There’s no secret to success, but every prosperous entrepreneur would agree that productivity requires preparation. Here’s how 8 Black millennial CEO’s structure their days to prepare their businesses for success.
1. Rashaad Lambert- Founder of For(bes) the Culture
After co-founding For(bes) the Culture in 2017 with Vinasia Miles, Rashaad built a team of over 5,000 members in addition to securing a partnership with Forbes. He attributes his success to a weekly task-setting routine.
“Making my daily “Today List” has been essential. I decide on Sundays which things are a priority for that week and spread them out by assigning myself a list of tasks to complete each day. The first two hours of my day I spend working out, writing, meditating and that bleeds into the next two which is checking emails and returning phone calls.
The end of each day honestly depends on the day. It can vary from just going to sleep or working until the sun rises again. I absolutely must complete my 250 push-ups, or I feel like the day can’t end. Don’t listen to anyone who encourages you to put your mental or physical health at risk for the sake of money. It’s not worth it.”
2. Jae Scott, Founder of Passion to Purpose
As a recognized Forbes 2017 Nominee Finalist, Jae launched her first International Passion to Purpose Women’s Conference in Johannesburg, South Africa. Having an international business has shown Jae the importance of adaptability and self-care.
“A routine that has been essential to my business is waking up at 5 a.m. every morning. Also, it’s been necessary to be adaptable and available to schedule virtual meetings and phone calls to accommodate different time zones. The ability to accommodate at first was based on me forcing myself to rise at 5, then it became a routine and now it’s a habit.
I spend the first hour of my day meditating, praying and clearing my mind. It is essential that I stay in tune with myself and create a stream of energy that keeps me in tune and sets the tone for the day. I consider this my armor before I enter the world. I absolutely have to meditate daily and set time for myself. I have gone time and time again without doing it claiming myself to be so busy. Yet to be honest, even if I made myself just take 5 to 10 minutes to do it, I could see a major difference in my day and how things are being handled.
3. Robin Singletary, Owner & Brand Specialist for Bird’s Eye View
Robin has been in business for 8 years, spending the last three as a full-time entrepreneur. Her veteran experience has given her the wisdom to shape routines and establish systems that assist with managing business success, daily tasks, and personal life. Even though she works from home, taking a shower and getting dressed for the day are two important parts of her daily practice.
“I wake up around 6 a.m.; I can’t help it. I either do a devotional from the Bible App or meditate on the scripture of the day. It helps to start my day off right thanking God and asking Him to help me make an impact in someone’s life.
I get dressed like I’ve got somewhere to go. Even if my meeting is not until 2 p.m., I want to make sure I am ready in advance. (I strongly dislike rushing.) I get ready for the day by taking a shower, brushing my teeth, putting on a little makeup, eating a little something, then getting to work. Even if I don’t have a meeting scheduled, it is beneficial to look presentable for whatever the day may bring, an impromptu video, or anything else. Lastly, before I start my to-do list, I open all of my emails. I may not respond right away, but I at least want to keep track of project statuses, changes, etc.”
4. Laine B. Waller, CEO of Vraiment Financial
Within a year of leaving her job as a credit union representative, Laine hit 6 figures as a full-time entrepreneur. As an accomplished business-woman, mother and fiancé, establishing routines has been essential to Laine’s organization and business success.
“I wake at 6 a.m. and the first hour of the day I wash. Then, I open my mom’s bible, read a scripture and pray. I also give thanks for the things I have in my life and speak over what I know God will manifest for me. I don’t go on social media; I don’t check email. It’s just me and him having a conversation and it’s literally the best part of the day because it starts on a positive note.
Something I have to absolutely do daily in order to feel ready for the day is listen to a good podcast episode while I’m showering. No music, no silence. Just motivation and inspiration from another entrepreneur facing the same struggles I face.”
5. Justin Ross, Founder & Content Creator for Ross Multimedia Group, LLC
Being featured in U.S. Weekly for coverage of a celebrity wedding and solidifying corporate partnerships in the DMV are two accomplishments that give Justin’s business a stamp of approval. He believes success is the result of diligent preparation.
“I spend the first hour of my day with three things: spiritual music to set the atmosphere and tone for my day; prayer for covering, sustained spiritual connection and prosperity; and exercise to keep the body fit, agile and active.
The principle states, ‘People don’t plan to fail, they fail to plan.’ It is essential that you do what I like to call circumvention maintenance. This is the ability to do everything humanly possible on the front end, to eliminate hiccups on the back end. It requires lots of work, however it will eliminate a lot or even most of your obstacles later on.”
6. Autumn Myers, Founder & Editor-in-Chief of The Queen Sessions
In a little over two years, Autumn organically built a blog with over 2k readers. She’s had the same morning routine since age 17. (If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.) Autumn starts and ends her day intentionally.
“Every morning my prayer for life and growth always happens first. I find it necessary to thank God for all he did for me and currently does. Then I check my brand’s Instagram first because that’s where the content needs to be published. I look at the metrics and which content performed well. I am an analytics and metrics fiend. Next, I hop in the shower before heading to a coffee shop (it’s my daily walk). Finally, I work on what needs to be done for the rest of the day while playing some type of power anthem to get me in a good mood.
At night, I write down notes for the next day, see what messages I missed, put on some Hulu or Netflix (I love working with sound in the background). I give thanks for the day even if it was a crappy one. Then I knock out at least 5 tasks that I missed during the day. The tasks can be as little as answering the family emails.”
7. Simone Roundtree Harris, Wealth Manager for Equity Finance and Tax Services
Within her first year of business, Simone went from having just two clients to securing 100. She book-ends her days with morning and nightly routines believing that having a system helps with clarity and allows you to stay focused when you are experiencing dark days.
“I wake up every morning before 6 and start my day with prayer, meditation, tea, journaling and working out. Every day no matter where I am, I use this strict routine. At the end of the day, I reflect, journal, and plan the next day with tasks and goals I must accomplish. I also meditate before bed.”
8. Mike Nelson, Founder of The 9 to 5 Dropouts
Not only has Mike created a successful business of his own, he also launched a Facebook community with over 25,000 people working towards dropping their 9 to 5’s to become full-time entrepreneurs. To Mike, breaking the rush of corporate life is important to maintaining peace as an entrepreneur and tracking his business has been important to its success.
“Honestly the first hour of my day is spent laying in bed. I used to hate rushing to get out of bed when I was working my job. Now that I work for myself, I take in the blessing of being able to get out of bed when I feel like it. Once I do get up though, I’m usually heading up stairs to hop on the elliptical for 30 minutes and listen to either a podcast or audiobook.
Knowing my default is to just go with the flow, I know I have to fight that everyday especially at the end of the day. It’s key for me to plan for my next day. So, I make a quick list every night of three things that I want to get done the next day. This allows me to know what I have to do when I wake up. Without it, I could be laying in the bed for hours getting nothing done.
The routines that I’ve put in place is to check our company performance with my team on a weekly basis. We see if we hit our key performance indicators and what new goals we will set for the coming week. This allows the team to stay competitive but also gives me a real-time score of what’s going on in the business.”
*feature photo credit* – Photos by multiple photographers including Damon Rice and Thalia Nino