Krystal Garner is a woman of many talents. Actor, model, on-air personality, marketer, event manager, philanthropist, consummate basketball hoopster, winner of T.I.’s competition series ‘BET’s The Grand Hustle’, and currently the general manager of the Trap Museum, all describe roles Garner has played over the years. Garner has learned how to take control of her own life and embodies what it truly means to be a woman in charge of her own narrative.
We recently caught up with Garner at the 2nd Annual HER Idea Entrepreneurial Workshop/Summit in Detroit during the NAACP National Convention. The workshop centered around Black female millennial entrepreneurship, STEM, beauty, fitness and more . Read below to see what she shared about her experience working with Clifford T.I. Harris during BET’s The Grand Hustle, her role at the Trap Museum, being a brand ambassador and pitch competition judge for the NAACP’s HER Idea Summit and more.
What is one key take away you learned from your experience during BET’s The Grand Hustle?
The major take away I [learned] during BET’s The Grand Hustle was the confirmation that I am enough. Often, I used to downplay my abilities, resume and experiences. By being in elevated rooms, and still be able to shake and move, let me know that I belong at this table.
Everyone wants to know how it was working with Clifford “T.I.” Harris? What are some lessons he taught you that you will never forget?
I still work with TIP. He’s a dream employer because when you are a part of the team, your voice matters. Looking back at other times outside of my entrepreneurial efforts, I never really had a boss that pushed for my growth. Looking back, I believe they were intimidated by me and thought belittling me would keep me down, but instead it motivated me to excel higher.
Talk about your role at the Trap Museum. What does being the General Manager consist of?
Everything! We have a “roll up your sleeves” motto, so you can catch me in all positions at any given time. My main goal is to build my staff to be able to elevate with us or after their time with us.
Let’s talk about the Annual HER Idea workshop. What can we expect to see and hear?
You’ll learn tools that have worked for Black women entrepreneurs. Our goal is to motivate the Black woman business owner to not quit. We are the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs but lack training, sponsors and funding. The best way to end it, I believe, is to teach each other our successful ways.
What does being a brand ambassador for the NAACP’s HER Idea Summit mean to you?
Being the brand ambassador for NAACP’s HER idea summit is an honor. I only align with issues that I have a passion for. I’m a Black woman that has faced the double minority pain on both sides: workplace and entrepreneurship. Being able to teach women how to overcome the stumbling blocks and turn them into stepping stones makes me feel like I’m truly doing my part.
Black female millennial entrepreneurs are the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs, and they don’t have access to capital, business networks, and training. How does the HER Idea workshop address these known issues?
Each attendee gets to choose which track they want to follow. Through those tracks, they will engage in intimate conversations where they can ask specific questions and get direct answers. There’s also a business pitch competition where one lucky winner will get the opportunity to win seed money for their business.
As a HER pitch competition judge, what are you looking for?
I’m looking for someone who has passion for their product/service, a lot of research, and excellent delivery. I’m a firm believer of when you believe in your product and/or service, eventually the money will follow. You may have the best idea but lack the passion, passion will get you through the days of failures.
What are 3 pieces of advice you’d share with millennial women entrepreneurs?
- Get your paperwork! Make it real, not just something you say you do. Get those trademarks, bank accounts and everything to make it legit.
- Ask yourself ‘does this make me happy?’ Would you do this for the rest of your life for free?
- Never quit, it’s our time and the wins are coming.
What other projects are you working on?
Right now I’m working on two books, merchandise and a women’s mini-retreat series.
Where can we find you on social media?