Monthly Archives: August 2014

Guide to Blackout Monday – Businesses

Blackout Monday


Picture this: you’re in a shop and you’re not sure what you want so you approach an employee for assistance. They are very helpful and you walk out thinking, I received great service, I’m definitely going back there. If you own a shop this is how you want all of your customers to feel. In the next few weeks you may experience more business and here are some tips on how you can ensure that your potential new customers keep coming back.


Customer service Values:

  • The customer is always right
  • Empathise with the customer as it may have happened to you before and it demonstrates understanding of the situation
  • Ensure the customer leaves feeling valued
  • The least you should provide as a shop is excellent customer service
  • If the product is not in stock offer an alternative or offer to order the product in
  • Greet them with a smile and a good morning or good afternoon
  • Great service means customer retention and more sales
  • Ensure all gaps on the shelves are filled, the big supermarkets and metro shops do not have gaps as it demonstrates that the shop has products, which may fulfill the customers needs.
  • If a customer is aggressive listen, evaluate and take action in a calm manner.
  • If a customer is purchasing a product, why not ask what they need the ingredient for and offer some tips and additional products they may purchase (if it’s a food shop)!
  • Treat customers and put on some offers that may entice people to your shop.
  • Ensure stock is rotated correctly with the oldest date at the back with the newest date at the front, ensure load lines are not exceeded as it can be unsafe.
  • Opening and closing as you know is important, opening time are key for customers. Being consistent and reliable means that you will get consistent and reliable custom. Close to closing time, politely inform the customers that you’re closing. A sign of opening and closing times should be clear and followed to gain and retain good business.
  • If a customer is on the phone, face to face or email, they should be valued as they may just be enquiring about a product. If the first impression is great then you will be hearing and possibly seeing them again.

As a black consumer, I hope you do well on Blackout Monday and that your business is a sustained success.

Guide to Blackout Monday – Consumer

Blackout Monday 2

As a consumer:

Our future is important, we need to buy at least 60% of our products from our own people. Otherwise, we will continue to have the lowest employment rate and very little self-empowerment. We won’t have any money to celebrate our culture and history unless someone else approves it first outside of our race.

It’s easy to have an idea without a plan of action or sound thoughts of how to process this. I’ve had a think and have thought of some ideas you might find useful:


It’s easier said than done to buy black from black businesses, but try at least 2 days before the blackout to purchase all products that are needed such as:

  • Food
  • Clothes
  • Hair Products
  • Tinned foods
  • Meat/fish

How to do this

Meat purchase from a black butchers (where possible) if the supply is limited try a meat free dish twice a week or used tinned meats (though it’s not recommended for health and possibly taste reasons)

Here are a couple ideas for meat free Caribbean dishes:


  • Hard dough bread toast and tea/water
  • Plantain (grilled or fried) and bread
  • Cornmeal porridge
  • Fruit and toast


  • Potatoes and salad
  • Salad and hard dough bread sandwich with avacardo or banana or a paste of choice


Each dinner dish can be served with some rice or Hard food, other food of choice


Go to black owned cash and carry shops or a local black owned shop for fruit and vegetables.

Another great source of Fruit and Vegetables can be your local or regional Black Market stall. You may be able to get deals on purchasing in bulk for you/and your family for this period of time.

Hair products/cosmetics

These can be purchased from black hair salons or the internet. If you live near a black area or market, there may be stalls with black people who sell our own foods.


These can be paid for through a post office, or company as normal.


It’s a necessity for work and school attendance, if possible use your own car, car share, cycle, use public transport, or Walk.


Entertainment and news is how we find out about things in the world. The world you live in can be different to everyone else’s, how about the world your ancestors created for you or our descendants. In this time the world can seem different when the information is provided by those who do not live your life.

There are some media sources such as newspapers, films and news, which can keep you informed and empowered to be positive. Seek out these items through local libraries or the internet.


The clothes we buy we usually need, how about if we buy from our own people who have an idea as to the type of clothes we want. If you require specific fittings you can go to a tailors. You can gain a good feeling when you buy from someone who’s practices and cultures are the same or similar to yourself.

Hello, again!

Hi there,

its been a while since I spoke, I have added a couple of new pages, these are under the educational tab on the menu and they are homeschooling  and Financial Education. These two pages are important in relation to social upliftment, social inclusion and economic development.

As a black person, I feel that the black community in the world, who are Diasporas, do not make the most of the financial capital which we posses. We generally use our social capital very well, but when it comes to retaining the money in our communities we tend to spend it elsewhere rather than supporting our own communities.

Some will say what I am saying is racist, though I deny this as I am using my regeneration and economic development experience and knowledge. Over the years I have gathered that in order for a community to develop there must be a bottom up effort from the members of that community to really tackle the heart of the communities problems.

My view is that there is a need for more small and medium black owned businesses in order for there to be some sustainable success within our communities. It’s impossible to live in another country and not contribute towards it.

The aim I envisage would be a 70:30 ratio in buying from your own community and buying outside, with the 70% of purchases being bought inside your community as a start, as we know our consumer needs, whilst the mainstream is not clear on this.

I have added the home school information as I am more and more convinced that black people cannot be educated successfully to our needs in the mainstream system. For example, I feel had I have stayed at home I would have remained a top student instead of falling down the order and only picking myself up at the age of 16 when I realised I needed to be socially mobile.

The need for home school and financial education fall hand in hand as black parents may run a business, and be able to pass financial information to their children on how to run a business, learn about life, be more confident with literacy, numeracy and science, and learn how to make sound financial investments, which will enable them to make a real impact in relation to the development of our own communities.

Besides a child only needs to learn for a few hours 1:1 as opposed to several hours in a class of 30 or 40 children, as children in private schools tend to have a greater quality of education if they have more time 1:1 with the teacher.

I hope you find this information useful and I’ll be speaking again very soon.

If your black, then please buy black and support your own as it will assist in your own economic, social and environmental survival more than you think

***Please support the Blackout Monday Campaign on Monday September 8th 2014***