Founder of Ecommerce Startup KOYA Innovations Shares Their Top Insights

KOYA co-founder.

Any entrepreneur can tell you, launching a startup is a learning process. Therefore, one of the best things you can do prior to launching a startup of your own is to learn from those who have blazed the trail. Courtney Werner, founder of tech startup KOYA Innovations, shared valuable insights during our interview that will inspire and motivate aspiring entrepreneurs.

What advice do you have for aspiring entrepreneurs?

“Approach your startup as a scientist. Prioritize building a solution to your hypothesis rather than building a product and get user feedback early and often. I know it might sting for people to share negative feedback, but it will save you so much time and energy.”

What is the best method you've found to avoid burnout as an entrepreneur?

“I would love to say that I have avoided burnout over the past four years, but I haven't. In order to keep KOYA alive, we all have made sacrifices. Personally, I have been working several jobs on the side to pay my bills. At times, this has been exhausting. To avoid burnout in the future, I have been prioritizing my morning routine again and am also making space to exercise every day. It's important to take care of yourself spiritually, emotionally, and physically.”

What is your advice for coming up with a unique startup idea?

“Don't try to come up with something unique. Instead, develop a posture of curiosity and you will stumble upon a loud enough problem that requires a solution. Once you think you've found a problem, maintain that curiosity and question your hypothesis.”

What is your advice for overcoming challenges and failure?

“A friend of mine used to tell me that disappointment often comes before an appointment. I think of this whenever I experience a setback. It helps me reframe the experience as an opportunity, which opens me up for new possibilities. This has been helpful for me, and perhaps it will be helpful for you as well.”

What is the biggest lesson you learned and what can aspiring entrepreneurs take from it?

“Jay Shetty shared about the importance of having a to-be list instead of just a to-do list. I now write my to-be list next to my to-do list to make sure I am being the person I want to be while reaching my goals. For me, achievement is no longer measured by financial outcomes or notoriety — instead, it is measured by how I treat the people around me. Am I kind? Am I patient? Am I loving? Do I hold space for people to be vulnerable? Do they feel heard and seen when they are around me? Do they [feel] valued and celebrated? It's tough to think this way, and sometimes I don't do a very good job at it, but I am working toward it every day.”

What is the best advice you've ever received?

“This moment is all you have. Breathe deeply and embrace it fully. ‘All I have is all I need and all I need is all I have in this moment.’ — Byron Katie”


Tell Us Your Startup Story

Are you a startup founder and want to share your entrepreneurial journey with our readers? Click below to contact us today!

Request an Interview