Second, its founding values are grounded in sound research, especially, on the predictors of economic and business success. The affiliation with Kent State University has ensured that the E-Academy of Greater Cleveland benefits from a pipeline of sound research in the field of entrepreneurship conducted by Dr. Bessie House and other instructors at the Center for the Study for Minority Businesses. Finally, the E-Academy of Greater Cleveland boasts of a practical curriculum that aligns business training with skill development, and business coaching conducted by accomplished entrepreneurs.

The Goal-based Evaluation

This goal-based evaluation was designed to generate usable information to guide policy and programmatic revisions of the Entrepreneurial Academy of Greater Cleveland (E-Academy of Greater Cleveland), with a view to strengthening its overall quality. The evaluation assessed the success of the E-Academy of Greater Cleveland in achieving its formative and summative goals. On the formative side, it assessed 1) the extent to which recruitment and enrollment complied with the eligibility requirements of the City of Cleveland Empowerment Zone; 2) the quality, quantity, duration and intensity of program delivery, including entrepreneurship training and business coaching; and 3) the rate of retention, completion, and graduation in the program. On the summative side, it assessed 1) gains in functional knowledge of business and entrepreneurship as assessed with pretest and post tests; 2) transfer of learning, and the extent to which participants used knowledge and skills to advance entrepreneurial activities, as demonstrated by the development of business plans; and 3) new business startups or expansions by participants. Levels of satisfaction with the program were also assessed and reported. The evaluation focused on the success of the 41 participants who completed both the basic and advanced workshop series in entrepreneurship in 2006.

A mixed data collection strategy was employed in the course of this evaluation, including an extensive review of program documents and records; key informant interviews with program managers; pre and post tests of participants; and surveys of program graduates.

Evidence from the evaluation leads to the following conclusions regarding the results of the E-Academy of Greater Cleveland in 2006:

*The program targeted a diverse group of participants, in terms of age, gender, level of educational attainment, marital status, previous business experience and other relevant demographic and personal variables.

*Recruitment and enrollment met all the eligibility requirements of the Cleveland Empowerment Zone. Program records indicate that all participants (100%) were recruited from the EZ communities of Fairfax, Glenville, Hough, and Midtown Corridor.

*Participants received a total of 122 training hours and 284 business coaching hours during the year.

*Retention, completion, and graduation rates were very high. Analysis of data showed 82% retention, completion, and graduation rates.

*Levels of satisfaction with the E-Academy of Greater Cleveland's program were very high. At least 98% of participants rated the training workshops "excellent" or "very good" on all 5 categories of assessment, including 1) relevance of the workshop content; 2) usefulness of the workshop content; 3) instructors' presentation style; 4) instructors' level of preparedness; and 5) overall rating of the training workshop.

*Participants made statistically significant gain in their functional knowledge of business and entrepreneurship concepts as assessed with pre and post tests. On the average, participants in the basic workshop series made a 30-point gain in knowledge, while those in the advanced workshop series made a 32-point gain.

*All participants (100%) developed business plans of their current or prospective businesses; a clear demonstration of the use of knowledge and skills gained in the program.

*A total of 28 businesses were either established or expanded by graduates of the E-Academy of Greater Cleveland within the past year. On the legal structure of the businesses established by the graduates, close to one-half (48%) had established limited liability companies (LLCs), while slightly over one-third (35%) established C or S corporations. Thirteen percent (13%) established sole proprietorships, while 4% established 501(c) (3) tax-exempt organizations.

*The types of businesses started included personal services (21.3%); business services (17.9%); retail trade (14.3%); educational services (10.7%); professional services (10.7%); real estate (7.1%); energy/utilities (3.6%); computer & Internet (3.6%); Arts & entertainment (3.6%); maintenance (3.6%); and automotive services (3.6%). The evaluator, Benchmark Consulting Group, is currently collecting hard data on business and economic outcomes (jobs created, microloans raised, individual wealth created, etc.) to enable it assess the overall impact of the E-Academy of Greater Cleveland on the city's economy. For further information regarding this evaluation, please contact Richard E. Njoku, Ph.D at (216) 374-8655, or send an email to:
Youngstown Mayor Announces New Collaboration with National Center For Entrepreneurship (Headed by Dr. Bessie House)

Mayor Jay Williams of the city of Youngstown and Dr. Bessie House [picture on right], announced in a press conference on Monday morning, April 9, 2007, the creation of a strategic partnership and collaboration with the City of Youngstown, the National Center for Entrepreneurship (housed in the greater Cleveland area and headed by Dr. Bessie House), the Mahoning Youngstown Community Action Partnership (headed by Mr. Richard Roller), and Youngstown State University. Together, they have established the Youngstown Entrepreneurial Academy. All of the collaborating partners in the collaboration were present at this historic event!

The development of this important partnership is in perfect harmony with efforts that are now underway in Northeast, Ohio to encourage more collaborative initiatives that promote the goals of regionalism, economic and racial inclusion, and to develop a common economic development strategy to help the entire region to prosper and enhance economic self-sufficiency.

This strategic collaboration will also help to further the city of Youngtown's goals of providing business training assistance to minority and female residents, and disadvantaged individuals of Youngstown in order to create more viable businesses, job opportunities, and wealth creation. The ultimate goal is to help the citizens to become economically independent and to acquire skills to enhance their own empowerment.

The creation of the National Center for Entrepreneurship (NCE) by Dr. Bessie House in 2006 was the natural outgrowth of her earlier development of two other business training centers during the past 10 year period which include the Center for the Study and Development of Minority Businesses at Kent State University and the Entrepreneurial Academy for Greater Cleveland. Through the years, these centers have produced award-winning research, award-winning curricular materials and business training programs. The National Center and its' affiliate centers have developed innovative, research-based business training programs, which are different in many respects from other existing business centers in Ohio and the nation. Thus, they have developed a very impressive track record of success as they have served more than 350 clients and have helped to generate more than 51 new business start-up companies in Northeast, Ohio. They have also helped existing businesses to take their work to another level. These businesses have contributed greatly to economic growth and development for this region and the state of Ohio.

Dr. House is also a nationally-recognized leader, advocate and expert on entrepreneurship and economic development and is also an entrepreneur herself, having established several for-profit businesses. She is also the author of the critically acclaimed book, "Confronting the Odds: African American Entrepreneurship in Cleveland, Ohio" which will be one of the required textbooks used in the business training classes.

The Director of the Youngstown Entrepreneurial Academy will be Mr. Herman Hill, who is a former graduate of Kent State University. He possesses a strong background and keen understanding of economic development issues for our region.

The Youngstown Entrepreneurial Academy began its' operations on April 9th, 2007 and already has almost 200 people on its' waiting list to take its' entrepreneurial business class. It will offer two intensive introductory business training classes starting in June of this year and will later offer an advanced business class. It will also help participants to achieve micro loan support and will work to establish space and support mechanisms to house its' new business start-up companies. The goal of the Youngstown Entrepreneurial Academy is to produce new business enterprises and to provide assistance to existing entrepreneurs as well. For more information about the program and to enroll, please contact, Mr. Herman Hill, the director at 330-747-7921, extension 1190.
Dear Dr. House

Hi Dr House,

I enjoy reading about the great things you are doing to promote entrepreneurship in Cleveland and other parts of the country. Entrepreneurial Alternatives , is a good read for me.

I met you in 2004 in the company of Dr. Noah Midamba. At the time of our meeting, I was doing my Executive Doctorate of Management at Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. I graduated in May 2006 and am now back in Kenya. I am the current CEO of Kenya College of Accountacy.

I'm interested in entrepreneurship, and wish for some sort of affliation between your Entrepreneurial Academies and our college.

During my doctorate, I researched "Factors that contribute to the dearth of entrepreneurship among African Americans in Cleveland's Inner City." Your book Confronting the Odds, helped me quite a lot in my literature review. I also quoted extensively from a journal where you had written about the Psychological Capital and how it influences entrepreneursip in an individual. Ultimately, I extended this study to Kenya where I looked at "Factors that Facilitate Intention to Venture Creation among College Students and Nascent Entrepreneurs." It was both an exploratory and confirmatory research. Please take time to consider my request.

Kenya College of Accontancy will receive its' accreditation in July this year to become a full fledged university. Currently we have 13,000 students pursuing various studies in accountancy, ICT, law, and entrepreneurship amongst others.

Hope to hear from you.

Kind regards, Dr Daniel Musungu Oruoch
Kenya College Of Accountancy,
PO Box 56808(00200),

Dear Dr. Oruoch:

Hope you are doing well and thank you so much for your marvelous letter. It was both encouraging and stimulating. I enjoyed meeting you a few years ago and am happy to see that you have used my work extensively while pursuing your Ph.D. at Case Western Reserve University and later on as you have since traveled back to your homeland of Kenya. As you know from our newsletter, our entrepreneurial activities are continuing to grow and expand across time and space. Thank you for requesting an opportunity to develop some type of affiliation between our National Center for Entrepreneurship and your college to create an Entrepreneurial Academy in Kenya. I am delighted to hear that you are the CEO of Kenya College of Accountancy. I would be delighted to discuss further with you how we can work to establish such an affiliation and as you may know, I have done a lot of work on Kenya, and performed field research at the University of Nairobi some years ago for my Ph.D. dissertation.

I will contact you in the near future and we can develop a strategy to develop a great affiliation between our respective organizations.

All the best,

Dr. Bessie House
President, Founder, and CEO
National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc. and
Entrepreneurial Academy of Greater Cleveland
Executive Director and Founder
Center for the Study and Development of Minority Businesses
Kent State University

Dear Dr. House:

I would like to receive information on Dr. House's book, "Ten Personality Characteristics of Successful Black Entrepreneurs."

Shirley Shadwick

Dear Ms. Shadwick:

Thanks for your note. You can purchase copies of "The Ten Personality Characteristics of Successful Black Entrepreneurs" by contacting our office at 216-731-4426.

All the best, All the best,

Dr. Bessie House
President, Founder, and CEO
National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc. and
Entrepreneurial Academy of Greater Cleveland
Executive Director and Founder
Center for the Study and Development of Minority Businesses
Kent State University

Quick Links
# E-Academy
# B. House Communications, Inc.
# The Dr. House Minority Business Blog

In Closing
Finally, we at the National Center for Entrepreneurship, the Center For The Study and Development of Minority Businesses and the Entrepreneurial Academy of Greater Cleveland want to make a call out to any former student of our Centers. If you move or have some other method of contact, please notify us! We love hearing about your new businesses, business plans, and any other successes that you might be experiencing. If you could send us a recent photograph and a small description of your success, we will include them in one of our upcoming editions of Entrepreneurial Alternatives.

Our demand pull is high, and we cannot conceivably get everything that we would like done without your aid. We are looking for volunteers for both of our centers. If you are interested in volunteering for us, please call our Kent center at 330.672.5307 or our Cleveland center at 216.731.4426.

There are individuals in our class that we have not heard from since they stopped attending; keep in touch! Contact information is at the bottom of this blog.

Dr. Bessie House
President, Founder and CEO, National Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc.
Director, Entrepreneurial Academy of Greater Cleveland
Executive Director and Founder, Center for the Study and Development of Minority Businesses, Kent State University

All Stories, Pictures, and Works Copyrighted by their Original Owners. Entrepreneurial Alternatives is a copyrighted publication of the National Center for Entrepreneurship, Incorporated. © Copyright 2007, Dr. Bessie House
phone: 330-672-5307


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