Hector Barreto - Entrepreneurship and Immigrants

The Strategerist


Welcomed or guest today, Hector Baretto Hector form headed up the United States. Small Business Administration today. He's the chairman of the Latino Coalition. Thanks for waking up early with us. Do this actor thank you in our Co host Laura Collins, once again. Welcome back, Laura. She's the director in the Bush. Institute smu Economic Growth Initiative thank you. Thank Santa I. Only wake up early for this I know we. To Peel back the curtain we're here at about seven thirty in the morning in Dallas and Lauren I were comparing notes and turns out that one of us are morning. People so hector. We're looking. We're looking at you. Demand on. West Coast time. It's like five thirty in your body clock Oh. That's rough. Hector's here for our SME Economic Growth Advisory Council where he is one of them. Is that help guide the policy work that we do at the Bush Institute, because both of his expertise is the forty first administrator, the small business, and because his work with the Latino Coalition. Let's start with the former when you were with the small business administration. What was the goal of that department? What were you? You, all working on the small business. Administration was actually started in one, thousand, nine, hundred, fifty, three by President Eisenhower and there were some small business programs before that, but they unified those all into one agency, and it's really the agency that supports and advocates for America's small businesses, and that role has become even more important over the years when they formed the SBA. There probably weren't thinking that was going to be over thirty million small businesses in the united. United States and I like to say nothing small about small business. They really are the engine of America, the engine that fuels the economy of America not only are there a lot of them, but they represent over fifty two percent of the gross output of the economy. It's the place that two-thirds the net new jobs of our economy comes from, and it's also the place that a lot of our innovation comes from. That makes us the envy of the world. World in terms of our economy so very very important agency. A lot of people have heard of it, but they oftentimes don't know everything it does. Where does your passion for Small Business? Come from a well? That's easy. I was fortunate to be born into an entrepreneurial family, so the first business owners I ever met where my mother and father and my father was especially a serial entrepreneur. He loved business. He loves starting businesses. I'm not saying he loved running. My mother ran the business ideas, man yeah, but I learned a lot about a small business I used to joke that everything I learned about business. I learned in a Mexican restaurant because that's why I worked when I was a little kid. What jobs is you? Hold with your parents Oh, a lot of them, you know we were an immigrant family and. There was five children. My mother had five children six years. I have four younger sisters, and so we were all recruited to my father's executive training program very early on, so we all had to work I remember waiting tables when I was nine years old. So And then I. as I got older, I got more responsibility and help run some of those businesses and start some of those businesses, and my father had a number of different businesses. We started off with the restaurant business, because that's an easy business to access, but then later on at a little import export business, a little construction business, none of those businesses wherever really large, but they were very important to our family helps support us. They helped educate, and we learned a lot about being in business and working with the community and customers, and so your father came to America start these businesses. He actually didn't. My father was an immigrant to the United States in the late nineteen fifties. I don't think he was planning on staying that long. But he met my mother. My mother is also from immigrant parents from Mexico they've shown love, and and of all places they started their journey in Kansas City Missouri that's where I was born. I grew up in Kansas City Missouri and my father. He had a lot of different jobs as a lot of immigrants do when they first get here. His first jobs were picking. Picking potatoes for fifty cents an hour in rural Missouri and later on, he worked at a railroad, a literally pounding the spikes into the ground, but in the winter it got too cold, so he moved into He started working in the livestock business, and it was very difficult. dirty work. He was cleaning out stalls, but at least it was warmer than being outside. When he was working at the railroad later on he, he was a janitor at the school that I would eventually go to, but my father used to always say that he was a business owner, and I would say dad. You have these jobs. You're not a business owners. They know what I have to do right now, but eventually alone my own business, so he was very passionate about that. He always wanted to work for himself, so he starts so then he starts these businesses and his career trajectory starts trending too so far up that start happening. Yeah, my father was a very visionary leader very. Very charismatic you know he when he's grown up used to say know. I came here with nothing I didn't know anybody. I didn't speak the language. I had no money I had no power, but I believed in myself I was willing to work hard, and this is such a great country that affords us the opportunity to go as far as we WANNA go. We're only limited by our own imagination our own commitment, so he he's. We started these businesses, but later on my father was kind of an organizer as well, and he wanted to belong to the Chamber of Commerce. This is in Kansas City. Number of others spanning businesses. There were there at the time, and my father started asking. Where's the Hispanic Chamber? And they said well. There isn't an Hispanic Chamber. My Dad said well there should be, and if nobody else is going to start it, I will so my father was one of the founders of the Kansas City Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, that was in the mid seventies,

Coming up next