#BlkWomeninBiz: Emerald Sparks

The idea of working for 40 years, at set hours, with minimal personal time was never in the cards for Emerald. She knew she wanted more, but initially did not think entrepreneurship would be her calling.

Emerald is from Dayton, OH and received her Bachelor’s of Administration with a specialization in Accounting from The Ohio State University. After accepting the fact that she could never live her life the way she wanted in the corporate world, she ventured out and started her first business; an online clothing and shoe boutique.

Unfortunately, the business ended quickly because she was not ready to step out of her comfort zone and promote herself or the business. On top of that, it just was not her passion.

After this came a lot of soul searching. She read Steve Harvey’s book, Act Like A Success, Think Like A Success, and consulted with some of her friends and family. She asked them to give her a list of what they thought she was good at, and it all led back to finances. She always loved money – not in a materialistic way, but more like, “Hey, I’m good at this!”

She started researching other professionals in the industry to create her pricing structure. In addition, she researched techniques, procedures, systems, and began to develop her own unique style financial planning and consulting style. After working in her “business” for months unofficially, she applied for her LLC and began to launch her brand.

Emerald now offers a variety of courses that focus on financial review and strategy, financial planning, coaching, and credit restoration. She is even a published author and wrote the book Vision. Future. Reality: How to Budget Like a Boss; a quick read, self-help book geared towards helping you achieve your financial vision and goals.

As many entrepreneurs know, the journey is far from easy.

“From the lack of funds and the lack of support sometimes, you just want to give up and apply for jobs! And I have! I have applied for jobs and haven’t heard anything back. They say rejection is God’s biggest blessing so I remain patient and prayed up.”

Emerald has managed to stay faithful and resilient throughout her journey as a black woman in business. She recognizes that while we are not yet equal, it is still an amazing, and necessary, opportunity to “have a seat at the entrepreneurial table.” 

When asked her advice to others who may be interested in pursuing a similar career path:

“Entrepreneurship is more time and dedication than it is money. So don’t do it if you only want to make money, do it because you actually want to change lives. Be genuine in that and everything will fall into place.”

Emerald, thank you for being a black woman in business! You refused to accept the typical lifestyle and walked out on faith. For that, I applaud you!

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