Insight

A Look Back: Why Joining a High-Growth Company was the Best Decision I Made for My Career

Carrie Yury, Chief Experience Officer and Managing Director and Cheryl Couch, Director of Operations share how in five years they have seriously learned, grown, and are leaving their mark at BeyondCurious

You both have just celebrated five years at BeyondCurious, how do you continue to push yourself to learn something new?

CY: I’m very growth-oriented, which is a good thing. Being in the business of digital transformation, growth is not an option; it’s a job requirement. So, for me, the bigger challenge over the years has not been how to push myself to learn something new, but rather, how do I develop the resolution, stamina, grit, and optimism to be in a continuous growth pattern?

Growth is not easy. It’s no fun to fail, to have to look at where you need to improve, and to put in the work to get where you need to be. Every time I fail, every time I feel like I’m not good enough, or not up to the challenge, I have to dig deep—to do the uncomfortable work of trying to understand what I need to change. And then I need to dig in—to get busy getting better through diligent practice and application of new skills or patterns.

Like I said, the good news is that I’m growth oriented. So even though change and growth are hard, when I’m firing on all cylinders, completely engaged in helping to unlock potential in our clients, teams, and solutions, I’m in the zone. So, continuous growth is my flow state, which makes BeyondCurious a very good fit for me.

CC: I have learned more in my five years at BeyondCurious than I have learned in my entire career. I continue to push myself to learn new things because I have a growth mindset, to echo Carrie, which is something that each of us here at BeyondCurious has. The push is easy as you can actually feel the growth on a regular basis, whereas at previous companies, I might have been able to say, this year, I learned one or two great things. At BeyondCurious, I feel like I am having aha moments at minimum, several times a month. At the end of the day, it’s all in line with our company mission, which is to unlock potential and I feel totally unlocked here.

What’s been your favorite project to work on?

CY: I’ve worked with some incredible clients over the years doing work of which I am deeply proud. The work that BeyondCurious did to help Sonos develop the customer experience for their global direct-to-consumer retail stores was truly industry-leading, for example. I’m equally proud of work that we’ve done over the years for major companies and franchises like GoPro and the Miami Heat. But I have to say, that my favorite project has been building the business of BeyondCurious. Being here since the early days, I’ve had the opportunity to make a tremendous impact on shaping the kind of company we are. I’ve helped build the company’s culture, the methodology, the practice, offerings like developing Agile Research—the list goes on! I recently realized that in a very real way I’ve channeled a lot of the creative energy that used to go into my art practice into building this company and its been extremely rewarding.

CC: I just took on a new role at BeyondCurious that I couldn’t be more excited about! I am a people person and the most important thing to me is making connections. As the Director of Operations, I’m able to empower BeyondCurious and our team members by supporting them in being successful and making our clients successful.

What was the most challenging project?

CY: For me I go back to my previous answer. Building a business is tough! The hard skills and deliverables are the easy part, the tough part is building and maintaining mental optimism, resilience, and belief over the long term. And as a company, we get it. We talk a lot about mental and emotional skills and work toward developing them in our own culture too. I think that is one thing that people really appreciate about BeyondCurious; that we work on improving the whole self, not just the skills. I can’t tell you the number of things I’ve learned here that I’ve taken as general life lessons. It’s helped me tremendously.

CC: The most challenging project was the Vertiv Website Redesign Project, as it was the largest project that I have ever worked on and involved so many people and also had a firm deadline as the company was spinning off into a new brand. But, I learned so much from it! Like the fact that change is inevitable and you will continually need to pivot to accommodate these changes. Also, that being transparent with team members and clients is the best way to solve an issue quickly. But the best take away was that working with people who are passionate about what they do, is contagious.

What do you love most about BC’s culture?

CY: I could say a lot of things. Accountability, transparency, going beyond your best. That we are purpose-driven. But I think that one thing I really love is the idea of bringing your whole self to work. When I first met CEO Nikki Barua she asked me what I was passionate about. I told her that I’m fundamentally motivated by equality, and particularly equality for women and she not only didn’t flinch, she embraced me. She has also encouraged me over the years to be a leader and to help blaze a trail for other women in business. And she sets a great example, as one of only 5% of women CEO’s in the country. With my recent promotion, I’m now in some pretty rarified strata myself. Being in an executive leadership role as a woman is a privilege and a great responsibility, and I don’t take it lightly.

CC: I love the culture of unlocking potential. BeyondCurious has a growth mindset and each of us supports each other in being the best version of ourselves every day. Each day, I look around and see my co-worker’s hunger, heart and humor and it makes me very proud to be a part of this. Each time that I have come across an issue where I needed assistance, people here jump in to provide it, regardless of their role. There are no swim lanes. Just last week, I needed to stay late to prepare for an internal event and another co-worker stayed late with me to ensure that everything was ready. People here don’t leave people behind.

What skills have you honed at BC? 

CY: Where to begin? Its been an incredible five years at BeyondCurious. I’ve become a better leader, a better communicator, a better collaborator. I’ve become more resilient and more optimistic. I have learned so much from my colleagues and clients, and I am very grateful that I have had the opportunity to do so.

CC: I’ve learned the skill of project management, which has been essential, as it’s not just about getting things done, but getting bigger things done. Overall this has helped me to better understand client’s needs, and how to successfully collaborate across the globe. I’ve also learned how to receive feedback in a constructive way that not only benefits my team members but also the company.

What is the one piece of advice you would give to someone joining BC today?

CY: Bring your whole self to work! And that feedback is a gift that you should openly receive and give.

CC: Be authentic and kind. I truly believe you are at your best when you can truly be yourself.

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