Jacquelin’s Story

January 15, 2021
Jacquelin Tan

Born the middle child takes on a lot of responsibility during childhood. Growing up in Malaysia, I was not a responsible child until eight years old. When I moved back to the West from the East, where my family resides, I stayed with my grandmother. It drastically changed my life. I became a better person. I believe this had to do with her parenting. My grandmother raised me well and taught me to be an understanding person. She became a widow before I was born, and she was a wealthy grandmother but never spoiled any of her grandkids. She ran my grandfather’s construction business with her children. My grandfather was well known in Malaysia for the National Mosque he built for the country in 1968.

I had grew up fast for my age. My father always worked out of town, and my mom worked as well, so I took on more household chores than my two siblings did. I am who I am today because of how I was raised during childhood.  I learned from excellent coachings and took on more responsibility in my life. I am the ultimate rules follower.

Moving to the United States, I became more independent. My goal was to study abroad, but it didn’t happen due to financial shortages early on. I had to work to earn my living. Of course, after years and years of working, finally, it was time to go back to school. Even though I went to school, I was still working to pay my tuition. I found that I didn’t lose any time in school or at work. A person spends at least eight hours of sleep and eight hours of work (according to a typical workday). We have 168 hours in a week and spend 16 hours occupied per day, and 112 hours per week. What do you do for the rest of the 56 hours? I took every available hour I had and spent it learning.

My interest was to become a flight attendant, but at the time the timing wasn’t right. There wasn’t anything else that interested me so my mom suggested doing a cosmetology program. I gave it a try and completed the program. Of course, it’s not an easy way to earn money, but every job has to start with hard work anyhow. I started working behind the chair and became an instructor (because I wanted to share what I know with the future hairdressers). Gradually I stepped into the financial aid department where I had a great mentor. From there I worked my way into an Operation Leader, and now I’m responsible for operations at both schools.

As I continued to work in my operations role, I learned more. Sometimes, I doubt I will be able to do the job but I want to share one example: Last year, I went to San Jose to close out the facility. It was the last week before we would need to vacate the building and I couldn’t find a moving company to help with moving. It was a demanding task and finally we were very successful in vacating the building on time. It was determination and quick-thinking skills that allowed me to turn the potential failure into success. Just like this quote says, “It always seems impossible until it is done.”

This year we have faced more challenges. If we don’t practice safety precautions, people can die. I can honorably tell you that it is a very stressful task, but I’m ready for the challenge again even if I get push back. We had another successful year that we went through and we continue to get through this year. I am honored and excited to take on my new role as General Manager at Esani.

My goal is to fulfill those who want to understand the business concept better and survive in this field. If you’re going to be successful in the area, you must follow the right mentor and learn from them.

I know everyone wants to know what else do I do when I’m not at work. I like to be a fashionista so I always look at fashion books. I like to dress up my home, especially during the holiday season. Of course, the holiday celebration in my culture has yet to come and will happen in February. By now lots of the team members know I love “Hello Kitty”. There’s a story behind it, but I’m not going there. Also, I like taking pictures! If I wasn’t in this field, I might be a photographer. Cooking is my second hobby, and I do enjoy my afternoon English tea time!

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