Positioning your business for growth in an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem


BizGuide from The Accra Hub with Terry Mante

An entrepreneurial ecosystem is a community of institutional and individual actors that foster and support the entrepreneurial spirit, innovation, the creation of new businesses, building capacity and grooming talent.

An ecosystem creates a pedestal for inspiration, creativity and innovation. In the United States, many globally-successful companies such as Facebook, Google, Yahoo and Apple started from the two main ecosystems – Silicon Valley and Boston.

In the last few years, many entrepreneurial ecosystems have emerged and evolved in Ghana. These ecosystems are providing various services that are helping young people to boldly tackle some of the challenges in starting a business.

Issues such as finding suitable and convenient places to work from, finding markets, funding for startups, development of business leadership and management skills, as well as team-building and administrative support.

In places like this, the ecosystem does a lot of the heavy-lifting that must be done for businesses to thrive.

Entrepreneurs, so long as they are human, are definitely born. However, the mere fact of birth does not make you an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs are made. That is what entrepreneurial ecosystems do; they make entrepreneurs.

Main beneficiaries of an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem

  1. The Remote-from-Headquarters Employee

This remote worker works for a company that has headquarters somewhere out of commuting range. Since they live far from HQ, they may have to travel to meet with their teams in person, but otherwise are fully remote. What the full-time remote worker needs is access to a quiet or private space to take frequent video calls. They may not need a private office if they are travelling a lot. They will gravitate toward small meeting rooms that they can book several times a day.

  1. The Digital Nomad

Digital nomads are remote workers who usually travel to different locations. They often work in coffee shops, co-working spaces or public libraries, relying on devices with wireless Internet capabilities like smartphones and mobile hotspots to do their work wherever they want. Digital nomads may stay in one place for a few days or a few months, but ultimately will continue on their way with their laptops to a new destination. They can work from anywhere and stay focused in a noisy cafe as easily as a quiet office.

  1. The Solopreneur & Freelancer

The classic user of co-working spaces. They work for themselves with clients that may be local or remote. Their schedules may be erratic, working through the middle of the night or taking off mid-week for a quick vacation. If the majority of their clients are local, they need a professional space to take meetings that isn’t a coffee shop.

  1. Start-ups

Another classic from the earliest days of co-working. The early-stage start-up that doesn’t know if it’s going to survive for 6 months or 6 years. When they sign up for flexible office space, open desks are a great fit for their budget. However, as the start-up grows they will need more space and opt for team suites. If their growth is explosive and the workspace cannot accommodate what they need, they will graduate to their own company office elsewhere.

Top of Form

Bottom of Form

  1. Small Teams

Many traditional small businesses are moving to flexible offices. These are the small accounting firms, legal teams, architectural and engineering firms. They may have 2 employees or 10, but have typical office needs: coffee, a conference room, private office space, access to a printer – and a nice spot to eat lunch nearby.

  1. Travelling Corporate Employees

Those same big corporations frequently have teams and employees on the road. These workers need a nice office space for a day or two at a time while they make the regional rounds. Perhaps they are on a family vacation when something critical happens and need to get some work done while the family is off playing. If these workers are travelling through the same community often enough, a private office is ideal – although an open desk space with abundant private meeting rooms and phone booths can usually meet their needs as well.

  1. The University Student

Students who are aspiring to be entrepreneurs or need an internship can sign with a co-working space to get a taste of the start-up life. Students bring incredible energy to a flexible workspace, but typically need discounted or sponsored membership rates.

  1. Event Hosts

Co-working spaces are often more affordable and trendier than the traditional conference centre. Event hosts looking for a smaller venue, or one that is more aligned with their audience, are drawn to the unique characteristics of flexible workspaces in addition to their accessible pricing and friendly staff.


According to the US Chamber of Commerce, here are some benefits of operating from a co-working space:

  1. More networking opportunity: There is a great chance to connect with other individuals. If you are working from home, this may not be the situation. If you connect to an ecosystem and work from there, you could reduce loneliness and boredom by connecting with others.
  2. Collaboration opportunities: This benefit goes hand-in-hand with networking. Co-working spaces expose you to chance and opportunity. Who knows where a casual conversation may lead? Working in proximity to others allows quick collaboration to occur.
  3. Increased productivity: It is easier to get distracted when working from home than when working in an ecosystem. Children will need attention. You husband or wife, knowing that you are at home, will call you to check if they left a file at home. But when you are in an ecosystem these distractions are less, giving you the opportunity to be more productive.
  4. Cost-efficiency: If you are renting an office, there are many things you may have to deal with – cost of maintenance, cost of Internet and more. But in an ecosystem, a small fee gives you access to all of these.

Terry Mante is an author, Lead Consultant of Terry Mante Exchange (TMX) and Community Lead/CEO of The Accra Hub

Leave a Reply