November 6, 2013

Beyond Business: Entreprenative Interview

Last week I had the great opportunity to do what I rarely get to do: talk about the business side of Beyond Buckskin. Most interviews that I do are focused on the mission behind Beyond Buckskin, or about Native American fashion in general, or about issues of cultural appropriation.

I (digitally) sat down with Collin Price, a Ho-Chunk tribal member and the founder of a new website called Entreprenative. The mission of this site is to create a forum for Native American entrepreneurs to share tips, inspire one another, and propel Native-run businesses forward.

Since I have no educational background in business, a space like this will be incredibly important to folks like me - people who have an idea for a business, execute it, and discover that they're onto something. The challenge then becomes this: how do I continue to grow my business to better serve our mission, and to not let this important opportunity slide by because I didn't learn critical business skills - and, I don't have time to go back to school for an MBA!

Also, the Native business world is a tad different than the broader business world, I believe, and it requires thinking creatively and ethically about providing opportunities for Native people and advancing our communities as a whole.

We (entrepreneurs) need to step up and be on par with the international business world, while at the same time standing firmly with our tribal communities. To do this successfully, we need to be grounded in who we are as Indigenous people while learning business skills. A resource like Entreprenative offers tips and success stories from real Native American business owners - they've done it, they've discovered some things that work (and some things that don't work!) and are here to share that wisdom with you. Play these podcasts while you're fixing breakfast in the morning, while you're commuting to work, or while you're tidying up the casa. Get inspired and pass that inspiration along. Our communities need it, and they deserve it.

Click here to listen to my interview with Collin- we discuss launching a new business, fear!, affecting change on an international level, and magic! (you know, the kind you get when you mix extraordinary people with wild and creative ideas). Click and enjoy.