Fresh Concepts is a promotional marketing company that offers a wide variety of services including screen printed and embroidered apparel, promotional products, online company stores, awards and signage. Their main goal is to develop long lasting partnerships with their customers and they strive to offer the best and most creative solutions for image branding available. Dave Ekdahl is the owner of Fresh Concepts.
How did you get started in the business? – To be completely honest, I was tired of being told I was capped out on my salary! After investing years in each career opportunity, I just wanted more than what I had and a good friend of mine suggested this line of work. As a result I have been in the industry for 14 years and have owned Fresh Concepts since August 2009.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced professionally? – For our company it was having the right systems and people in place. But our #1 challenge was the daily bookkeeping and accounting. We did not pay close enough attention early on since all we were focused on was sales to ensure we stayed in business past the beginning stages. In retrospect, we definitely needed to pay attention to both equally.
What has been your most important achievement professionally? – Developing Fresh Concepts from the basement of a house with just Lisa and myself as our staff into a flourishing, successful company. Not only do we now have a new warehouse/office space plus a retail showroom and conference room in another space, we also employ seven sales raps and one full-time warehouse manager. But before all this, we generated $1.2 million in revenue to 300+ customers out of our home!
Tell me a little about your family. – Between my fiancée, Lisa, and I we have five children: Ian (17), Ashlyn (14), A.J. (14), Delaney (8), and Isaac (7). All of our children are very active in sports, so we travel a lot in the summer and are always on the go.
What is your favorite thing to do on a day off? – What’s a day off? I would say being with Lisa and my family and watching all of our kids in their various sports and events as well as going out and enjoying time with friends.
What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know? – I am half Korean and half Swedish. I was born in Korea, but most of my family lives in small towns throughout Nebraska.
What are you the most proud of? – Definitely my fiancée, Lisa, as it has been amazing to watch all of the changes and personal growth she has gone through since I have known her and of course, our kids. With blending families, moving three times and operating a company in our home it was pretty hard on all of them, but they still excel in school and have great attitudes.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received? – Try, fail and adjust! Listen and learn from people who are where you would like to be. Read and continue to grow as a person.
If you could choose any other profession to be successful in, what would it be? – Professional basketball player.
What is your favorite movie? – Avatar
What is your favorite TV show? – Criminal Minds
What is your favorite local restaurant? – Golden Palace
If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be? – Zig Ziglar