From Turntables to Tactile: How Marc Coleman Designed a Career in Entrepreneurship
When he was a senior in high school, The Tactile Group president and CEO Marc Coleman seemed to have it all figured out.
The Philadelphia native got an internship through Inroads that was carved out for aspiring minority engineers and wore a suit each day when he went to work for a company downtown. He started DJing in 1988, and he earned enough money from his internship to buy Technic 1200 turntables, considered by experts to be the best on the market.
A single moment marred that first corporate experience.
“I remember [it] distinctly in a true water cooler moment,” he told Technical.ly. “People talked about someone else in the [talent] pool and it was a very homophobic exchange.”
Coleman was floored. When he thought about it more, he didn’t see any people of color in leadership where he worked and the few women of color on staff were disrespected. He realized that he couldn’t bring his best self to such a negative environment and that working for himself would be the best option.
It’s an experience shared by many Black professionals in the corporate world. For Coleman, it was the catalyst to build something of his own. Soon, he would find opportunities as an entrepreneur — as well as learn how to navigate barriers along the way.
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