June 17 – 23, 2016
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Monica Kang

Monica Kang

Washington, DC
InnovatorsBox

http://www.innovatorsbox.com/

What does it mean to be a maker?

Makers are ‘courageous creative builder’ who sees daily challenges as an opportunity to make a positive contribution in their communities. They are the bold bridge builders who see the world full of possibilities. The great Makers I admire the most are those who build for long term growth and is mindful of the indirect and direct impacts to their contributions to the world. Their unconventional contributions help us rethink about our routine in a new better way. This is the kind of Maker I’d like to grow into and be remembered as with my company InnovatorsBox.

What are you doing in the Maker community?

I founded InnovatorsBox to build a community and help professionals shift their perspectives in creativity.

Creativity is key to personal and professional growth. However, studies show that 75% of professionals do not feel fully creative and feel stuck. I understand this struggle firsthand from working in the public sector for six years. I transformed burnout into renewed energy and productivity by integrating creative concepts into my work. My journey taught me the importance of expressing creativity and I wanted to help others find their paths.

To empower professionals, I provide workshops on different elements of creativity such as curiosity, empathy, and reflection. As the Maker, I curate all the educational programs, exercises, and games in addition to building the business. Each workshop offers participants a toolkit to build creative confidence, shift perspectives about creativity, and connect with like-minded professionals.

Within five months of opening the business, I hosted 15 workshops in four cities for 160 people. 90% of participants expressed that their perception of creativity changed and how thrilled they are to apply their skills. I have also secured 12 partnerships with local businesses who are excited to build a more creative community together.

I can’t wait to build more!

Who are some other Makers you admire and why?

While I admire many leaders and friends, I am foremost most grateful for my family who have taught me the importance of being a mindful leader and thoughtful maker. Their support and presence helped me make my transition from a full time professional to an entrepreneur possible.

My mother, Lee Kyung Sook, taught me patience, gratitude, and joy in taking the road less traveled.

My father, Kang Myung Sun, taught me the importance of integrating kindness, experimentation, and resilience when building a business with long term impact.

My brother, Albert Kang, reminds me to never give up on ones dream.