It was 2015 when Steph Korey, now a notable entrepreneur, decided to develop her global lifestyle brand – Away. Over the next four years, Korey’s work would lead Away to a valuation of more than $1.4 billion, quickly becoming one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies, according to the team at Fast Company.
In such a short time, individuals often wonder how entrepreneurs can develop such foundational ideas and exceptional business plans. The simple answer to that deceptive question is this: curiosity.
Curiosity as a Game-Changer
According to Steph Korey, a thirst for understanding and a desire to constantly improve were integral in the early years of her work with Away, especially during its developmental stages. Steph Korey cites her own sense of curiosity as being at the heart of what makes her global lifestyle brand work so well. In fact, a sense of curiosity is what permeates Korey’s work, so let’s take a closer look at the core benefits it provides.
Driving Innovation and Engagement
As children, we are driven by an innate desire to learn more about the world surrounding us. According to Steph Korey, this same curiosity can drive our entrepreneurial endeavors to the next level. Pinky Daga is the CEO of Thriive Art & Soul and she was quick to echo the words of advice offered by Korey.
Pinky Daga said, “Most entrepreneurs have been the kids who were always getting thrown out of class for exploring the unfamiliar.”
More than anything, entrepreneurs like Daga and Korey suggest that a sense of curiosity can keep entrepreneurs engaged and open to new ideas, always ready to apply new concepts to change old applications.
Maximizing Efficiency and Productivity
Perhaps the most important aspect of a sense of curiosity, according to Korey and entrepreneurs like her, is the desire to make things better. Korey points to a traditional vehicle assembly line that has thus far been operating correctly. Without a sense of curiosity, nobody would ever try to improve upon that assembly line.
A highly curious professional will look for better ways to accomplish specific functions. We can even see entrepreneurial curiosity lead to mutually beneficial partnerships that maximize both productivity and efficiency in entirely new ways.
How Curiosity Guided Steph Korey
As a successful entrepreneur with years of work under her belt, Steph Korey can say with certainty that curiosity was integral in guiding her business success. Korey has consistently aimed to find new answers to old problems, often turning to her parents and her childhood for guidance. Korey says, “I think that global perspective and that excitement and openness in understanding people (…) really shaped my worldview.”
Before Steph Korey was a successful entrepreneur, she had attended Brown University before graduating with her Bachelor of Arts in International Relations. Steph Korey would briefly work at the Carter Center in Atlanta where she worked in conflict resolution before turning her attention toward the private sector.