Interview: Jacob Peregrin
Give us your full name.
Jacob Samuel Peregrin
Share the kind of work you do.
I do a little bit of everything for Oklahoma City retailer Blue Seven.
How did you come to do this type of work? What were you doing before you started your current work?
Wonderful question! Happenstance. I was enrolled to begin law school at the University of Oklahoma for the spring semester of 2010. After working three different internships at different law firms, I realized my heart was not in the work. Sure, I could be good at what I was doing. But I wanted to be more than just good, I wanted to be passionate. I began working at Blue Seven part-time the summer before school started. At the time, the shop was getting ready to open a denim room and Caleb Arter, the store’s owner, was essentially running the store all alone. I believe we were mutually looking for a way for me to stick around and help out. The first week of school corresponded with the Vegas apparel market that we attend bi-annually. He asked if I wanted to join, and the rest is more or less history.
Can you share the risk in pursuing doing the work you love?
Every profession has risks, some just happen to have risks that seem like more of a gamble. The only risk I feel in my choice is that of financial comfort. Working for a local business is not necessarily a way to "strike it rich," but the fact I work in a free and inspiring spot that values people over dollar bills solves the issue.
What’s the biggest way your business has changed since you started it?
The business has literally doubled in size, added online sales and now owns the building we once rented. Those are the major outward changes. The inward changes have led to us continuing to invest in other employees by sharing responsibility and allowing creative freedoms. The place we are today is not the solitary work of one or two people. It takes a team of people willing to put their lives together and build something special.
Tell us a few things you have to be consistent in to do your best work.
Always a cup of coffee to get things started. But more importantly, a willingness to seek out confrontation and address people directly. The times I find myself "stuck" at work, it is generally an issue with another person. Whether it’s a simple disagreement or just an “off” feeling, a decisive conversation is the starting point to the best work.