marcus davis, headshot
Entrepreneur Marcus Davis believes that every individual has something to contribute to the world. — thebreakfastklub.com

If you're familiar with the Houston area, you've probably heard of The Breakfast Klub. No, it has nothing to do with John Hughes' classic 1985 film, although there is one key similarity: It's a place where strangers from all walks of life gather to become a community.

The Breakfast Klub prides itself on being an integral part of Houston life, providing a unique eating experience for locals and tourists alike. This Midtown culinary hotspot has been serving traditional specialties like "Biskits & Gravy," "Wings & Waffles," and "Katfish & Grits" since 2001, and it treats every customer like family.

The Zagat-rated restaurant is the brainchild of Marcus Davis, president and CEO of The Breakfast Klub. Davis, a serial entrepreneur, radio host and public speaker with a background in political science, sees all of his business ventures as being interconnected and integrated into the local and global community.

In a recent interview with CO—, Davis shared his personal outlook on politics, entrepreneurship and the role of every individual in contributing to the world at large.

CO—: You have a degree in political science. How have you applied that background to the restaurant business?

M.D.: Everything we do in this world is governed by politics. From the streets you drive on, to the school our kids go to, to the air we breathe, politics is there.

I am in politics through business, and in business through politics. As my mentor once told me, "Everything you do is a political statement, from flushing the toilet to casting a vote. The vote is for a political office and the flush is governed by a municipality that was voted upon."

I listened carefully to what the marketplace was calling for and relied on the gained experience.

Marcus Davis, president and CEO of The Breakfast Klub

CO—: It can be difficult to enter and thrive in the restaurant industry. How did you prepare yourself for the challenges that come with the territory?

M.D.: I prepared myself through my previous work and life experiences, through diligent research and studying the industry and the marketplace. I listened carefully to what the marketplace was calling for and relied on the gained experience.

You must be mindful of the challenges, studying success and failures—which are, in fact, the building blocks for success. This has helped build the foundation of a great team that operates on our business philosophy: quality product and quality service all the time.

CO—: What is the most important lesson about starting or running a business that you wish you had known when you started?

M.D.: There are a myriad of things that I didn’t know and learned along the way because of the lack of exposure of African Americans in business. Due to the brevity of us doing business in this nation, there was a trough of things unknown. I cannot specify one particular thing that I didn’t know, but I am grateful for the lessons I’ve learned along the way. My goal is to prepare the next generation by equipping them with the knowledge I have.

CO—: In addition to owning the breakfast klub and Reggae Hut Cafe, you also sell consumer food products, host a radio show, and speak at events. How do you manage to balance all of these different lines of business?

M.D.: With the support of a great team. We’ve been fortunate enough to build a great team that allows me to continue to maneuver in those other spaces. I’m driven by the understanding of the necessity of me operating in those spaces as well. Those things are a part of the community. We are a part of the community. I do not see them as being separate. I see them as being inextricably linked.

CO—: What are your future growth plans for your businesses?

M.D.: To build Wakanda…one grit at a time.

CO—: Do you have any advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?

M.D.: Just do it! Be bold, be brave, be diligent and just do it – not for yourself, but for the community and the world. Ask yourself, "What impact do I have on the lives I encounter, the people that work on my team and the people I serve?" Each creature has a contribution to make. Figure out what your contribution is and give it to the world.

CO— aims to bring you inspiration from leading respected experts. However, before making any business decision, you should consult a professional who can advise you based on your individual situation.

Published March 01, 2019