When Dedra Phillips was planning her daughter Nia’s Sweet 16 party, she was consistently asked, “am I going to get a car?” But instead of buying Nia a new set of wheels, Phillips surprised her daughter with something that could take her further — a business.
“I thought to myself, I can always buy her a car. A business, however, could teach her many valuable lessons such as; how to lead, build a vision, time-management, team building, marketing, budgeting, investing, managing finances, customer service, and so much more. To be 16-years-old and learn these types of lessons is invaluable. It will serve her for the rest of her life. That is why I chose a business,” Phillips told Black Enterprise.
The business idea didn’t come from Phillips. It actually stemmed from a text conversation where Nia told her mother she wanted to sell lip gloss after watching a YouTube video and learning how to make it.
Phillips challenged her daughter to do more than simply sell lip gloss and instead turn it into a brand that could grow. The two came up with a brand name and products, but after that, they didn’t talk about it much.
A few months later when Nia’s Sweet 16 rolled around, she didn’t see a fancy car with a giant red bow waiting for her. Instead she was surprised with a table with her image and the brandname she and her mother came up with, alongside bottles of branded lip gloss and a full website ready to go.
“No, I didn’t get a car for my birthday, but as one of my friends at the party said, ‘You got a whole business for your 16th birthday, you could buy your own car soon',” says Nia on her website.
Phillips believes in supporting her daughter’s dreams and showing her that there there are multiple ways to achieve success.
“I want Nia to understand that she has options. If entrepreneurship is the road she wants to take. I will be her No. 1 supporter and the first to invest in her vision and future,” says Phillips to Black Enterprise. She continued, “We don’t see this enough in the Black community. Many of us are taught to go to college and get a good job. That’s not a bad thing. Even if you have a job, multiple streams of income are necessary in today’s economy.”
Ni’Abri Beauty carries an array of beauty products, from lip gloss to 3D lashes to lip stick.
You can find out more about the brand and how you can support the newly minted teenpreneur, Nia, at niabribeauty.com