Episode 180
October 17, 2023

Factories, Feedback, and Furniture

with Stephen Kuhl, Co-Founder and CEO of Burrow

About this episode

Today Lee is joined by an incredibly innovative entrepreneur, the Co-founder, and CEO of Burrow, Stephen Kuhl. Burrow is a company that makes buying furniture simple with swift delivery, easy assembly, and a multitude of options. In this episode, Stephen shares his love for customer research and outlines how he was inspired to go to business school before delving into how he and his business partner came up with the idea to start Burrow. We discuss their incredible journey from rejection to massive success, their experience throughout COVID, what’s in store for them in the future, Stephen’s interesting leadership style, and so much more!

This episode is sponsored by

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 In This Episode You’ll Hear About:

[00:03:26] How Stephen’s passion for skiing made him accident-prone and pushed him into a traditional career path.

[00:10:11] How the overwhelming desire to fall asleep at his bank job made Stephen realize it wasn’t for him.

[00:13:17] Stephen’s first business venture, the ‘true start’ of his career, and his journey into investing.

[00:18:21] How being part of investment inspired Stephen to apply to business school and his experience of it.

[00:20:49] Meeting his Burrow co-founder, the start of their innovative furniture company, and Burrow’s unprecedented fundraising success.

[00:27:35] Their gross margin challenges and ‘faking it’ to get factories to work with them.

[00:37:55] Burrow’s milestones, how COVID-19 affected them both positively and negatively, and their ‘secret sauce’ to success.

[00:37:55] What’s next for Burrow and why Stephen loves doing customer research the most.

[00:47:46] The importance of having a coach as an entrepreneur and Stephen’s straightforward leadership style.

 To Find Out More:


Stephen Kuhl on LinkedIn

Stephen Kuhl on X

Stephen Kuhl on Instagram

Lee Greene on LinkedIn

Stairway to CEO

Stairway to CEO on Instagram


“If I didn’t care about the product that the company sold, it didn’t really matter what work I was doing.” [0:15:55]

“I – wanted to make more money so I went into investing.” [0:17:19]

“You know what’s better than investing in consumer companies? Working at [those] companies!”  [0:18:57]

“By second year [of college] I think half of my class [thought] I dropped out because I was living in New York [working on Burrow].” [0:26:52]

“You sort of just have to pretend that something is really good even though you’re not there yet.” [0:31:56]

“The fake it till you make it thing is real!” [0:32:19]

“Luck is huge, right? I think most people don’t give enough credit into how much luck plays into [success].” [0:33:11]

“If you bought furniture in 2020/2021, most companies were quoting you like six months to a year to deliver it – and for most [things] we pretty quickly got [delivery] back down to one to two weeks.” [0:43:04]

“We’re just scratching the surface with new products!”  [0:44:34]

“Give clear feedback, set clear direction, check in with people frequently, and then – you definitely need to empower people and accept that they won’t do things like you would do [them] but as long as the outcome is similar, you should not care.”   [0:50:07]

Read the transcript

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