Chuck Egerter is intentional. When he set out to start Guardian Eagle in 2003, he was more excited about creating a company culture than selling a product, and that continues to be the driver for the work he does today. As a "near native" to Pinellas County, Chuck saw St. Pete in its ghost town days, when the Vinoy was boarded up and Central Avenue was not the thriving cultural hub of today. Pragmatic and thoughtful, Chuck spent many years as President and Board Member of Deuces Live, fighting for the cultural preservation and economic revitalization of 22nd St. S. Through his business, community involvement, and personal life, Chuck is committed to keeping St. Petersburg's renaissance alive, and preserving its standing as a place to live, work and play.
Years in St. Pete
Organizations involved in
St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce, TECGarage Planning Committee Member, Deuces Live Past President & Board of Directors, Tampa Bay Partnership, St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership.
What gets you out of bed every day?
A focus on intention. I try to set an intention for the day and we as a company set intentions for our business.
Why St. Pete?
We were based in Clearwater, driving somewhere every day at lunch time to these same five or six franchise places. It was getting old. I wanted to breathe a little life and energy into the every day work environment. There was just so much going on in downtown St. Pete, even outside of the food scene. There was this sense of community that didn’t exist in Clearwater. Within the first month of being here, Chris Steinocher walked into our office and introduced himself. That was pretty cool.
What is one habit that you keep?
Introspection. I’m constantly looking at what I’m doing, thinking, and saying to make sure that it’s in line with what my objectives are. You might picture someone quiet and reserved being introspective, but I’m talking and doing this simultaneously all of the time.
Who are some people that influence you?
My wife, Michele, who works in IT as well. We frequently discuss ideas and challenges together, we both have idealistic views of the world and what we think it should be, so we help keep each other focused on what’s important.
Generally, ideas influence me more than people. People come up with things that I like, but I often connect more with the idea than the person its associated with. For example, Thich Nhat Hanh’s teachings specifically on emotional awareness and intentional, positive influence on the world around us are ideas I connect with and often allow to influence my decisions and actions. Others include: Eckhart Tolle, Laura Lynne Jackson. I take some of each of these ideas and meld them together to form overarching concepts that I apply to my life.
What is one piece of insight - a book, methodology, practice - that you would share with our readers?
From a business management perspective, a book called Traction by Gino WIckman, that describes a process called Entrepreneurial Operating System, which has become a foundational methodology for how I run Guardian Eagle.
What is one thing you wish you knew about your work 3 years ago?
How to be more gutsier and more passionate about the work we do. We are so technically strong, but we never over-promise. But that has made us somewhat risk-averse. We are making a change to our three uniques and our guarantee to make our salespeople and our clients excited about the work that we do, and the technical expertise that we offer.
Refocusing attention back on Guardian Eagle. I’ve found my spark again. We’ve begun re-shaping our guarantee to make it gutsier. After multiple years of focusing on the Deuces Live, pouring heart and soul into the Manhattan Casino project, I realized I need to keep this business alive and feeding me and the people that work here. If I don’t, then I won’t have anything to give anywhere else. That doesn’t mean I’m going to stop being engaged in those other things, it just means I have to be more careful with the amount of time I put into something. I still fully intend to see the dream of the Manhattan Casino realized, as the lynchpin to the revitalization of Deuces Live corridor.