Since moving back to Ghana in 2012 from Virginia in the US, Emmanuel Gamor has worked for Google, YouTube and Nestle, which all have offices in Accra. He’s currently on the Faculty for Entrepreneurial Leadership at the African Leadership Union.
He says a key motivator for his return was greater career opportunities for him in Ghana.
“There are so many things that I could do here that I couldn’t do in the States”. While he says his return has been incredibly difficult, it’s also been incredibly rewarding.
Emmanuel’s move back was in response to a family emergency, when his father fell into a coma. He left his mother and sisters in the US, to be with his dad. Unlike many returnees who come home to extended family, he found himself largely alone when his father died the following year.“That left me with a lot of responsibilities, a house, property, all kinds of different things”.
He got in touch with alumni of his Ghanaian school, and joined networking groups for Ghanaian and international expats.
Emmanuel says he has made an effort to balance his involvement with expats versus local groups. “I think it’s important that we have expat communities, but it’s even more important that we have local communities so we understand the Ghanaian psyche, and why things are the way they are.”
Understanding how Ghana works has helped him get used to the challenges associated with life in West Africa.
“It’s been incredibly difficult, but it’s also been incredibly rewarding,” adds Gamor,emphasing that living in Ghana has led to unique experiences, like being on a panel at the World Economic Forum in South Africa last year.