We had the good fortune of connecting with Samaria Howard and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Samaria, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Risk taking: how do you think about risk, what role has taking risks played in your life/career?

I love taking risk . I am an extreme risk taker . I will do something very risky to get me out of my comfort zone and challenge myself . I know most people are scared to take risk because they are unsure of the outcome. I believe life is all about taking risk and doing something different .

I’m probably the biggest risk taker in my family . I will pick up and move anywhere, I’m not afraid to meet new people or try different things . I’m the fearless friend . I’ve lived in the smallest towns, the biggest cities , different countries where no one spoke the same language as me.

Taking risk is about being open to change . Change is good even though it’s scary

I’m not afraid to fail of course I know it s a possibility . But when I take a risk and I put myself out there I’m very optimistic. I’m not thinking about failing or messing up. . I’m thinking positive.

Most people want to play it safe , stay in their comfort zone but that’s not me at all . Even starting a business is risky . Once you quit your job and do everything on your own it’s very scary . For example i took a risk moving to Atlanta to start my business . I didn’t come to find a job or career. As a matter of fact I didn’t have a job when I came here because I had a vision of what I wanted for my business. I worked part time so I could pay my rent but i was solely focused on my business.

I quit a full time job that I had in Florida to come to Atlanta . I didn’t have a full time job in Atlanta when I first got here. It was very risky because I wasn’t making as much money as I was before . I was also working on my business so at the same time; I had to find clients and build everything from scratch which was very frustrating and stressful.

I didn’t have nearly as much confidence as I do now . I was scared to put myself out there and talk to people I didn’t know. I had to constantly sell myself and my program which was actually intimidating at the beginning. I got turned down hundreds of times but I had to do it because this was something I really wanted to do. I am a very shy person believe it or not . But for the most part I grew out of it because I talk to so many people . I have to speak to large groups of people all day, everyday and I have to say that it has really boosted my confidence.

Even with selling my program to parents I am more than confident now . I can walk up to any parent and present my program . But that took a lot of time patience and most importantly mental toughness

Please tell us more about your work. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
I absolutely love what I do. If people knew the half of what I’ve been through with my business they’d be surprised that I haven’t given up. I think what sets me apart is my perseverance. No matter what it is that I’m faced with I won’t quit.

I’m very proud of how I’ve grown as a person . I never thought I would have been this way, I’ve changed so much but in a major way.

How I got to where I am today business wise is because I had a circle of people that shared the same beliefs as me and believed in me. At the same time, we believed in each other and pushed each other to be different.

I have learned so many lessons.
1. I’ve learned time is more valuable than money. Time is your biggest asset so whatever it is you want to start, you have to start now.

Don’t waste your own time and don’t let others waste your time. Every minute counts. Don’t sit around twiddling your thumbs.

2. Be consistent. Confucius says “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop”. People think when they first start their business they’re going to be making all this money and be a millionaire after the first year. They end up quitting because they’re not getting the results they’re looking for right away.

3. Don’t get too high on the highs and too low on the lows . Running a business is like an emotional roller coaster . One week you might be up and the next week you might be down but if you dwell too much on the good or too much on the bad you won’t be able to bounce back quick enough to make changes.

4. Don’t take anything personal. You have to have tough skin. If you let someone telling you “no” get too you then you won’t be successful. For every 1 yes, I probably got 10 no’s . But I still tell the person “thank you have a great day” or “ Awesome! Is it okay if you I still take your information in case things change in the future?” I have actually followed back up with several people who have turned me down in the past and closed them as clients several months down the line.

5. You have to be mentally tough . That sorta goes with the previous response I gave about having tough skin.
Having a business is the hardest thing I have done in my life . It’s all in your head. A mentally weak person will not make it in the business world.

6. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else. Don’t even look at what someone else is doing . Have tunnel vision.

I just want the world to know that Be Great Sports isn’t just a training program. It’s a program of great students who aspire to be something in life. We do things out in the community , we are always doing something to give back. The brand is not just to make these students better athletes but most importantly successful people. Before they sign up they get a packet and they have to describe to their coach what success means to them and what they will do to get there.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
We would eat at a soul food restaurant called The Manna House Cafe. Best soul food in Atlanta! We would also eat at Benihana. I love Hibachi! There’s another restaurant we can eat and hang out at . It’s right downtown called BQE restaurant. They have great music and serve chicken and red velvet waffles! Definitely going to go hang out at Piedmont park. We will spend a day at six flags and get on all The rides until we can’t ride anymore!

For a more chill day we’ll go to skyline park and hang out on the rooftop.

Atlantic Station is also somewhere we’ll visit. Tons of shops , and of course the movie theatre

Another exciting place to visit is the Georgia Aquarium and tiny doors atl

Interesting people to check out would be Tyler Perry & TI.

Interesting things would be Martin Luther Kings birth home , and the trap music museum

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Yes I want to give a couple of shout-outs! First to God because the things he’s done in my life have been amazing . My mother and father because they’ve never doubted me. They’ve always pushed me hard since I was a kid. My mom actually flew out here last minute to help me run a camp. Believe it or not in the future she plans to help me run my business. That’s something I’m extremely excited about.
My Bestfriend Safiya; she is a business owner as well and has always been supportive of me. She’s great to have in my corner because she understands a lot of what I go through that not a lot of other people do.

My mentor- Coach Nabers
Coach nabers is my business coach and this guy is amazing . He’s taught me amazing strategies to implement into my business , he’s there to answer any questions I have , he’s very encouraging and wants to see everyone he mentors exceed. You can tell he really cares about you. I’ve learned so much from this man and he truly has turned my business around

Website: begreatbasketball.com

Instagram: @begreatsports

Facebook: Begreatsports

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