Business
Beyond
Profit

The 2021 Update

A workshop and conversation for entrepreneurs, creatives, healers, and guides who are interested in exploring how to create and be in a business that honors people, history, and ourselves.


Facilitated by Toi Smith

A 2-hour replay of the live workshop which took place on
Sat, February 27, 2021

Business has a history.
A lineage.
A starting point.

The history of business that we’re often sold as true is the one that highlights and focuses solely on the bright side of business: innovation, growth, and profit. From that lens of business history, we're sold dreams of possibility, progress, and abundance.

And while yes, business can be a catalyst for change and possibility, what is purposely left out from the history of business is the exploitation, theft, erasure, and genocide that was needed as fuel for the innovation, growth, and profit that makes business so alluring. Essentially, the bright side and allure of business come at a deep cost to so many people and to so many lands.



Because the underbelly of business is rarely discussed and because we are socialized in an environment where exploitation and harm is the norm, when we become business owners we can unconsciously cultivate businesses that are full of business practices that perpetuate exploitation and harm. No matter how big or small our business may be.

If we seek to not perpetuate those harmful practices, with ourselves and with others, it’s crucial for us to take the time to unlearn the ways in which those business practices and ways of being tend to show up.

The good thing is that when we are in business for ourselves we have the opportunity to do things differently. We don’t have to follow the status quo which tells us that harm, exploitation, and extraction are perfectly fine as long we're making money

We can exist in our businesses in a more humane and equitable way. But first, we have to understand what we’re working with. We have to be able to be truthful about the systems that are shaping us and the history that is impacting us.



In Business BEyond Profit
we'll explore

The History Of Modern-Day Business As Influenced And Informed By The Plantation:
The plantation system was a global business enterprise that created a model for being in business that we still uphold and support today...we just don't know it.

What Profit Really Is And How It Influences Our Work And Motives:
A lot of people talk about profit but don't really know at the core what the word means and where it's derived from...we'll break it all down.

Ways Of Doing Things Differently So That We Don't Repeat History:
It is possible to be in business, share our work, and make a living without exploitation of ourselves and others we just have to be dedicated to the work and eager to try new ways of being.


We like to think of business as the place where we can be fully expressed, where we don’t have to have any responsibility outside of making money and living our best lives. But the truth is that we have a deep responsibility to understand the mechanisms of business if we desire a more equitable society.



About the 2021 workshop update

The first Business Beyond Profit workshop that I facilitated took place in 2020.

That first workshop was an expression of what I had learned and unlearned about business up until that point. It was a culmination of unpacking my work with clients, my work with self, and my critical analysis of the systems and structures that inform how we essentially operate in the world. Since that first workshop, I have learned so much more about the history of business, what it means to create a business, and what it means to share our work in the world.

The 2021 update is a more considered, deeper, and historically focused version of the original. I spent 2020 learning so much more about the roots of business, capitalism, and what we're sold as the normal ways to grow our businesses. This learning was cultivated through self-study and through numerous conversations with myself and with others. Over the year I grew in my awareness and this update reflects that growth while honoring and building upon the lessons that were presented in the original.

Books That Inform The 2021 Update
Below are the books that I learned from in support of this workshop.

The Hit Man's Dilemma: Or, Business, Personal And Impersonal
by Keith Hart

Black Labor White Wealth: The Search For Power and Economic Justice
by Claud Anderson

Capitalist Realism: Is There No Alternative?
by Mark Fisher

Sugar: The World Corrupted: From Slavery to Obesity
by James Walvin

Accounting for Slavery: Masters and Management
by Caitlin Rosenthal

A People's Guide To Capitalism: An Introduction to Marxist Economics
by Hadas Thier

The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism
by Edward E Baptist

The Six New Rules of Business: Creating Real Value in a Changing World
by Judy Samuelson

Socialism . . . Seriously: A Brief Guide to Human Liberation
by Danny Katch



Meet Toi Smith

I struggle to write a well-put-together bio that can encapsulate who I am because I do so very much.

At the core, I am a learner and a seeker. I am someone who is able to continually stretch my thinking for the future and encourage others to do the same. I hold possibility very close and I'm always looking for the path forward while being mindful of the obstacles and considering who is included and who is left out on that path.

For the last 5 years, I have worked in varying capacities with entrepreneurs who desire to reimagine business. I continue to work with people who are creating businesses out of their messages, passions, and artistry that are born from consciousness, awareness, possibility, relationship, and a deep belief in not perpetuating norms that are harmful and hurtful. They use their businesses as an answer to the question “what am I doing to benefit others while also sustaining myself?”

Beyond my work with entrepreneurs, I am a mother of four amazing sons who challenge what I think and who I be on a daily basis.



Business Beyond Profit Is For You If

You’re interested in making sure your business is not exploitative to you, your clients, or those who engage with it. No matter what your business may be.

You desire for your work and business to be about resistance, response, and change.

You want to erase the bright side veneer of business that you’ve been sold, in exchange for the truthful story of business so that you can be a better member of the collective.

You want to make sure that the money that you earn isn’t at the cost of the collective or in opposition of your values.

You’re clear that you want your business practices to support your deeper values and standards.



Business Beyond Profit:
The 2021 Update

Business Beyond Profit is a workshop and conversation for entrepreneurs, creatives, healers, and guides who are interested in exploring how to create and be in a business that honors people, history, and ourselves.

Facilitated by Toi Smith
A 2-hour replay of the live workshop which took place on
Sat, February 27, 2021

© Toi Marie, LLC // 2021 // All rights reserved.