Grady Jensen | DAS Optics
What is your Name and Business?
Grady Jensen is the Co-founder of DAS Optics. Listen in as he tells us how he and his dad founded the business, the challenges they faced, how they prioritize customer service, and the feedback they receive!
Name: Grady Jensen
Business name: DAS Optics
What was the 1st step you took to start your kidpreneur journey?
“The first step I took on my Kidpreneur Journey was that I wanted some really expensive sunglasses. And my dad said no. And he said that we could source sunglasses for half that expensive and make them ourselves. So that's what we did. We started making sunglasses that were comfortable for kids and adults and were stylish. And our family and friends have supported us a ton.”
What challenges did you face?
“Our first challenges were definitely finding sunglasses that we liked and that were quality. The first batch of sunglasses that we ordered, the quality control wasn't very good, so we had to, like, glue the ear pieces back on of every pair because they would slide off and then also, like, getting the word out about our company. That was pretty hard, too.”
How do you celebrate your wins?
“To make this company a little more fun and unique, we decided we donate $10 of every pair back to the nonprofit of the buyer's choice. It's really fun at the end of every month to send checks to nonprofits around our local town and around the country. It's also very fun to celebrate our wins by going for a ski or a bike ride.”
What feedback have you received?
“We get a ton of positive feedback from parents about how our sunglasses are so inexpensive and how they love to buy them for their kids and give back to the community. We also get lots of positive feedback from local nonprofits or nonprofit around the country sending us thank you letters for our donations. And we've donated thousands of dollars to our local Ski Education Foundation.”
What's your proudest moment?
“One of my proudest moments was on. I was in sun valley for a nordic race, and I was lining up for the race, and there were like, three kids next to me from the sun valley team, and they were all wearing my sunglasses. And I just thought it was super cool that they were going out and getting out there.”
What's the most important thing you've learned?
“The most important thing I've learned is definitely caring about your customers and sending a note in every box just to show them that you care about them. And they know that they have good customer service.”
“We've had some success in the fishing industry. My dad is a former fly fishing guide and we are going to come out with some more polarized fishing glasses to sell to fishing lodges and to guide for their clients. We're planning on coming out with a new pair of ski goggles in 2023 and more models of glasses in 2023. But I think when it stops being fun, then we'll probably stop running it.”
What would you say to inspire other Kidpreneurs?
“If you're thinking about starting a company, go for it. Use your resources. Talk to your family, talk to your friends. Get ideas. If you feel like you can't do it, you can. You have lots of friends, lots of family, many people to help you out. Fall down, pick yourself up, and keep on going.”
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
“One thing that many people find interesting about my company is that I named it after my dog. He is named DAS and he is a silver lab.”