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It all started 45 years ago with a dream and 10 grasscloths
Eric Bershad founded Phillip Jeffries in 1976 with just 10 grasscloth wallcoverings in his garage. Now, 45 years later, the company has more than 250 employees, global distribution, and a million yards of wallcovering stocked in their New Jersey warehouse. While Eric's sons Phillip and Jeffrey Bershad run the day-to-day operations, Eric is chairman of the board. Eric reflects on the early years and what's next for PJ. Read the full interview in our new magazine, The Drop.
How did you set PJ up for success?
The most important thing I passed down is the relationships. It started with a dream, terrific employees, and a lot of people who have been very good to us. But, taking a family business and maintaining the success, that’s the hard part.
What’s the best part of a family business?
There were a lot of great things about working with the boys, but the beset times were when we traveled together. I was traveling 23 weeks of the year and traveling alone is very difficult so having a son come with me was wonderful. Traveling with both of them was really exciting.
Any lasting impressions?
When you look at PJ, I want you to see that it's one of the best places to work. We value our employees - some of them have been with us since the
What’s life like today?
I’m in Boca Raton and it’s 70 degrees and sunny!
Eric Bershad's Favorite Things
1. FAVORITE QUOTE: The difficult takes a few minutes, the impossible might take a little longer.
2. FAVORITE PIECE OF ADVICE: My favorite book is the Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable by Seth Godin. PJ has to be the purple cow. You must stand out. You have to be different.
3. FAVORITE MEMORY: When the boys were young, Philip was about 13 years old, and he would climb all over these giant stairs in the warehouse. Sue would say, “Get down!” And I’d say, “He’s fine!” And he was. He’d haul these rolls all over, up and down, and through the warehouse. There’s a little bit of me in both boys. They’re their own people, but when you come home and talk about business at dinner, it kind of gets in your blood. They have a lot of passion and energy.
Find out Eric’s "wallcovering superpower" and more in the full interview. Read the Drop
Now in its fourth decade, Phillip Jeffries has emerged as the industry leader in natural, textured and specialty wallcoverings. A manufacturer and importer of unique and fine quality textured wallcoverings, the company was founded in 1976 with just 10 grasscloths. From the humble beginnings of the family garage, Phillip Jeffries now stocks more than 1,000 ready-to-ship wallcoverings in their 60,000+ square foot headquarters. Working hand-in-hand with skilled artisans, Phillip Jeffries creates the design world's most beautiful and sought-after wallcoverings. For more information, visitPHILLIPJEFFRIES.com