I never used to read. I always thought there was a video for everything. Once I started reading, I felt like a whole new world opened up for me. I learned from others experience and reading helped me by providing tips and tools found in the passage to help me in my life. Reading individual books is like a life hack course. A lot of the things I read help me learn from others journey. If it’s somewhere, I want to be, and I implemented it in my life. I’ve learned that fear prevents people from doing a lot of things. It’s natural for people to close off when they aren’t comfortable with changes. That’s where I was making a mistake. Change is going to happen. I love learned to be open-minded and embrace change.
As a part of my series about social media stars who are using their platform to make a significant social impact, I had the pleasure of interviewing Devon Horace, investor, personal finance, and business strategist, and founder of Horace Consulting, LLC. From $47,238.38 in debt to millionaire, Devon now helps other young professionals achieve their personal finance and business goals through Horace Consulting, LLC. His goal is to increase financial and business literacy in his community.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
When I graduated college in 2015, I had a large amount of student loan debt $ 37,238.38 to be exact. I was always engaged in social media, and I thought, maybe I can document this journey to get out debt to add to my content and find others out there like me. Through posting on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, I found there was a whole community out there of people paying off their student loan and consumer debts (credit cards, car loan, etc.) I knew this was something I can jump on board with and provide value.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began this career?
The most interesting thing that happen to me so far has been people coming up to me calling me “The Pasta Guy.” During my debt freedom journey, one way I was able to save money was cutting my grocery expenses down. I did that by eating pasta for a year straight. About $1.53 for the pasta and about $5.00 for the pasta sauce.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
Well, I wouldn’t say it’s the funniest, but one major mistake I made when I first started was not engaging with people who were leaving comments. I used to think, oh that’s cool, people like my post and I would just like their comments. I’ve learned that you MUST reply to ALL comments on your post. Not only does it help you build your brand and community, but it helps people know that you are real, and you appreciate their support.
Ok super. Let’s now jump to the core focus of our interview. Can you describe to our readers how you are using your platform to make a significant social impact?
I use my platform to teach others about business and finance for the everyday person. You always see memes and advertisements about “Get rich with these five steps” or things about passive income and cash flow for entrepreneurs. Yes, some of the material is good content, but it’s not for the everyday person. Some people want to know how to save a little more money each paycheck and how to write a business plan and file for an LLC. I’ve kept all my content through my journey of business and finance for people to look back at and refer too when they need help. If I can help just one person learn new things about business and finance, I hope they spread the message which will help others around them.
Wow! Can you tell us a story about a particular individual who was impacted by this cause?
Yes, this particular client asked to remain private, but I can share their story. One of my clients had $11,239 worth of credit card debt. I ask them, before hiring me as a consultant, to check out my profile and see if I may be a good fit for them. Once we got through that phase, I was able to partner with the client to come up with a plan to get rid of their debt. They did not like what they had to do to achieve their goal of being debt free, but I kept telling them to remember the bigger picture. It is just temporary. Through our engagement, I was able to teach the client about interest rates, loans, credit card factors and much more. It took my client 15 months to get rid of their debt, but thanks to their cooperation and trust they paid their debt off.
Was there a tipping point the made you decide to focus on this particular area? Can you share a story about that?
The tipping point was seeing how many people didn’t know how to achieve financial stability and common business goals. Student loan debt is about 1.5 trillion dollars. Some people can’t even go to college due to their sibling or parent(s) owing money themselves. I’ve learned that, due to credit scores, some people can’t even get a job because the score is so low. At this moment, I knew there was something that I could do. I don’t come from much. I am thankful to have had a roof over my head and clothes on my back, but the area I lived in was rough. I had friends who didn’t have clothes and lived in rougher places to afford rent. I know everyone is different, but I hoped if people like me, where I am from, can see me succeed they will be motivated to do so as well.
Are there three things the community/society/politicians can do help you address the root of the problem you are trying to solve?
I believe the community can offer more programs to teach about becoming a business owner and finances, teach children about finances in school and growing a business, and make data-driven decisions. We live in a capitalist country so it’s only so much you can ask from the government. But reparations for the black community would be a great start.
What specific strategies have you been using to promote and advance this cause? Can you recommend any good tips for people who want to follow your lead and use their social platform for a social good?
Some strategies I have been using to promote my cause is offering free advice on my social media platforms, being a part of speaking panels in different cities to pass on the message and being someone, people can contact about their questions in the field.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why? Please share a story or example for each.
I wish someone told me to keep fighting, never quit, read more, be open-minded, and to represent myself and others with the utmost respect because you never know what that person is going through. There were times I would feel like a particular goal was too hard. I would try, but I didn’t give it my all. And the moment I give up, I miss out on opportunities. I’ve now learned that things will be tough, things won’t go as planned as you thought it would, but never give up. Keep fighting. Know that this moment is just temporary. I never use to read. I always thought there was a video for everything. Once I started reading, I felt like a whole new world opened up for me. I learned from others experience and reading helped me by providing tips and tools found in the passage to help me in my life. Reading individual books is like a life hack course. A lot of the things I read help me learn from others journey. If it’s somewhere, I want to be, and I implemented it in my life. I’ve learned that fear prevents people from doing a lot of things. It’s natural for people to close off when they aren’t comfortable with changes. That’s where I was making a mistake. Change is going to happen. I love learned to be open-minded and embrace change. Once I started doing that, I took my personal growth to another level. You know the story where people tell you to be on your best behavior because you never know who’ll be your boss? Well, I have an account similar to that. I was interested in investing in this small business and on my way to meet the CEO at their office. On my way there I saw two women standing on the bus. One of the women was older, and I offered my seat. The younger lady refused for, the older women said they were ok, but I couldn’t accept that offer. I was taught to respect my elders and help open the door and or offer my seat to women. A bit old fashioned, but it’s a matter of respect. So, I told the younger lady, please take my place. If my mom would see me seated with two women standing in front of me, she would give me a whooping of a lifetime. She laughed and finally accepted my offer. We got off at the same stop, and I let them walk out ahead of me. We walked up to the same building, and I held the door open for them. And yes, you may have guessed it. The younger lady out of the two was the business owner. Since I showed her and her mother so much respect, she was willing to be open-minded about negotiations and accept me as a new partner. Sometimes it’s the little things that make a huge difference. Respect can be that difference.
You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
Wow! It would be the be somewhere in economic for the ADOS black community. I would want to be a part of decisions for the cost of living, wages, and wealth building opportunities in ADOS black communities around the country.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.” — Maya Angelou, this is relevant to my life because I grew up in a rough neighborhood, in a single parent household, and 1 of 8 children. My older siblings didn’t graduate school before me, and I didn’t have a blueprint to go further in life. I didn’t let that stop me. I knew if I wanted to change myself, I had to change the energy and environment around me. People, places, and things. I created my path to become motivation and hope for others.
Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂
Another big question! Well, if there were anyone, it would be Mark Cuban. I love his story, love his energy, and the man is smart. I feel like he can teach me so much and sit down with him having a real conversation may spark something in me. I hear him talk about money, business and being at the top of your game. It just gets me fired up and ready to take on the world. I never met him, but he’s my mentor.
How can our readers follow you on social media?
Please follow me on Instagram at @D.Horace Twitter at @D__Horace and LinkedIn at Devon Horace.
This was very meaningful, thank you so much!