Have you ever watched a television program, and within minutes of the opening scene, your mind shifted from entertainment enjoyment into a business model? As an R&B gal, the music in the documentary Hitsville: The Making of Motown had me clicking on it. The music became secondary to Berry Gordy’s resilience and business model, which had me grabbing a notebook and pen.

When you think of someone outpowering the odds, it’s Berry Gordy.

Though Berry quit high school to become a boxer, that dream ended when he served in the Korea War. Using his savings from his military pay and family help, he opened a jazz record store. Two years later, the store went bankrupt because customers wanted rock ‘n roll. With a failed business, he became an assembly line worker at the Ford Motor Company. Not giving up his jazz passion, he wrote several songs for a local woman, Jackie Wilson. When one of his songs became a big hit, the New York publisher refused to pay Berry royalties owed.

Although we know the outcome of Berry’s story, imagine how devasting it would be getting hit with one major adversity after another. Failure can drain you; it can crush you.

“If you have no control, you have no power.” – Berry Gordy, Jr.

Or you can use failure as the momentum to Bounce-Up™. The circumstances with the publisher became the beginning.

  • Berry recognized the automobile assembly line concept. A bare metal frame came down the line and came out the other end a brand new car. He imagined he could take that same concept and apply it to his music.

Without the jazz store failure, Berry wouldn’t have been in the Ford plant. He wouldn’t have observed the production cycle. He wouldn’t have visualized Berry Gordy’s Motown Business Model.

Has a failure ever set you in a different direction that became better than what you left behind? Although my circumstances were different than Berry’s, if I hadn’t been diagnosed with cancer, I would never have created the Bounce-Up™ brand and the products under this umbrella.

When the publishing house did Berry wrong, he thought he didn’t have control. He had more control than he realized. He had power in one crucial area for success—his mindset.

Bounce-Up™ Momentum Builders:

  1. What circumstances can you view differently?
  2. When does your mindset need more positive determination?
  3. What can you do to be more open to innovation?

Mj Happenings

What a fantastic experience I had sharing my message with Business Notes host Diane Bogino last week. Check out the tips and the “why” behind my business on Business Notes.

Until next time, have a Bounce-Up day!


P.S. I’m working behind-the-scenes on a big project! Will share the excitement soon.