New and Rebranded Ten Habitat
14 years ago, Selwyn Cambridge turned his personal frustration into a solution to help other entrepreneurs like himself successfully navigate starting and scaling a business. He created The Entrepreneurial Network (TEN) in 2009 – A sales and marketing network for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs.
Eight years later in 2017, The Entrepreneurial Network (TEN) was registered as a non-profit and went through a massive transformation to go further in its support of big dreamers with its ethos which sought to build a community around startup founders so they can learn faster, move further, and build stronger. The Entrepreneurial Network (TEN) became TEN Habitat, a place where entrepreneurs come to grow. Today Cambridge’s vision is more than real, offering startup and business accelerators, coaching, mentorship, and investment preparation along with running a co-working space for entrepreneurs and an innovation hub.
Cambridge who studied Art and Graphic Design at Barbados Community College and holds an advanced Degree in Marketing and Business from the Australian Institute of Business, said after starting a business he had to learn a lot of pertinent business operations from trial and error. Thus, he wanted to use what he had learnt over the years as a successful businessman to ensure any future entrepreneurs did not have to face the same challenges he did.
“My foray into entrepreneurship more than 25-years ago was the fuel which led to the start of TEN Habitat. My experience starting a business was not what I felt I as an entrepreneur needed and the help which was available was totally misaligned, so I figured much of it out through trial and error and made a personal vow to myself that if there was anything I could do to help other entrepreneurs avoid the same path and mistakes and experience success much faster I would. That led to the creation of The Entrepreneurial Network (TEN) which started as a network for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs. It later evolved into TEN Habitat and that is because we wanted to mimic the system of an actual habitat found in nature. The basic elements of any natural habitat are food, water, cover and space and we wanted to recreate the same kind of nurturing environment nature uses to support growth,” he said.
For the month of April, he is allowing any startup business to co-work at Ten Habitat’s, Wildey, St Michael location for free. Cambridge said this was due to him announcing at the start of this year that Ten Habitat would make this The Year of the Entrepreneur and will be celebrating their journey at every stage.
“A big part of celebrating The Year of The Entrepreneur at TEN is building community. Making the space free for the month of April to have entrepreneurs come together and work, share and learn from each other is part of our commitment and promise to support founders on their journey. Working from home and out of cafes will never give you community in the way you need it. Being in a space surrounded by like-valued and like-minded persons on a journey similar to yours, seeking to build something makes all the difference in what your own journey can look like and the experience will be. We want to introduce as many entrepreneurs and individuals as possible to this reality and Freebie April is but one of those efforts,” he said.
The founder and executive director of Ten Habitat said he believes the organization is one of Barbados’ best-kept secrets as most persons who come into contact with the entity always are amazed at the services provided by the entity having never heard of it before.
“Every person who comes into contact with TEN Habitat for the first time says, "Where have you guys been all along?! I could have used you when I was starting out!" We hear this so often that I deemed us the best-kept secret. The value we offer to founders is unmatched and we want more entrepreneurs to understand that they have a genuine supporter in TEN Habitat but not many people know fully how extensive that support is and how different we are. We no longer wish to be a secret. As we are building better entrepreneurs so they can build better businesses. A big deal for us is about mindset and the one thing I want the public to know is you come to TEN Habitat if you want to grow as a founder and develop the right kind of entrepreneurial thinking to move faster and go further,” he said.
Cambridge said TEN Habitat naturally supports entrepreneurs through learning by osmosis to help foster more organic growth that stays with them. It’s something he sees happen all the time in the Habitat he helped create.
“We see it happen every time. Bring individuals together in a space who are at varying stages of their development and have varying life and business experiences and magic happens. The rate of learning accelerates, development cycles become shorter and communities become more supportive and stronger. All this happens organically. This is why we are a Habitat, this is about people feeding off of each other to learn, grow and excel. It is the natural process of Osmosis,” he said.
The owner of Ten Habitat is a fundamental believer that entrepreneurship is the way forward not only in Barbados but the wider Caribbean and to this end TEN Habitat is keen on playing a vital role in making entrepreneurial development a reality as they are implementing an integrated approach to entrepreneurship.
“Most individuals mistakenly believe that entrepreneurship is lonely and needs to be so but actually it does not have to be. We focus on building a community around entrepreneurs and helping them to recognize the power of genuine support. We have devoted a lot of time and financial resources to build a global network and that community to support Caribbean founders. We are connected to every major startup ecosystem globally, from Africa to Asia, and Europe to the USA. We pride ourselves on helping Caribbean founders build world-class ventures capable of receiving investment. It is really why we invest so heavily in building the entrepreneurial mindset in every person who engages TEN Habitat on their journey. We tell founders, "fix your mind and your business will follow!" For us, entrepreneurship is a mindset and great businesses are nothing but a by-product of that mindset,” he said.
To find out more about Ten Habitat follow them on Facebook and Instagram @tenhabitat or visit their website www.tenhabitat.com (Write Right PR Services)