Episode 35 – Rory & Jenn Erchul – The Yellowstone
We Just Figure It Out!
Natives of Minnesota, Rory and Jennifer Erchul didn't see their lives playing out the way that it has, especially being restaurateurs in Pocatello. They took several twists and turns along the way and learned tenacity.
After college Rory was hired into a corporate job and advanced in the ranks. That job brought them to Pocatello where they fell in love with the area. Even though Rory thought his career trajectory was with this company, he left after being passed over for a promotion but stayed in Pocatello with a new start-up.
During their time in Pocatello, they had grown their family. Although Jenn loved being a stay home mom to her kids, she desired to add a different challenge. Jenn and her friend started a children's store in downtown Pocatello called Jennifer's Children Shop. Although Jenn's education and experience had been in writing and psychology, she knew she could figure out how to run a business by just doing it. The store was a success and they were able to triple their investment when they sold it a year later. Jenn had also been writing for a local magazine and eventually became a freelancer writing for several different national publications.
Being trained in the corporate world, Rory acknowledged that he had the “employee's mentality” and working for a start-up made him a bit nervous for him and his families security. Seeking a more secure job Rory took the family to Oklahoma, but only for about 6 months. “We absolutely hated it…nothing was right,” Rory said.
Their next move took them to Omaha, Nebraska as the VP of his previous wireless broadband company. He ended up wearing several hats and burning the candle at both ends. Rory said, “you know how sometimes on Sunday night when you kinda get sick to your stomach when you think, oh man, what's waiting for me? I'd feel that way 7 days a week.” He had his big job but it was taking a toll on the family and so he made another change. He found a 9 to 5 job that helped him to settle and take a look at what his future would be.
Meanwhile, Jenn had built a lucrative writing business and had clients that included Lance Armstrong and Tyra Banks. It worked with her family because she was able to work while the kids were in school and after they went to bed. She felt this was critical because Rory wasn't able to be around much. One night they had a crucial conversation and Jenn said, “I didn't get married to be a single mom, something has to change.” So it did. Rory made the big leap to leave the corporate world and joined her in her business.
Knowing this business could be done anywhere, they knew that they wanted to come back to Pocatello. They jumped right back into the community when they returned and haven't stopped. Through their involvement in the Chamber of Commerce, they met their partner in The Yellowstone and followed their dream of opening a taproom in Pocatello. The deal came with opening a restaurant too, so in 5 1/2 weeks time, they went from saying yes to a full opening of The Yellowstone Resturant and the 313 Whisky Bar and eventually Union Taproom.
Rory and Jenn have had failures along the way including a business that was a week away from launch when new government rules rendered it non-viable and another where partners deceived them and left them with a major financial loss and mistrust. They have had naysayers who have told them that their ideas wouldn't work along the way. Jenn says, “Please don't tell me no because then I have to prove it [will work].”
They attribute their success now to tenacity and their attitude of “we'll figure it out”. Along the way, they have been great partners because they complement each other's strengths so well. Ultimately staying authentic and serving others is what they feel are their superpowers to success and there's no telling what they will be up to next!
If you'd like more information on The Yellowstone and Rory & Jenn's other businesses click here: http://theyellowstonerestaurant.com/
In addition, they have the Chute Trainer you can learn about here: https://chutetrainer.com/
Thank you to Disruptive Productions for editing the show. Learn more about what James can do for you at: https://disruptiveproductions.com/