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John Folkestad

Co-Founder
CPA, Inactive Certificate
Business Operations

How would you describe your role, purpose or the outcomes you drive?

Chief Strategy Officer, Cheerleader, Master of Play. I’m not only concerned about driving outcomes for client companies and consultants but creating a team environment. It’s said that the average person spends roughly one third of their life working, why not be successful AND have fun.

How has your previous work experience prepared you for your role with Salo?

One of my first jobs was at a toy store and I learned you could have fun at work. Audit at Deloitte taught me how to meet with a client and gain an understanding of their business. My last role at an International staffing firm taught me the basics of the people business. I realized that you could modify the model and drive longer term positive outcomes for both clients and our employees.

How do you achieve business outcomes?

I love to figure out what is the fastest and most sure way to drive the outcome. Invariably, the solution lies with either an expert that has driven that outcome (often many times) in the past or bringing in a “figure it out” generalist who has a proven track record of success. In my opinion, EXPERIENCE TRUMPS METHODOLOGY.

What impact did your upbringing have on the way you approach your work and life?

My parents always encouraged me to work hard, save my money and follow my dreams. This value gave me the courage and capability to quit my job the week of 911, sit out the one year non-compete, and start Salo with Amy Langer on October 7th, 2002.

How would your friends describe you?

My high school friends nicknamed me the “Evil Scout”. I am an Eagle Scout that has a penchant for causing trouble and having fun.

List three interesting things about you, but only one of them needs be true.

Starting in high school and for a period of roughly five years I included the word “juxtaposition” in everything I wrote (including public accounting work papers). Since I got struck by lightning I’ve been able to channel people’s psychic energy, but I only use it for good. As a small child growing up in Bloomington, I used to have to get up a half an hour before I went to bed to go work in the mine.

What is your favorite thing about working at Salo?

The team cares about our clients / employees desired outcomes AT LEAST as much as their own interests. This is a high performance team that has fun and works in harmony. I love working here.