Blog > Remote Accelerator Program: Grow Your Startup in the Virtual Shift

Remote Accelerator Program: Grow Your Startup in the Virtual Shift

Posted on: September 6, 2020
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Getting off the ground and growing a company can be a wild ride for founders. Statistically, most new businesses fail and the existing COVID environment is even more unforgiving. It takes determination and the right balance of knowledge, network, and support to succeed in today’s market.

Face-to-face access to mentors, investors, and other founders have also become increasingly difficult to find in today’s environment. Enter solution: Remote startup accelerator services.

What to Expect from a Traditional Startup Accelerator

Startup acceleration and incubation programs traditionally help young companies in an academic environment learn the basics of creating a scalable company. A traditional accelerator can be crucial for growth-stage businesses that need help with the “how-tos” of accessing capital, services, and developing sustainable operations.

Unfortunately, reliable pre-seed accelerators and VCs aren’t easy to find. Each day, the hunt for startup support grows more and more competitive. While traditional accelerators still collect equity as compensation for advising founders their traditional means to provide support has been limited to a lower percentage of companies.

Programs are being pulled back and, much like the academic world, traditional accelerator programs have struggled to keep the quality of services consistent with the level of support they once provided.

Moreover, in challenging markets, access to mentorship, capital, and support is becoming much more important for new companies. Startups need a balance of education and infrastructure to ensure founders are set up for success. In addition, they need a growing (not shrinking) network of connections to help them navigate radically-changing markets.

Listen to Leslee Cohen, Partner at Hershman Cohen LLC, as she talks about her connection to Workbox as a Mentor.

Traditional and Virtual Accelerator programs should, at a minimum, help founders develop a scalable business strategy. They also should include basic services such as:

  • Pitch deck and financial model creation
  • Capital access
  • Resource and mentor guidance
  • Strategic services
    • Accounting
    • Human resources
    • Technology Development
    • Marketing & sales

However, the new virtual world is drastically changing the way accelerators deliver resources to startups and also opened the door to new more effective ways to provide support to early-stage companies when they need it most.

Virtual Accelerator Model—A New More Effective Way to Help Startups Succeed

Traditional accelerators have either paused admissions or tried to replicate an academic model virtually through online courses and mentorship. However, more innovative remote accelerators have balanced the foundational elements of the business with the more pressing resource access elements to create a much more robust platform for young companies.

Accelerators should offer the basic infrastructure elements of helping companies effectively develop and articulate a business plan. New accelerator models see the benefit of opening access to hundreds of capital partners (not just a single program).

Opening a platform of strategic partners and founder-to-founder communication channels enables you to choose the operational services you need. You can also reach out to other entrepreneurs who may be dealing with and solving similar challenges to the ones your company is experiencing today.

The new post-COVID-19 environment requires the virtual accelerator model to be more than an educational resource. Now, it needs to be a centralized platform to open doors to new connections that have been cut off by the crisis. Elevating the startup ecosystem in a crisis means opening up the market to many more investors, mentors, and operational resources.

Final Thoughts

Workbox began as a startup studio space where founders could come together for growth. More than just shared offices, we offer access to capital, strategic services, mentorship, and a community of other founders. The pandemic crisis allowed us to find a solution to deliver these same resources access virtually without the need to be in a physical space through our unique remote membership.

Our goal has always been to connect entrepreneurs in ways that give them the best chance for success. These core values remain and are even more important during a pandemic, and we are dedicated to helping you navigate the unpredictable storm whether you need physical space or not.

Contact us today to learn more about Workbox’s remote accelerator services and how we can help you take the next step.