Why It Matters
…that despite all the action, isn’t it cool, Black Panther marks a fascinating cultural moment with significant lessons for families?
Since the first teaser was released, a few months ago, the media has been raving about Black Panther. The anticipation peaked a few weeks ago, coinciding with our monthly movie date with Aunty Baby. So while the choice of movie, for our date, was obvious. Not being a crowd’s person, it took some convincing considering the anticipated huge attendance, before I agreed to go.
We arrived to a swell occasion at the theater; the charming audience, had people clad in their own interpretations of African fashion. The designs were stunning! It wasn’t so much about cosplay – dressing up as characters in the movie – but, the bewitchingly delightful designs which transformed the ambiance. The designs seemed to weave the past, and the present in some sort of African cultural storytelling. And though, I’m still waiting for the return of my optic nerves from the sheer [3D movie] sensory exhaustion. The ambiance was super, and the movie great, and uplifting. It’s these Black Panther moments, that have somehow dominated my thoughts – a good bit of this week.
Fast forward…, The film Black Panther is about a fictional never-before-colonized East African country, Wakanda [pronounced wah kan dah]. A large meteor of vibranium, crash-landed there, giving sacred powers to the territory, and which, is ultimately used by sacred medicine people to empower the King of Wakanda. The purple heart-shaped herbs, also gives Wakanda’s rulers spiritual access to the ancestors. The movie which delivers a genuinely powerful statement, wears its various themes, as lightly as T’Challa’s potent necklace, and borrows from [or is inspired by] real African cultures.
…….You certainly are missing something, if you haven’t watched Black Panther.
I must add, that this is not a review, or critique of the movie, but just me, drawing out valuable lessons from a movie ….and penning some…. Granted, it’s fiction, I however think, after watching this film, seekers of lessons who view it with eyes wide open will see things that they can point at and say: “Black Panther has some inspiration points. This is what we explore as we map a story of inspiration for entrepreneurial families.”
Inspiration points for Entrepreneurial Families
While watching Black Panther, we noted some Wakandan secrets, four which we wish to share with Entrepreneurial Families here including;
“A man who has not prepared his children for his death has failed severally as a father,” declared King T’Chaka to his son T’Challa..
This mystical, ancestral scene piqued my interest how King T’Chaka’s legacy would unfold during his reign as the new king of Wakanda. Preparing the next generation for leadership includes guidance on managing [family] resources and wealth.
In yet another thought provoking scene T’Challa’s mother, Queen Ramonda, also affirmed the parental [and community] influence in grooming T’Challa for his ascension to the throne. These affairs of the Wakandan royal family reflects similar situations in many families – the desire to build, protect and preserve the wealth as they execute the enterprise’s vision. The defining indicator of success for these leaders, is in the legacy inherited by their successors.
- Find value in the journey of life, and along the way, prepare your children to appreciate the benefits of a multi-generational family legacy.
- Don’t wait until death to teach [and share] the family’s wealth preservation principles.
- Have early and continuous conversations with your children about the responsibilities, sacrifices and investments you made to support the family and build a legacy.
- Help them understand how to run the family legacy and manage credit, budgets, savings and investing.
- Check on their progress and share your progress, too.
Costly omissions can surface beyond the grave. King T’Chaka failed to mention one crucial detail to T’Challa before his death!
King T’Chaka had killed his brother Prince N’Jobu a radicalized spy, and left N’Jobus’ son, Killmonger, in exile. In an act of revenge, Killmonger, assists the enemy steal vibranium, and returns to Wakanda to assume his rightful place as the king’s successor. A reign which is however short-lived; the kingdom fights a civil war [see as family feud] in order to reinstate King T’Challa as ruler.
- Are you afraid of what may surface or who may show up when the news of your death breaks?
- Avoid generational strife by owning up before you exit this world.
- Prepare your family, business and others for how you wish to be – fondly – remembered
- Don’t leave hell on Earth, when surely, you can create conditions for inspiring heaven on Earth.
Leadership on merit: females in the family can play a crucial role. Within seconds of T’Challas’ temporary defeat, Nakia [Lupita Nyongo] sees what needs to be done and simply does it, even if she doesn’t want or feel qualified.
No one really listens to her, except other women. Nakia says early on that Wakanda can, and should, share technical resources and extend aid/refuge to marginalized Black people …….everyone promptly dismisses or struggles with this. Until Killmonger shows up and says the same thing – only angrier. Suddenly, everyone in the audience raises a fist of solidarity. Any woman [and even men] who has ever been in a family group whose thoughts are dominated by certain agenda has lived this moment!
- Family leadership should be based on ability and interest not gender nor by merely being a son nor the first born.
Multi-generational responsibility for legacy Women, men, boys and girls tend to the sacred heart-shaped-herb, the other source of Wakandan might, and which imbues a person with the power to be the Black Panther.
- In short it’s an inter-generational collective responsibility to secure Wakandan [family] power and wealth.
As we exited the cinema, Aunty Baby appeared in deep thought. Little did we know, we were both occupied by the same thoughts until she asked. “Hey” she had began, “despite all the action, isn’t it cool that, Black Panther marks a fascinating cultural moment with significant lessons for enterprising families.” “Oh yes” I replied “More the reason to pay tribute to Wakanda Forever!”
So if your need to talk, we are specialists in Family-owned Enterprises, and are here to listen and provide you with solutions to ensure your legacy thrives for generations. .………over to you………
This article first appeared in my Linkedin profile