I conducted an interview with Eyitayo Ogunmola, the 25 year old founder of Project Management Hub (PM Hub). In his concluding remarks, he gave his most potent advice for aspiring and young entrepreneurs, “Don’t grow in isolation.”
As simple as this piece of advice is, it is often trivialized. There are aspiring and young entrepreneurs out there boxing up their ideas, graciously protecting it for fear of idea theft or simply because they want to take the glory alone. However, business and entrepreneurship history is filled with stories of startUps that were co-created.
Jobberman, microsoft, facebook, google, Apple, HP, Red Media Ltd (Y! Naija), have co-founders not founders. Little wonder why it takes at least two people to register a limited liability company in Nigeria. Hubs are springing up even in Nigeria, Co-Creation Hub, Leadpath Hub, Passion Hub, Enterprise Creative’s Hothouse, Novohub and a number of others all in Lagos. I am also aware that Edo State Government is also working on such an arrangement. Most of these hubs exemplify the co-creation principle by having co-founders themselves.
During the University of Benin Edition of “What Next After School” an graduates employability and enterprise development seminar I organized; Chibuike Aguene of Start-Up Hub Nigeria said “I’ll rather own 1% of a company that works than own 100% of a company that do not work.” Although I have reservations about giving up the entirety of your company’s equity to funders, a bargain for co-creation and shared glory will give birth to more thorough enterprises and more sustainable too. In whatever sector we are, let’s embrace co-creation.
Lions, hyenas and even soldier ants walk in packs. A NatGeoWild documentary says that “Soldier ants are part of the world deadliest pack hunters, crushing everything along its way (even the elephant).” When we blend our competence, skills and resources together, we form a so formidable synergy such that “nothing that we have imagined will be impossible for us.”
So go ahead, research co-creation spots, entrepreneurship communities, coding communities and even trade union nearest to you. If it doesn’t exist, create one! Don’t go around searching for greener pastures (like nomadic herdsmen) when we can plant grazing fields (like commercial husbandmen). Even God co-created man (according to christian teachings). Below is a list of co-creation hubs I know, kindly add more to the list; Co-Creation hub Venia hub Novo hub HotHouse StartUp Hub The Idea House Passion Incubators Leadpath Accelerators