Chicago native David L. Steward has worked hard over the years as chairman and CEO of World Wide Technology Inc., to help make it one of the largest Black-owned businesses in the entire country. Born in 1951, Steward grew up in Clinton, Missouri and vividly remembers segregation and what it was like to face poverty and discrimination. His early life experiences helped shape him, and Steward points out that, “The adversities I encountered during my youth served as my training ground for hard times I eventually faced as a struggling entrepreneur.”
Steward founded World Wide Technology in 1990, and the company has grown to be a leading systems integrator that provides technology products, services and supply chain solutions to customers worldwide. The company has reported revenues in excess of $1 billion despite the fact that maximizing profit was never Steward’s sole motivation. Instead, Steward’s motivation has been to serve others, with financial success being a byproduct of that.
This philosophy has shown through in the fact that Steward is both one of the richest men in the world and also one of the most generous. Adhering to his principles and sharing his faith is part of Steward’s personal mission, which he outlines in his book “Doing Business by the Good Book: 52 Lessons on Success Straight from the Bible,” in which he discusses how he feels it is necessary to take leaps of faith and take risks in order to achieve and the role faith plays in success.
In an interview with The New Pittsburgh Courier, Steward talks about how his faith has played a pivotal role in shaping his business practices, stating, “Our brand is the trust level we bring to the marketplace, so we must represent excellence and put a stake in the ground as to whom you will be and what you will stand for; then take a stand on your values and stay true to them.”
Steward believes that Christianity can be used as a guide for economic success in the business world, and sums it up in the following statement: “Count it all joy, even the challenges. It is through the challenges that we grow. Seek to serve and give your very best to others, and good things will come your way.”