Jake Gieschen didn’t originally intend to start his own custom cabinet shop. Woodworking was a hobby and a skill that eventually evolved into a business.
“I started out building small furniture pieces in a two-car garage,” said Gieschen, “Then, I was asked to do a kitchen, and when I finished it, I started showing pictures to contractors.”
One thing led to another, and soon, Gieschen, who had been working for another cabinetmaker, decided to start his own business at age 20. He founded Jake’s Creative Woodworks in 2003, and only four years later earned a spot on the coveted WOOD 100 report, which ranks the nation’s fastest-growing woodworking companies based on their annual growth rate. Jake’s Creative Woodworks was ranked No. 42 on the list published in the July 2007 issue of Wood and Wood Products.
The company, located southeast of Sedalia on Ringen School Road, posted a growth rate of 32.27 percent from 2005 to 2006.
“We were really excited about reaching this milestone in just our third year of business,” Gieschen said, adding that “2007 is shaping up to be an even better year.”
He attributes the company’s success to its focus on customer service and the skill and dedication of his five employees.
“We focus on using the best quality materials, and our guys are very skilled at what they do. They don’t take shortcuts,” Gieschen said. “We want our customers to have high-quality cabinets that last a lifetime.”
About 80 percent of Gieschen’s work is new residential construction. In addition to kitchen cabinets, he builds entertainment centers, furniture, bathroom cabinets and fireplace mantles. He usually constructs the projects in his 9,000-square-foot workshop and then installs them on site.
“Most people know upfront what they want,” he said. “They’ll have a picture or sketch, and we’ll work with them to plan it out and make it happen.”
One of the hallmarks of residential construction is that if you’re good, word spreads fairly quickly.
“My customers have been good about recommending me to their family and friends,” Gieschen said. “Word-of-mouth advertising has been great. It spreads, and it spreads fast.”
Wood and Wood Products is the leading trade magazine published and mailed monthly to more than 44,000 professional woodworkers in the United States and Canada.