“Budda Bing!”

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Dave Bing, a former Detroit Piston, was named one of NBA’s 50 Greatest Players of all time.  But his career didn’t stop there.  He went on to become a successful businessman and the founder of the Bing Group (http://www.binggroup.com/).  The Detroit area manufacturing company supplies automotive parts to suppliers.  The Bing Group is a “certified Detroit-based minority business enterprise dedicated to uplifting the community.”

Bing was born in Washington D.C. and it wasn’t until his days in the NBA that he was introduced to the city of Detroit.  Initially, Bing had the same pessimistic view of the city as did many others that weren’t from the area.  But it didn’t take long for Bing to call Detroit “home.”  Bing quickly established a passion for the city and wanted to be a part of the revitalization of Detroit.

Bing was also introduced to a world of business knowledge during his days as an athlete.    He learned the importance of teamwork.  He learned how to maximize his skills and integrate his teammates’ skills.  He knew to appreciate the skills his teammates brought to the table.  He was taught to surround himself with the skill level that he didn’t have.  Just as he needed a “center” on his sports team, he needed a “financial officer” on his business team.  “You can never forget how important your teammates are,” emphasized Bing.

In addition to surrounding yourself with the right people, Bing feels strongly about several other best practices.  Bing strongly suggests developing a business plan in the beginning.  However, he doesn’t believe in a 5 year business plan because things change so quickly.    He also believes in the importance in mentorship.  Mentors provide a person with a lot of insight and guidance.  A person must also have good contacts.  “Getting to know people with money is very key,” says Bing.  But the most important thing is people skills.  You must have employees that can get along.  Plus, people do business with people.  Every teammate must have people skills in order to excel. 

Bing believes that if you apply these business concepts and find an opportunity, you must jump in with both feet.  “Never be afraid to fail.  Your dreams and visions are achievable, so go after them,” he says.  “Entrepreneurs can shine during times of transition,” says Bing.  And this is our time to shine in Detroit.  

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