Mekala Seme Mekala Seme
Intern, Communications


February 21, 2024


Ronnie Slone’s dedication to serving others started at a young age and is a quality he brings to his role as president of The Slone Group (TSG). Established in 2005, TSG provides consulting, organizational development, and training services to businesses of all sizes and youth in the Greater New Orleans region.  

Slone, a member of the U.S. Chamber’s Small Business Council, created TSG as an extension of his commitment to create opportunities for growth for disadvantaged business owners. TSG’s focus on organizational development and training services creates a framework where equity is the cornerstone for all interactions with clients and their employees. 

In honor of Black History Month, we are asking Black founders in the business community about their path to entrepreneurship and the positive impact they are making in their communities. The following conversation has been lightly edited for clarity. 

Q. Tell us about your business. How do you interact with and positively contribute to your community? 

The Slone Group is a minority and veteran-owned business whose mission is to partner with companies to guide and support the personal and professional development of their No. 1 asset, their people. At Slone Group, we, too, are responsible for the future of the organization we work with, designing engagements that cause employees to believe in the potential of behavioral change, building skills that create true culture, and becoming a workplace where team members feel welcomed, respected, valued, and heard. 

I’ve always been raised to serve others, and I believe in the concept of time, talent, and treasure. I’m active in my church and my community through several non-profit organizations. Each allows me to exercise my passion as a vehicle for more opportunities and a deep desire to unfreeze and then refreeze systems and processes that create inequities. 

Q. What does Black History Month mean to you?

Black History Month provides the world with the opportunity to listen, to learn, and to lean into the contributions Black people have made to our globe. It’s a moment in time where Black people are highlighted, and there is an opportunity for folks to acknowledge the journey of opportunity we have been on. People are participating in a deliberative dialogue during Black History Month. This allows for the illumination of lived experiences that are different. It's not right or wrong; it's just different, and there are reasons for that. This month allows folks to see outside of their lives and maybe open their thinking to a view different than their own. 

I celebrate Black History Month all year long. How I come to the many tables the Lord has blessed me to experience provides me the forum to present the view from my seat. So, our work in organizational development and training provides a platform to use equity as the foundation of all our interactions with clients and, therefore, their employees. This month, we have days of service planned through organizations like the United Way of Southeast Louisiana, and we are being intentional in scheduled programming that highlights the accomplishments of people of color. There is so much I’ve missed and so many stories I was not aware of.

Q. What are your biggest challenges as a small business owner? 

There are many challenges in the organizational development and training consulting world for small firms. TSG is in a small market, so there is a need to garner regional and national exposure, leading to a broader client base. Many organizations have their own training departments or are mandated to use larger national firms. Here is where an equitable lens could help. We have the experience, credentials, skillset, and reputation to focus specifically on local and national needs. Opportunity is needed!

Q. What is one thing people can do to show their support for Black-owned small businesses this month and year-round? 

Be intentional about giving Black-owned small businesses a chance, and be sure to support them.

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Mekala Seme

Mekala Seme