Black Americans are doing better than most people are willing to admit.

The sense of pride I felt while watching the opening ceremony for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics took me back to my proudest moment as a newly elected Southlake city councilman in July 2019, at the city’s Stars and Stripes Celebration on July 3.

“Brother, brother — you’re a councilman?” said a gentleman who approached me as I walked through the crowd. “I’m proud of you. I’m from Nigeria. People say, ‘Nigeria?! What a great country.’ …

I grew up with parents who were pillars of the community, active supporters of those around them, seeing anyone and everyone as neighbors. Without realizing it, their willingness to serve and to lead made an indelible impact on me.

For example, within three months of moving to Southlake, I contacted the city to become involved, and ultimately applied for an appointed position.

Nearly seven years and numerous positions later, I’m glad I stepped up to be involved in our schools and in our community, most notably as a city councilman.

Southlake is a special place, and I wouldn’t want to…

The state of Texas has lost more than 15% of its restaurants, and more are likely to be shuttered, having fallen victim to the lockdown that ensued as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Since the start of the pandemic response, we’ve lost 15,000 restaurants, with that number projected to increase over the coming months,” says Dr. Emily Williams Knight, President, and CEO of the Texas Restaurant Association.

The alarming news makes clear that our local restaurants continue to need our support, particularly since months of tough times are still ahead. …

Being a black politician often means more expectations and less support.

The worst part of being a black politician is having more pressure placed upon you, especially from so-called supporters, than is rightly deserved. That’s not a complaint; it’s a fact, one that often dooms blacks who enter politics to failure.

I write that not as a complaint, but as a reality.

So many of us — myself included — enter public office with hopes of doing good, being a real agent for change for those — regardless of race, ethnicity or religion — who need it most. Yet, too often folks judge us only by what we do for blacks.

There is no best system, but I have a few thoughts.

I endeavor to read 20,000 words each day. I’m often not successful, but it’s a worthwhile pursuit, one I would not care to change. Many of those words come from books, which—as a dyed-in-the-wool bibliophile—are my preferred means of consuming content.

“How do you retain what you read from books?” is a question I receive often.

What my system lacks in complexity it more than makes up for with effectiveness.

For hard copies…

I use a copious supply of Sticky Notes while reading actual books, annotating important points, including novel or compelling…

The push to remove testing as a so-called barrier to education for black and brown kids is creating more problems than it solves.

A recent WSJ post highlights the further assault on the SAT, which many colleges have stopped requiring for those applying to their schools.

The push to do away with testing has mainly been waged by folks who ostensibly assume that eschewing testing makes it more likely that black and brown kids will gain admittance to college, even some of the most selective colleges, an honor most are not privy to owing to their families’ inability to afford…

Your small business’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic will likely determine how well your brand comes out of it on the other side. With much of the country shut down for school, travel and work, would-be consumers suddenly have lots of time on their hands. Not surprisingly, some of that time will be spent looking to see how the world around them is handling the COVID-19 pandemic.

Business’s responses will especially stick out, given that furloughs and layoffs are feared results. But, be careful, with how you handle, share and talk about these changes, especially given how tough job losses…

Local retailers are looking to convince shoppers to return during the COVID-19 pandemic, but they face a tough task ahead. Despite being at wits-end after being cooped up for two months, people won’t easily cotton to the idea of spending any time soon, as fears about the virus are now being outweighed by concerns over the economy.

Many of the nation’s leading experts are predicting the U.S. economy to look a lot like a Nike Swoosh during the recovery phase. That is, having a long, slow climb following the downturn we’re currently experiencing at the hands of COVID-19.

Said Mark…

Legendary strength coach Mike Boyle tells the story of a young athlete who reports not being able to tolerate squats. “They make my back hurt,” he says. The coach wisely asks for a demonstration.

“Squats don’t hurt your back,” said Boyle after seeing the athlete’s improper squat. “What you’re doing and calling a squat is hurting your back.”

Which brings me to Tiger Woods, who last week said running 30 miles a week during the first five years of his career ruined his body.

Tiger Woods answers your questions 🤳#AskTiger

- GOLFTV (@GOLFTV) May 1, 2020

While that distance…

I studied business disruption in college; I never planned to become familiar with it firsthand.

Shortly before Christmas of 2010, I was fired.

Though the memories of that fateful day are in no way painful, they are vivid, illuminating and more funny than sad.

Sure, I remember the brief talk with my boss and the head of HR. But what sticks out most is what happened immediately before and immediately after the talk:

  1. I’d just returned from the office kitchen, where I’d put away a fritatta and a small (OK, it was actually sizable) bowl of fruit. …

Ronell Smith

I’m a consultant who helps SMBs, startups and mature brands reach, acquire, and grow their audiences through content strategy.

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