Angela Yee is most recognized for her role as former co-host of “The Breakfast Club,” but she is also a successful businesswoman.
She owns three physical businesses that focus on nutrition, education, and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).
Yee's Coffee Uplifts People, Drink Fresh Juice, and Private Label are all locally owned and operated businesses with a largely Black workforce.
Here are some excerpts from a recent chat about diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) with this media star/entrepreneur.
Did you stumble onto entrepreneurship or make the decision to pursue it?
Without realizing it, I was an entrepreneur. As a Wu-Tang Clan aide, I have a variety of side projects.
I was the queen of side hustles. Biographies of artists were a sideline. My prior job was in the marketing field.
I started freelancing after leaving that job. Full-time job earned less than freelancing.
What are the advantages of writing for businesspeople?
Writing is an important skill to have, especially if you work in marketing, advertising, or radio as I do.
Entrepreneurs can make or lose their businesses by writing a proposal, pitch, or meeting request email.
Has your business been influenced by the fact that you are a woman of color?
Absolutely. Imposter syndrome complicates things.
I used to be a sidekick on the radio. The majority of my jobs were all female.
In the Breakfast Club studio, [I was still] the only woman. I [made] a concerted effort to establish myself. It's all about fairness.
What has been your greatest challenge and triumph as a woman of color founder?
If you appear to be filling a quota, people may not take you seriously.
My sisterhood has been important in my success. A widespread misconception is that black women do not support one another. Women have aided, collaborated, and boosted my confidence.
My most ardent supporters have always been black women.
What advice would you provide to other Black women who want to start their own business?
Make a request for assistance. Black women often believe that seeking help is a sign of weakness.
Learn how to pitch and put together a deck.
You recruit and support Black-owned businesses. What is the importance of this?
I'm hoping they start businesses. Black-owned firms aren't competing with each other.
I take and upload photos of Black-owned coffee shops and juice bars on the internet. Everyone has the ability to succeed.
My Brooklyn businesses are focused on health and nutrition. Before the pandemic, my juice bar hosted various events.
I work at the New York Public Library and support reading and literature. Reading and health are two things that I am passionate about.
In my coffee shop and juice bar, I highlight the health benefits of coffee and juice.
My juice bar is fantastic. It has an impact on people's lives.
How do your responsibilities as a radio broadcaster and a business owner intersect?
In The Breakfast Club, [I was] always the first one there.
Lateness is inconsiderate of listeners, meeting participants, and other people's time. My extensive research has given me a well-rounded perspective.
In the big picture, health, culture, finance, and NFTs all help me.
Many people claim to be ignorant about a variety of topics. I enjoy having a wide range of knowledge. I need to be among a variety of people and keep up with current events in the world.
Others don't know as much as I do.
Is there anything else?
Well Read is an organization that promotes health and literacy.
Give back as you accomplish. On social media, positive comments and sharing about other businesses are quite important.
Friends and relatives can offer advice, encouragement, and support.