Saturday, October 20, 2018- Overtown, FL / / Teens Exercising Extraordinary Success presented their first Lunch N Learn, on Saturday, October 20th at the Overtown Performing Arts Center, with high school seniors and college students from Miami Dade County. This quarter’s topic was centered around the “Science of Business.” Headliner Market Group and House of Wings were contributing sponsors to help create the ambiance of the Lunch N Learn. Students were greeted and given a name tag at the check in table. From there, students found a seat and started to network while being served free lunch provided by House of Wings.
Christopher Norwood, founder and CEO of Norwood Consulting Group, introduced a 20-minute clip from the documentary, Student Athlete, produced by Lebron James. Participating panelists included; Michael Gardner, CEO of Headliner Market Group, Mussaddiq Muhammad, founder/CEO House of Wings, Kristin Campbell, NFL Agent, CEO of 40 Sports & Entertainment Group, and Edgerrin James, Retired All Pro former NFL player. All panelists were able to relate personally to many topics in the film and shared their personal experiences or how the experiences resonated to someone they knew.
Kristin Campbell, a certified NFL Agent, and the first African American woman to successfully negotiate the contract to make two-time Pro Bowler and Atlanta Falcon, Devonta Freeman the highest paid Running Back in the NFL, stated “These guys are so wrapped up into making it to the NFL, once they do, and have this lump sum check, they don’t know what to do with it.” The documentary highlighted an incident at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill where athletes were placed into fake classes to maintain the GPA on the team’s roster. Mrs. Campbell went further to say, “All they know is I want to play football professionally, they forget to look at the bigger picture.” After, football or just in general life, when you want to create a business being financially smart is important.
When finding an investor for your company, creating a solid business plan is key. “You got to know what you’re talking about and know how you’re going to spend someone else’s money, if you don’t know how to spend it neither would your investor, if anything if the idea is good enough they might take your idea and actually come up with a strategic business plan.” Panelist Mussaddiq added. Each panelist had a different educational background. Campbell and Gardner obtained their degrees; Muhammad and James do not have a degree but have educated themselves through passion, hard work, and reading which has made them successful businessmen. Having a business takes the same amount of hard work regardless of whether or not you have a degree. Each panelist shared their struggles and mistakes which ultimately became the keys to their success. Gardner told the story of his first party where he lost all his investor’s money. “Trial and error is how I learned and it’s what has gotten me to where I currently am.” Muhammad said he loved chicken wings and after he realized he couldn’t become a lawyer, he decided why not make money from something I love. James stated that everything he has learned has been through reading, he told the audience that “Reading is the best mentor you will never meet”
There were many interesting stories and points made throughout the discussion. Afterwards students were given a chance to mix and mingle with the panelists, one on one. The engagement was so intense that everyone hung around for over an hour after the program ended, absorbing more jewels from the panelists. Be sure to be on the look out of the next T.E.E.S Lunch N Learn, you won’t only leave with more knowledge but also with a newfound understanding of what is required to be successful, directly from successful business owners.