Passionately curious: Selena Man Karlsson.

AuteurHasegawa, Erika Frey
Fonction Business: entrepreneur in focus


Selina Man Karlsson is passionately curious. Since launching her business "Curious Courses" at the start of this year, she has been moving full steam ahead as an entrepreneur. Surprisingly, she left a stable career in Swiss banking to become her own boss. Her team was relocated from London to Zurich ten years ago. Thus, Selina ended up in Switzerland. It was while climbing the corporate ladder that she realized that there must be more to life than her all-consuming job. Although her life was good, she felt unfulfilled.

Curious Courses

As we chat over croissants and English breakfast tea, I realize how focused and driven Selina is on her life's new mission. I casually ask her about a pair of funny looking glove-like running shoes spotted in the hallway of her home. She enthusiastically leans in towards me and face lit up, seems to share a secret: "That's from the barefoot running course. You should try it out; it's really fun. A bit hard at first, but lots of fun! The teacher is great." Instantly, my curiosity is peaked. I make a mental note to this time actually try on a pair on my next shopping trip. Selina's public persona is professional, comfortable and polished, the ultimate "business casual" in my eyes. Our paths cross during workshops and other events in the expatriate community. Meeting for the first time one-on-one, I sense an overwhelming cool and collected calm. She focuses completely on our conversation, yet in a comfortable manner. Selina almost seems to be a natural-born coach, as she points out various courses that could be of interest to me.


I am interested in finding out first hand what triggered Selina's decision to becoming her own boss. After a change in job role not initiated by herself, she asked her employer to reduce her hours to 80%. Then, with one workday off a week, she focused on figuring out what her new direction would be. When I ask how she approached finding the new business idea she responds that at first it was scary. Having had little time for hobbies before, she had no idea what her interests could be. The idea for her first Curious Course came spontaneously while walking to work. She wanted to learn new and different things and since she knew some small business owners, it came to her, she decided to setup short courses herself. The first was Feng-Shui; it was also very la mode, so it could be a good workshop. From there on Selina's appetite was wetted and her...

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