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brunchwork’s Founding Story

By: brunchwork

brunchwork’s Founding Story

Hi there, I’m Paulina Karpis, brunchwork’s cofounder and CEO.

Our story begins 5 years ago. Despite working in finance, I felt priced out of an MBA. A price tag of $200,000 plus two years of lost wages? That just didn’t seem worth it to me.

At the same, I recognized that business skills have never been more important to long-term career success. The only jobs that are truly future-proof are those that can’t easily be automated or outsourced. One key category is management roles that require a high level of interpersonal skills, emotional intelligence and experience.

So, I set out to reimagine business education.

Before I could do that, though, I had one pretty big barrier to overcome: My concept was centered around experts sharing their knowledge, but I didn’t know a single business leader. I was a recent college grad with no network.

I cold emailed several alumni at my alma mater and a behavioral scientist named Jon Levy. I had read about Jon’s work in The New York Times, and thought he’d be an interesting speaker.

When I met with Jon, he probed me on every aspect of the business. It became clear he wasn’t just interested in speaking. He wanted to get involved. I was impressed by his accomplishments:

Behavior scientist focused on decision making
• Known for his work modeling influence and creating The Influencers
• A recognized super connector

Jon pivoted brunchwork toward active learning by introducing our core concept: the Audience Challenge. Guests work in small, curated teams on a business case and get real time feedback from the speakers.

Together, we deconstructed the MBA and reverse engineered the benefits:

• A network of smart peers and business leaders
• Dynamic knowledge of business trends and skills, without the debt
• Access to career opportunities

Get ahead in your career.

Learn from top business leaders, understand key trends and build your business acumen. Get intel and advice, for free.

Nowadays, brunchwork attracts as many MBA alumni as would-be applicants. We realized that the MBA’s biggest flaw is that it’s too short. The world is changing at a breakneck speed, and our generation needs continuous learning to thrive.

When Covid hit, 100% of our revenue was in jeopardy. We successfully transitioned our beloved, in-person experience to digital. We have two programs:

1) 2-Month Business Intensive: Sharpen 8 core business skills and build a portfolio of sophisticated projects to leverage when you’re up for promotion, interviewing or starting a company. Comes with a membership.

2) Membership: Unlimited access to interactive workshops with top business and tech leaders. Perks include speaker intros, guest passes, and a video library.

We’re passionate about delivering modern business education and improving higher ed. Thanks for being along for the ride!

– Paulina

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