Take a Risk Without Being Risky
Grass Field's shared a lovely cup of lemon tea with Shade who is the creator of Afrobeats in Da City.
Shade created the website named Afrobeats in Da City in 2012. Afrobeats in Da City promotes, supports and gives African and Caribbean artist a platform to share their events, views and music.
The website is also a platform for Shade to write and shares her unique blogs that are based on African and Caribbean culture.
Shade was born and raised by African and Jamaican parents in London, UK. This gave Shade a good idea of the African and Jamaican culture because it is her own culture
We loved to hear Shades views on what drove her to start her company and what are the hopes Afrobeats in Da City will become.
I would say I am not the normal entrepreneur. I am not as free. I work full time in finance in central London. I love my job but its not what gets me excited. I think the lack of excitement is what drove me to decide to start something for myself.
The day I started my business was long before Afrobeat in Da City launched.
It all begin with a passion for event management. I had been involved in event management for years and I had given my time to many different events; often for free.
I think working as volunteer gave me the opportunity to be a follower and learn.
I started to discover while volunteering one important question
Why am I spending all my time, blood, sweat and tears to promote these events? It does not make sense because my voice is not reaching the masses. I am not sure if it is reaching my neighbour hood.
I begin to think of solution for a problem I wasn't sure I could fix.
I thought to myself. How can I promote events to a wider audience? But the people I reach must have a simpler interest as the people who normally attend the events that I promote?
In the beginning, there wasn't a clear aim of what I wanted to achieve. All I knew is that I needed a website that could provide event information for African and Caribbean people. This website would be a platform for African music, event and lifestyle.
This website would create a voice for the event manager. A voice for the artist. A voice for the African and Caribbean culture.
And that was it! It was that simple. I had created my very own business.
Well, it wasn't that simple. It wasn't simple at all.
The issue was that I would sometimes ask myself negative questions like-
Do I have the skill set?
Is there someone better than you to create this website?
Can you do this?
The answer was always the same Yes, I have the skills
Yes, there is always going to be someone more knowledgeable than yourself. But that doesn't matter because they can not recreate my passion.
And yes! Yes! Yes I can do this!
I reached out to people who I worked with in past and explained my idea. Some was supportive and others doubted me. All I knew is it had to come from me and only me.
I knew I had a great idea because every time I would mention what I was doing someone who wasn't supportive I had the same response
There is already a website like that then when I asked them to name the website? or find the website? they couldn't. This was because in UK we do not have much media specifically dedicated to African or Caribbean culture. A lot of "Black media" is often based on stereotyped and not devised to truly educate the audience of what African or Caribbean culture really is.
To educate is now Afrobeats in Da City aim. To educate, to reflect and to express African and Caribbean peoples point view.
Afro beats in Da City has become a platform were we can share, we can explore, we can connect and we can grow together.
I guess I would say I am an entrepreneur. I am a change-entrepreneur. I started my company for spiritual gain and change within my community and event management.
My advise would be you can take a risk without it being risky. Keep your full time job and on weekends and after work you can figure out your entrepreneur escape plan. Believe me, after starting my business my world changed. To be free. To be creative. To create something that people love is what drives me to make my business the best that it can be.
Afrobeats in Da City website is not worldwide or flashy but it is all my own. I share Afrobeats in Da City with you all.
Shade - Owner of Afrobeats in Da City