Jeff Schroeder: A Natural Transition
By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter
SAN JOSE — By his account, Jeff Schroeder’s entry into the home remodeling field was a purely natural transition. “My father actually started his own remodeling company back in 1980, and as a kid, I would go to jobsites with him from time to time,” he remembers. “During my senior year of high school, I started working for him on a more regular basis, which was when I really got hooked. As soon as I graduated, I started full-time in the industry and I’ve been at it ever since.”
Today, as general manager of American Kitchen and Bath, Inc., Jeff says his favorite part of his job is the everyday challenges it entails. “In kitchen and bathroom remodeling, you’re constantly encountering issues that are unique to the homes you’re working in. For that reason, it never gets boring—there’s always a new challenge and something new to learn, which keeps me sharp, running and motivated.”
Born and raised in San Jose (where he lives with his wife, Robyn, and their children, Megan and Jacob), Jeff expresses his appreciation for the diversity to be found in California’s third-largest city. “San Jose really has a lot to offer, from jobs to entertainment and beyond,” he says. “Whatever you’re looking for, you can find it here. As far as working in San Jose, I get to meet so many different types of people and work on so many different types of houses, so there’s always something new.”
Outside of work, Jeff engages in a variety of pastimes, including auto restoration and watching sports. “I’ve owned a ’66 Mustang since high school, and I still enjoy going out to the garage and tinkering with it,” he says. “I also love watching hockey. In addition to being a big San Jose Sharks fan, my son plays roller hockey, so it’s a lot of fun to watch him compete and see him grow as a player.” Jeff also devotes much of his time to family activities. “My daughter and son are both in private schools that require community service hours, so Robyn and I usually work alongside them when they’re volunteering. Of course, we also love taking vacations to Disneyland.”
In his life and career, Jeff espouses the importance of continual self-improvement. “I believe that whenever you do something, you should try to do it better than the last time you did it,” he explains. “I’m always pushing myself, and I strive to learn from my experiences and improve each time I undertake something.”
When asked the first thing he’d do if he could retire tomorrow, Jeff says he’d get more involved in charity work. “I’d probably start volunteering a lot more and helping the community. I’m really involved with my church, so I’d probably jump into that twice as much.”
Ask Me Anything!
Q: Coffee or tea?
A: Water, actually.
Q: Have you ever read a book more than once?
A: “The Disney Way” by Bill Capodagli and Lynn Jackson. It talks about Disney’s business model/philosophy and how to apply it to your own company.
Q: What’s your favorite TV show?
A: “The Big Bang Theory.”
Q: What’s your favorite season?
A: Fall. I like what it represents—it’s the end of the year, things are winding down and it’s time to settle in for winter.
Q: Music or talk radio?
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A: Music. I like how, even if you’re in a lousy mood, if you play the right song, it can lift your spirits.