Pop Quiz, Monday with Stephen Karaolis, CEO & Founder at SKPRNY


The Pop Quiz, Monday is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business owners. The examination is not a surprise after all since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you can not learn in a classroom. We want to thank our entrepreneur for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.

I want to introduce you to our guest today who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.

1. Can you please tell everyone your name?

Stephen Karaolis, Founder of SKPR

2. Tell us about your business and what you do?

SKPR is a communications agency focused on developing what we call indicators of authority for businesses. This means earning them press coverage, raising their social profiles and getting their key messages out into the world in creative ways.

3. Why did you want to become an entrepreneur?

On a personal level, I wanted to have the freedom to take my work in different directions without having to go through the red tape of a structured organization. On an industry level, I felt that the PR agency model was somewhat broken and that I could do things a different way. Most current day PR agencies are very top heavy when it comes to salary distribution, but the majority of the workload tends to fall on junior staff. My goal is to run my agency a bit flatter in terms of staff structure, ultimately meaning that clients get a qualified team that’s able to accomplish more for less.

4. What are the challenging aspects of running a business?

The most challenging part of running a business is deciding where to focus your energy. There are so many different things that can be accomplished every day, but as a solo founder it’s impossible to get to everything. The trick is figuring out what to prioritize and what to save for later. Ultimately, I’ve learned that it’s best to focus on whatever you feel is most important and not worry too much about what you’re not doing.

5. What do you love most about your job?

What I love most about PR is the creativity that the job allows for. PR is very unstructured, there’s no right or wrong way to make any given client happy. It’s up to you to analyse trends and see what initiatives will drive the best results for the specific client. Given that there’s a tremendous amount of flexibility, it really allows me to get the creative juices flowing on a daily basis and come up with really cool ideas that I think will get press coverage or gain significant traction on social media.

6. How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?

I’m big into creative breaks. Just the other day I found myself near Central Park in Manhattan for a meeting. Instead of going back to the office, I spent a couple of hours just walking around the park and relaxing. I’d rather take the time to step away for fun, breaks, etc. so that when I am in the office, I truly can focus on being very productive and getting a lot of work done in shorter amounts of time. When I’m at the office, it’s all business for me.

7. What would one piece of advice that you give to a new business owner?

Don’t feel that you always have to be working. Much like my last response, I have to stress that time away is just as important as the time that you are plugged in. It’s often during time away from my laptop where I come up with the best ideas and the clearest visions for my business.

Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web:

Visit our website: www.skprny.com

Follow us on Instagram: @skprny

Author: Ricky Singh, MBA

Editor of The Startup Growth.

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