Remote Vs. In-Person Startup Accelerators
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Remote Vs. In-Person Startup Accelerators

Any chance to grow your business is most likely a good one. So how do you know what kind of startup accelerator you want to join? We'll walk you through remote and in-person options.
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The recent worldwide pandemic has taken a substantial toll to everyone mentally, physically, and even financially.  As a result of the pandemic and the measures put in place to help stop the spread, many of us had to find alternative methods to gather our income. For many, remote work options were made. 

While many companies were forced to close their doors physically, there came a boom of virtual business as people were buying, selling, and consuming over the internet. However, this left some business owners hanging as they now knew they needed a new way to put themselves and their business out there.

The Virtual Possibilities Are Endless!

In come virtual, remote accelerator programs. Much like the accelerator programs that many new business owners have come to know well, remote accelerators provide just about the same services without having to set a foot out your front door! Some may even be convinced that these virtual programs might even be better for their business as well!

However, as the pandemic dies down, many of us are eager to safely leave our homes and get back to how things were what feels like centuries ago. Will this mean the potential end of remote accelerator programs too?

Before you make the big decision for a switch, let’s take a look at some of the things that each provides, as well as some of the cons or both sides. 

A hand in a blue suit shaking a hand in a black suit.
Photo Credit: WeWork

Accelerator programs

As you might already know, accelerator startup programs can give new businesses great potential to grow. On the other hand, like many other things that promise tons of growth and all of your wildest dreams to come true, there is always something that is going to try and stand in the why. The cons.

Let’s start off with the pros

First things first, one of the biggest things that you will get out of joining an accelerator program is the network effect. It is crucial that you have a network or your business so that you are connected to important people like mentors, advisors, and even alumni companies and investors interested in your business. Once you have a network for yourself, you can build off of the people who have been in business and learn trade secrets for your company. 

Another huge advantage you could get is brand recognition. You might find that many of these programs may be a bit tricky to get into. Once other companies, investors, and employees see that you have graduated from something with this caliber, it sets you apart from the hundreds of other startups in the same stage as you. You just took the route less traveled.

Now, the cons

Much of the time, when you sign up or something like this, it may mean that you have to give up a rather large amount of your company and profit. An accelerator program may only last six months, but a piece of the company will be owned by someone else for the time it's in business.

In addition, after starting your journey through the program, it is only the start of all of the work that you must put in to make it worth your while. There are a ton of events that you must attend with some of them potentially not helping you or your company in the end. Techstars, a popular accelerator program, requires all its candidates to attend everything while others let you pick and choose, still wanting you to at least join a few. 

A cute dog lying back on a couch typing away at a laptop
Photo Credit: Moodman

Remote Accelerators

Remote Accelerators should offer just about the same as a traditional accelerator program should, just virtually. Plans such as these often include access to networking opportunities, recognition, and foundational elements of the business growth along with online marketing courses and mentorships. In addition, many would say that this is the more helpful option for a busy schedule.

When anything shifts to a remote status, there is one common thing that they miss out on. Social interaction. While many of us may like to say that we like the alone time or that they would rather be alone, you cannot trick your brain into believing it. Humans crave social interaction no matter what the form.

bring blue neon text that reads "cuz that's yo business"
Photo Credit: Ndubisi okoye

What’s right for you

Finding the option that is right for you and your business could prove to be a difficult one. While it is always great to know what the benefits could be from either side, you must also look into some of the possible risks as well. Research is another huge key element that comes into play when making a choice between remote and in person accelerator programs. Look into all your options, narrow down trusted ones, then find the one that could best fit your company.