We had the good fortune of connecting with Jenifer Eggert and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jenifer, what do you attribute your success to?
Self: Perseverant! Throughout my life I’ve pursued things that others may seem strange. I was never an over achiever as a child making modest grades as a B student at best. I was born in Bangkok and moved to the US when I was 11 years old. I learned early from my mother to never take no for an answer, to always ask and push politely for what you want. When I entered High School I knew no one but quickly made friends. I had an interest in swimming so my mother suggested that I join the swim team. Not knowing back stroke from free style I said, “Ok!, sounds good”. Out with the flu, I missed tryouts so my mother called the coach and asked if he would test me on my own the following week. Most parents may not think to even ask. The coach probably thought…poor girl…she can swim for fun but what the…she’s never seen competitive swimming before (which I hadn’t). He found it in his heart to give me a chance so I joined and practiced. I practiced year round, 5am-6:30a before school then afterschool 2-4p 5 days a week. In my senior year I qualified under a few categories for finals and helped win a relay. When I left for SDSU at 18 years of age, I agreed to work for Cutco / Vector Marketing. Most people last 10 days (seriously), I stayed for 5 years. Loyal or crazy? I’m still not sure to this day but am glad that I did. I spent 15 years in Automotive…AutoTrader, Kelley, Wholesale, and banking all under Cox Automotive. In my 5th year I was inspired at a conference to pursuit my private pilot’s license as a hobby. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve done. I wanted to give up, but pushed through. In my 6th year with Cox my boss, mentor, and friend asked my husband and I to pack up and move cross country from CA to NC to work for him in his Region. Ok! A year later my VP said you need to now move to the North East and take control of the entire Region when the last two female Directors were both let go. I said, “I don’t want to go, we just got here and it’s cold up there!”. Bob said, “too bad, you’re going”. Ok! And it was one of the best moves of my career. I was eventually promoted into a couple of different VP roles and moved back to CA. After having our son at age 34 I felt an enormous amount of guilt for being gone for work the first years of his life. My mother, step mother, and 4 of our animals all passed within 2 years of one another. My husband and I decided to make another life change so I “retired” at 40, we rented out our home, bought an RV, and the three of us drove around the US and Canada for 11 months. When we returned we moved into our Cabin in Julian, CA. We now own a cafe in town called Regulars Wanted Beanery. My tenacity has not come without sacrifice. It has put our marriage through the ringer but again, not giving up, we stuck it out during the hardest of times and are much better for it today accepting one another for whom we truly are. My philosophy in life is that there is always a way.
Brand: Regulars Wanted. It’s all in the name. We purchased this URL many years ago as we figured if we started a business of any sort, we would want Regulars. We stand behind our products & service with a smile always striving for Kaizen (continuous improvement). We own up to our mistakes and take accountability.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
We are a small Coffee shop and Café / Beanery in the mountain town of Julian, CA offering organic coffee, tea, hot breakfasts, lunch, and baked goods.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
From the beach to the mountains and back I would say we could start off in Julian do some shopping, gold mining, hiking and visit some camels at the camel dairy. We could do some hard cider tasting too! Just an hour drive away we would then go to the beach, bike and relax. Then onto the San Diego zoo and Balboa park or San Diego Wild Animal park. A foodie at heart, my list would be a mile long on places to eat. Alforon, kearny mesa for bomb asian food, South park for the best ice cream shop, and the list goes on and on.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Wow, there have been so many people. My mom and dad for their love & guidance. My best friends whom kept encouraging and supporting me. And even those whom didn’t believe in what I was doing perhaps they pushed me to prove them wrong. To Chris Ochs, PJ Potter, Wes Goddard, Jaime Miles Costa and all of the Cutco leadership gang for pushing me ask for things I never would have imagined. With Cox Automotive Cynthia Ferguson, Steve Garcia, Bob Landers, Alan Smith, David Pyle, Amy Balog, Janet Barnard, and countless others whom took me under their wing and set both good and bad examples to follow or change. To my peers and staff whom pushed me to be a better leader and person. To my son for providing inspiration. And most of all to my husband whom has stood by my side through it all.
Linkedin: jenifer eggert