TheBlackManCan is making its way back to Houston, Texas to bring you another EXTRAordinary Black Man. We proudly present Real Estate Mogul and Motivational Speaker Anthony Ford. Anthony Ford is not only the owner of a successful “house flipping” company (REC Houston) that teaches ordinary people how to FLIP houses for profit but he is also a “life saver”. Anthony volunteers his time every week by visiting and mentoring at risk and poverty stricken youth at a Houston Area High School as well as hosts several community events, feeding the poor and homeless and clothing those kids whose parents can’t provide them with decent clothing. He is also the author of the forthcoming business book “Stand Apart” which is due to hit shelves in January 2014 where he stresses the importance of taking what you’ve learned through dire situations and twisting it to starting a business as well as living a life that truly “Stands Apart” from the rest! Anthony sits down with TheBlackManCan to discuss his Foundation, the #fordhustle movement, entrepreneurship and advice for young black man.
TheBlackManCan: Tell us about the #fordhustle movement? What is the mission and vision behind this movement?
AF: The #fordhustle movement derived from a nickname that everyone who knew me had given me. They gave me that name because every time they looked up I had my hands in some type of new business venture or was apart of some new idea of some sort. So it wasn’t long after I received this nickname that I started the #fordhustle movement. There are two components to the #fordhustle movement-The first component is teaching my kids and my younger siblings how to become successful entrepreneurs by starting their own business and applying the hustle and ingenuity necessary but comprising it with what they’ve learned scholastically to see that their business thrives and therefore leaving a legacy behind. Then the other component to the #fordhustle movement is to teach my kids and siblings how to give back to the communities that made us who we are today by going back and feeding and clothing the homeless and under privileged families that are awe stricken and less fortunate than we are. This movement however is just not for my family; it’s for anyone who wants to learn how to be successful in business yet has a heart to serve those who are struggling!
TheBlackManCan: How did you develop your entrepreneurial spirit?
AF: I developed my entrepreneurial spirit from my dad, he was a “go out and do it and get it by all means” type of person, he owned a few businesses when I was a young kid and would give me a chance to run and operate those businesses in the summer while I was out of school and that gave me the spark to be an entrepreneur.
TheBlackManCan: How does one go about building an entrepreneurial spirit and why is it important to have one?
AF: I don’t believe that a person could build an entrepreneur spirit until they’ve first prioritized their life into what their lifelong goals are and then have taken the time to assess their risk tolerance. Once a person has done these things then they could enter entrepreneurship. I think that its important to have an entrepreneurship attitude because it is almost, and I stress “almost, the only way that you could live securely in the present and leave a legacy in the future.
TheBlackManCan: You have a successful Real Estate Company. Why did you choose Real Estate?
AF: I chose real estate because of where I’m from! I’m from a neighborhood where most of my people are renters versus homeowners and so since I am a trailblazer type of person-I strive to be different, to stand apart! In an effort to be different; I purchased my first home at the age of 22 but I went through some difficult times when purchasing my first home because I had a lazy and unprofessional Realtor who through her poor work ethic; caused me to loose a home that I had custom built from the ground up, at that time I was 21 yrs old and didn’t know much about real estate but I knew enough to know that she was the reason that I lost my home, it took me almost a year to bounce back from the hurt and damage that she had caused. From then on I knew that I wanted to be in real estate so that others wouldn’t have to go through the same misfortune that I had went through while trying to purchase a home for the first time, for I would be the Realtor that would go to the ends of the Earth to get my clients to become homeowners!
TheBlackManCan: What are some essential skills that are needed to be successful in the field?
AF: To be successful in real estate you have to be tenacious and ready to work day in and day out, innovative, different in your thinking, a net-worker and a marketing genius!!
TheBlackManCan: Why should young men look to own a home and not rent?
AF: I feel as if young men should own a home versus renting one for several reasons; but the main reason being that as men you ought to aspire to leave legacies for the generation that is to come after you-leaving an asset such as a home is a great legacy item. With a home being one of the greatest assets that a human can obtain; I’d admonish every young man out there to have one of his family heirlooms be a home.
TheBlackManCan: Tell us about the Teleois Foundation. What does the word Teleois mean?
AF: The word Teleios means to “reach its end”; to discover your divine purpose in life.
TheBlackManCan: What is the focus on your foundation?
AF: The focus of my Teleios foundation is to take school aged teens that are in gangs and have criminal and drug charges and turn their life around by helping them to discover who they really are and why they were placed on this Earth. Once I teach them this; two things happen: First, they start to live a more meaningful life which keeps them away from drugs and criminal activities and then Secondly, I teach them how to mentor other kids that are in similar situations as they once were; by helping them to discover their meaning in life just as I have done for them. I walked four kids across the stage last school year that otherwise would not have graduated had it not been for my program!
TheBlackManCan: You live a life of lifting as you climb. Why should more people embrace this thought process?
AF: Well I believe in “lifting as you climb” simply because I feel as if God has granted me success and elevation as a means to show others the way. He didn’t make me successful so that I could brag, boast or promote myself but he made me successful to show others that they too can get to where I am. Actually I feel as if everyone should adopt this principle of lifting as you climb because before they were successful-someone had to show them the way; so why not pay it forward!
TheBlackManCan: Mentoring plays a vital role in the development of people. Why is mentoring important to you?
AF: Mentoring is important to me because mentoring is the only way that a person could gain a wealth of wisdom and knowledge without ever having to go through the bumps, bruises and experiences that it normally takes to gain such insight! Mentoring is a quick and insurmountable way to attach yourself to the positive vibes and teachings of another person that’s greater than you are or that’s at a place where you’re trying to be!
TheBlackManCan: Who are some of your mentors?
AF: My Pastor and my previous barber are my mentors..
TheBlackManCan: Where do you see yourself and your endeavors in the next five years?
AF: Within the next 5 years I see myself leading thousands of people down the road to a more meaningful and successful life here on Earth…I see myself producing reality shows that promotes positive living, entrepreneurship and concepts of paying it forward!
TheBlackManCan: Why do Black Men and Boys need to see positive images of themselves?
AF: It’s very important for other black men and boys to see positive images of themselves because I think that society has ostracized black men to be culprits and menaces to society whereas most black men and boys have sublimely accepted that mantra to be true! We need to flood our society with images of those black men that ARE making a difference in the world, the black men that ARE standing up for the right causes and that are mentoring and empowering other black men and boys to do the same!
TheBlackManCan: What words of advice do you have for young men Black Men of today?
AF: My advice to the Black men of today is to use your influence in a positive way! Black Men are amongst the strongest of this world, for whatever it is that we as black men would like to do-the world actually embraces it. If we sag our pants and become rappers, the entire world (all ethnicities) copies our actions. If we want to become the president of the U.S.-the world supports us. So If we could take that same influence and do some positive things in the world, we’d be dangerous-in a good way!
Check out Anthony on the Web: