¡Llamando a todos los emprendedores!
Language isn’t a barrier to entrepreneurial spirit, Adrienne Haynes said, and it shouldn’t prevent Kansas Citians from finding business success just because they don’t understand the nuances of startup lingo or legal processes.
“Whether you’re a black- or brown-owned company, whether you’re woman-owned, whether Spanish is your primary language, or any other language, we should have the type of community that provides resources for people in the way that they can best achieve success,” said Haynes, SEED Law managing partner.
A Spanish-language business law for entrepreneurs class led by Haynes is set for 6 p.m. Sept. 26 at the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Greater Kansas City. The free course is the third in a three-part series, but is the first to be offered in Spanish.
“In my experience, many of the business owners who will come to a Spanish-only class also speak English, but maybe not at the level that would allow them to directly apply what they’re learning into the business that they’re growing,” Haynes said.
Business law topics for the course include choice of entity, managing contractual obligations, protecting intellectual property, and compliance with employment law. The purpose largely is to build confidence in decision making, protect rights, minimize risk and save business owners money, according to its course description.
Aspiring entrepreneurs in a connected community like Kansas City shouldn’t have to stop to ask themselves, “Wait. What does this really mean in my language?” she said.
“We, of course, have all these resources in English too, but why not offer them in multiple languages if we can?” Haynes said. “We are part of a multicultural community and we need to make sure all entrepreneurs are supported.”
A Spanish major in college, Haynes said she’s nervous, but excited to lead the course. It isn’t her first time developing an educational structure in a language other than English. While part of the Blue Hills Contractor Incubator, she helped craft a 12- to 14-class Spanish-language curriculum for construction education. (Though it was not implemented at the time, she said the curriculum could be a workable project for the future.)
The experience taught Haynes the value of breaking through lingo — the everyday jargon that could be unintentionally stalling confidence and access to the startup community.
“Contractors don’t necessarily think of themselves as ‘entrepreneurs,’ although they are very entrepreneurial,” she said. “Being able to communicate in a way that helps people with easy, on-the-go, practical business education is always worthwhile.”
Haynes’ Spanish-language business law class is just the first step, she said. A solid group of individuals are hungry for more resources to succeed, and the Kansas City community is strong enough and talented enough to provide services to them.
“If anybody else is interested in or is already doing business education in Spanish or any other languages, I would love to combine efforts,” she said. “If it’s happening in multiple places, we should find a way to compile and share.”