Juanita Ecker has spent most of her life helping people put their best foot forward. For 17 years she had a business teaching business etiquette to management trainees. “I covered dress, dining, networking skills, listening skills, telephone etiquette, everything you need to know when you are dealing with a customer or want a professional presence, she said.”
But in April of 2016, she decided to do something else, go into business for herself. “I was doing a bridal show and the people in a booth not far from me were swamped and I said what do you have, I want it, she said. “ The people in the booth were selling the ‘MAKE-UP ERASER’. She bought one of the erasers, used it and thought ‘WOW’.
“It’s a polyester cloth, get it wet and go in a circular motion and take off the mascara. It’s very gentle-no soap. I can take all of my makeup off in about 3 minutes and I love it, she says.” Unlike a towel or wipes, Ecker says you don’t have to wipe and repeat, and repeat, and repeat which she says speaks to women, especially those who sometimes sleep in their makeup because they don’t want to go through the time consuming ritual of trying to get their face completely clean. However, she says with the 'Makeup Eraser' not only can you get the job done but she says after you use it, there is no residue.
She says when pitching the eraser to others, they immediately think she’s lying. “People first don’t believe me. They think I’m trying to scam them or they think it's one of those things you buy and it doesn’t work and you're stuck with it, she says." But, once they use it, they’re a believer. Ecker is a true believer in the product. In a recent company sales competion she came in 5th out of 50 sales reps. winning a trip to Mexico.
That had a lot to do with her passion being re-ignited and her belief in the product but it also had to do with her sales prowess. This would be her third business. Her first would be selling purses back in college. ‘'I always had a business, I had in-home parties selling purses, in the 1970’s, she says.” She says she put herself through college without taking out any loans thanks to her purse business.
After that, she worked editing technical manuscripts then the etiquette business. The saying is that a woman always has the right to change her mind and Ecker has done that with jobs. She doesn’t however do it lightly. Quitting her previous job to start selling the 'Makeup Eraser', she says was a decision that didn’t come easily.
“I struggled for the longest time because I have so much etiquette training and it became who I was; do I close it, do I keep going, it was not bringing me the joy it use to and I said if you don’t close it nothing will come your way, because you are not ready, she said.” It took a lot of courage but in April she did it with the thought of let’s see what happens. “I had only been with the Makeup Eraser only a month so I was open to it. A lot of women have problems stepping out of their comfort zone, and saying I have lots of skills and can do something with that,
she said. “
But she adds make sure it feels right. “It has to be your decision and not what others tell you. Even though I was scared, I just said I am going to have the faith that something will come to me that is good, she said.”
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‘ ”Living to inspire others, the loudest person isn’t the one always heard”
When Loretha Agyare’s son headed off to college she thought he needed some spiritual guidance, so she began sending him daily inspirational thoughts-things she jotted down to encourage him. Her father passed away around that same time and along with helping her son to stay positive, her writings were also a way to help her cope and grieve the loss of her father.
Soon the inspirational sayings became second nature and she began giving them to friends. ‘They were sharing them and I then realized people really liked them, she said. “ They were sharing them with co-workers and their friends and passing them around.
But, to her writing was still a hobby until a trip to her church in December 2015 her hometown in South Carolina. “A speaker there said there are people in the audience not using their gifts and I was standing there and something within me said God is speaking to you, says Loretha, she said."
That visiting pastor said for 10 days Loretha should speak openly about her gift. “When I returned I kept saying publish the book, she says.” She also noticed that she had gotten emails while away. “While I was away people were asking what happened, I didn’t get my daily thoughts, she said.
However, it would take a different speaker before Loretha really believed her future was about to change. In January 2016 in New York a different pastor said the same thing. It was confirmation that writing was her gift.
So she started contacting publishing companies and settled on Author House. ‘They notified me it was the final product but I thought it would take a longer- a year to get it out, she says.”
But it only took four months, in April of 2016, ‘Living to Inspire Others, The loudest person isn’t the one always heard’ by Loretha Agyare was a reality.
“I was telling my siblings to go on the website, they said how can you keep that a secret.” The entire experience taught her a lesson in faith. “In hindsight, I said wow, ye of little faith. Scripture tells us if we ask not, we receive not and so we have to ask in order for him to give us. So, I have to take part of that and, and you gotta think positive always, she said. Sometimes we think we are not good enough or worthy. And that is not true, she said. “