LISTEN to Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon’s full episode of ESSENCE Podcast Network’s Unbossed Podcast here:
With the right preparation, planning, and love from your community you can build a thriving business. This is just what Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon, founder of The Village Market Atlanta, proved when she pulled up for a conversation on the latest episode of UnBossed podcast.
In 2011, Hallmon permanently left her home, family and teaching job behind in the Mississippi Delta for the ever-expanding city of Atlanta. This eventually allowed her to see the inconsistencies in how Black-owned businesses were supported and showcased.
Being an educator and a doer committed to excellence, Hallmon decided to do something about the lack of Black businesses being showcased and amplified without a single dollar of investor money. Just donations from her own village of family and friends.
“I didn’t want anyone to have ownership of a thing that was still so young in my mind and so young in creation,” she said to UnBossed host Marquita Harris. “I knew that eventually I would bring in other stakeholders, but I needed it to be very clear on what my principles and values were. I [believed] early on, that if you bring in too many investors early, what you initially wanted to create has been distorted.”
Now, The Village Market Atlanta has trained and showcased hundreds of Black businesses, growing their brand awareness and cementing local commitment to buying Black.
For a quick snippet of what you can expect in this episode to hear in this episode. See below!
…WHY JUNETEENTH IS SO IMPORTANT
“I’m a celebrator of all things us, because it’s necessary…The way that I know that we can support Black businesses is supporting what our gifts are. My gift is lifting Black entrepreneurship and talking very loud about it, I need to make sure my facts are straight and that I’m giving people actionable items and not just filling them up with hope or leaving them with emotions, and nowhere to take it. So we have to support at this place, where our gifts exist.”
…WHY LOVING ON YOUR EMPLOYEES IS GOLDEN
“I could not do any of my work if I didn’t have them. In January, I did a retreat with my team and they thought the retreat was going to be all for the Village Market. It wasn’t, the retreat was for their personal goals and the things that they, what they wanted most for their life. Because I know whatever they give me is really for this season. Any time you’re working towards somebody else’s baby, it’s seasonal.”
…THE IMPACT OF PROTESTING ON BLACK BUSINESSES
“When there is war and unrest, great people are always affected, but they’re not the target. And so when you understand who your target is, then you know when something happens that you did not intend to happen. I don’t think any protester is out there seeking to injure a Black business, to make their life any harder. They’re fighting so they can exist in a greater space. Then as a Black community, our job is to say, oh, okay, this was the casualty of war. Let’s go in and constructively fix it.”Share :