Mikki Cardoza: Working from the Heart
By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter
SANTA ROSA — Before she was moving real estate, Mikki Cardoza was molding young minds in the classroom, a vocation she loved in spite of its exhausting nature. When she transitioned to a career in real estate, she encountered a new set of challenges, but more importantly, she found a fresh opportunity to work from the heart. “In 2000, I was working as a middle school teacher and also had four seventh- and eighth-graders at home,” she remembers. “I got to a point where I was completely exhausted, which prompted my decision to take a year-long sabbatical from teaching. During this time, my neighbor who owned a real estate brokerage suggested I give real estate a shot. It wasn’t long before I’d passed my realtor exam and was working locally. I was enjoying it so much that I started to consider staying in real estate rather than returning to teaching.”
In contemplating the transition from teacher to realtor, Mikki’s principle concern was whether she’d still be able to make a positive impact. “I told my best friend, who also happened to be a teacher, that I was worried about going from a rewarding profession like teaching to a career in sales,” she explains. “She responded that buying a home is one of the most difficult decisions people make in their entire lives, and it’s important to have a caring, honest, ethical person guide them through the process. Hearing that made me realize I could still do good and find fulfillment in this new field.”
After going into real estate full-time, things began to ramp up for Mikki, and it wasn’t long before she found herself in a familiar state: exhausted. “I found myself working pretty much nonstop, with barely any time to see my family,” she says. “I could feel a burnout coming, but I knew I didn’t want to give up my business. So, I sat down and wrote a dream business plan that addressed the issues I was currently facing. For example, I imagined how it would look if I could actually take time off without impacting my clients.” Soon after, Mikki found a chance to put her plan into action. “In February of 2012, I had the opportunity to purchase a commercial building, and a month later, MikkiMoves Real Estate was born.”
Today, Mikki says her favorite part of her job is making a difference in the lives of others. “I love working with my clients and helping them achieve their goals. Also, as a lead broker, I like helping the other agents on our team be successful. In everything we do, my hope is that we always work from the heart and keep our clients’ best interests in mind.”
A resident of Santa Rosa (where she lives with her husband, Art), Mikki spends her time outside of work engaged in a variety of hobbies and activities. “Art and I have two grandchildren, so my number one thing is spending time with them whenever I can,” she says. “I also enjoy traveling, going out to eat, talking walks in the park, reading, cooking and relaxing at the beach.”
When asked the first thing she’d do if she were to retire tomorrow, Mikki says she would have no trouble filling the extra time. “I would definitely like to travel more, as well as spend more time with my family. My husband is already retired, so when I’m headed to the office, he’s usually headed to the golf course. I’m looking forward to my chance to play!”
Ask Me Anything!
Q: Have you ever read a book more than once?
A: “Awaken the Giant Within” by Anthony Robbins.
Q: What’s your favorite local restaurant?
A: It’s a tie between Sea Thai Bistro and Willi’s Wine Bar, which are both in Santa Rosa.
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
A: Fiji, for the beaches.
Q: What were you most known for in high school?
A: The ability to get along with any kind of crowd. You might say I was socially ambidextrous.
Q: What’s your favorite movie?
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A: “The Princess Bride.”