I’ve been reading a book by Robert L. Wallace entitled ” Soul Food: 52 Principles of Black Entrepreneurial Success.” I’m pretty sure a lot of you are stuck on your entrepreneurial journey and are unsure of what the next step may be, just like myself! So let me be your tour guide for just one second. I have taken the liberty of researching a few things and wanted to introduce the “Jockey vs. Horse” theory, which counts as Principle number 2 in Wallace’s book.
For those who don’t know, jockeys are the riders who control the horses during track races. In this particular situation, the ‘jockey’ represents you and the ‘horse’ signifies your million-dollar idea or product. As the entrepreneur, you have full control of the idea or product because you stand as the creator.
Now, you might think that to perfect your product or idea it should be gift wrapped and tied with the prettiest bow you can find. Then once you take it to the recipient, you pray they love it. Until they ask, “So, what do you think about the gift? What made you pick it out?” Immediately, you want to tell them why it’s ideal for them.
You’re stuck again aren’t you?! Let me explain further! Investors are no longer interested in the product itself, but more so the person behind it. Their thoughts are, “What is the brainchild able to create without their bright idea and are they capable of doing more?“
Simply put, Can the jockey transform five other horses just like the one that they are most proud of?
Think of it this way: The capability of building one product is no longer worth anything, being able to conceive multiple winning ideas is what you should seek to do. The inventor is more important than the invention. Sell your background, your skills, talent and work ethic. Sell yourself as a person. That’s what investors are looking for! The product or idea is merely an accessory to the complete purchase.
So when you spend all your time deciding which outfit you are going to wear or which work sample you are going to take, be prepared for this infamous question first: “So tell me a little about YOURSELF and what YOU can bring to the table?”