CES 2017: 'Parks and Recreation' Actor Nick Offerman on His Toughest Business Challenge

Besides playing Dick McDonald in the upcoming Ray Kroc biopic, the actor also runs a woodshop.

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

Stay informed and join our daily newsletter now!
Will be used in accordance with our Privacy Policy
CES 2017: 'Parks and Recreation' Actor Nick Offerman on His Toughest Business Challenge
Image credit: Courtesy American Greetings
Entrepreneur Staff
News Director
2 min read

Entrepreneur is on the ground at this year's Consumer Electronics Show. Check back for highlights from the event as well as insights from thought leaders and innovators.

Nick Offerman has brought the laughs as Ron Swanson on Parks and Recreation, smooth talked as lawyer Karl Weathers in the second season of Fargo and plays one of the McDonald brothers in the upcoming Ray Kroc biopic The Founder, but he also really likes to make things out of wood.

The 46-year-old actor, who built sets and props while attending theater school, eventually opened his own woodshop after moving to Los Angeles from his home state of Illinois. Offerman Woodshop employs nine, according to its website, and sells custom-made tables, chairs, beds and other items such as moustache combs.

Related: The Important Entrepreneurship Lesson From Jessica Alba and Sarah Michelle Gellar

Despite having a big-name actor behind a company, Offerman faces hurdles like other entrepreneurs. It's the artisanal aspect that provides Offerman his greatest business challenge.

"For us, it's weird. We put a lot of effort towards not growing our business," he told Entrepreneur during CES 2017. (He was there as a spokesman for American Greetings, who cleverly presented the greeting card as a #DeviceLikeNoOther.) "If our business were to take off by say, offering an Offerman line of furniture, that's not something you can make in a shop in an artisanal fashion, unless we add 20 employees and work around the clock. That's not fun. Part of the reason we work in a woodshop is because it's fun and we enjoy it."

Related: 5 Tips for Dealing With Explosive Growth

While Offerman has a high-paying day job, he's concerned about supporting his staff financially and keeping them happy. Part of his strategy is following the example of Christian Becksvoort, a Maine-based woodworker who Offerman calls a personal hero and who has appeared on Parks and Recreation. According to Offerman, Becksvoort spends 60 percent of his time making things in his shop and the other time doing paperwork, researching clients and gathering supplies.

"I took that as pay attention to the nuts and bolts of your business. It's not all about getting to carve canoes," he said. "Understand that there is a lot of hard work besides just having fun.”

More from Entrepreneur

Get heaping discounts to books you love delivered straight to your inbox. We’ll feature a different book each week and share exclusive deals you won’t find anywhere else.
Jumpstart Your Business. Entrepreneur Insider is your all-access pass to the skills, experts, and network you need to get your business off the ground—or take it to the next level.
Create your business plan in half the time with twice the impact using Entrepreneur's BIZ PLANNING PLUS powered by LivePlan. Try risk free for 60 days.

Latest on Entrepreneur

Entrepreneur Media, Inc. values your privacy. In order to understand how people use our site generally, and to create more valuable experiences for you, we may collect data about your use of this site (both directly and through our partners). By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the use of that data. For more information on our data policies, please visit our Privacy Policy.