Masterclass ‘Access to Finance’
The Access to Finance masterclass is an initiative of the New Career Platform and was implemented in collaboration with the MDF West Africa. The two-day online program was organized with the aim of enlightening young professionals and start-ups on funding sources available in the Ghanaian Ecosystem and the importance of basic having accounting skills. This engaging session was facilitated by Eric Ayamga, the Development Finance Expert for MDF. Eric has trained and guided many young professionals, SMEs and Businesses, offering tailor-made financial workshops and advising on financial decisions.
After the Idea to Business Workshop (a successful training on how entrepreneurs can transform their individual ideas to viable businesses), it was logical to educate them on the importance of keeping records and expose them to available funding sources in the Ghanaian Ecosystem. Since most SMEs and start-ups are not financially equipped to hire the professional services of accountants, it’s needful that entrepreneurs have the technical knowledge of how to keep basic records.
On day one, Eric stressed on the need to acquire basic accounting skills as entrepreneurs. Keeping records of all business activities aids in ascertaining the financial stage of the business and supports in formulating an effective business strategy. He walked participants through basic but very important accounting procedures and rules such as ensuring all business transactions are recorded daily and maintaining a separate business identity.
Eric made sure to explain to participants how accounting is not as scary but rather a needed skill. Bookkeeping is essential for continuity, it helps with strategy formulation and forecasting. By adopting and practicing a good accounting habit, entrepreneurs will know the financial state of their businesses, this will aid in making proper financial projections.
After an engaging presentation and Q&A, participants were grouped into breakout rooms to make basic sales projections taking into consideration various cost elements and how to properly make cost projections so that costs can be well tracked and factored in financial decisions. Reactions, feedback and the engagement level clearly showed a need for financial guidance and coaching, but it also demonstrated that record keeping doesn’t need to be a very difficult and complicated process.
On day two, participants were exposed to the various sources of funding in Ghana and the needed steps to be taken to access those funds, examining what investors look out for. Pressing questions were also addressed:
- Whether to finance a project with debt or equity?
- What are Key Performance Indicators?
- How to set SMART Key Performance Indicators?
Adopting good financial practices ensures that all funds can be properly tracked. Entrepreneurs will be well equipped and informed in making financial and investments decisions, targeting funds in the right direction and for the most appropriate use. The masterclass ended with answers to participants regarding their individual business challenges.
The New Career Platform identifies the need for young professionals and entrepreneurs to be properly groomed in attempting to enter the business world, as such, huge investments are made in organizing workshops, masterclasses and other events to equip you with knowledge and strategies to maximize your entrepreneurial potential. Keep an eye on the New Career Platform Events to stay up to date about future workshops and programs.