Faces Of Fargo Business: Preston Braathen

Written by: Andrew Jason

Photo by Gary Ussery 

Commercial Loan Officer: Dakota Business Lending

About: I am a native North Dakotan and I lived in Fargo until 10 years old and then went through high school in Maple Grove, MN. I made my way back to Grand Forks for college at the University of North Dakota and began a career in the banking industry. While in that industry, I grew a fondness for business and how it works. Now I work at Dakota Business Lending and get to help businesses grow and become better. I am currently working on a local business podcast called The ACTIVATE U Podcast! We are allowing local businesses to tell their stories in hopes for other business owners or hopeful owners to learn and grow local business in the Midwest! I am working every day to help make myself better and help the people around me as well. It’s not easy, but it is worth it!

Worst piece of advice he’s ever received:

“You can’t do that.” There are things you should not do, yes. But, anyone can do anything they want to do.

What keeps him up at night:

Hopefully nothing. I try not to carry too many things with me because that leads to stress. If you are being kept awake by something, it means you just have not taken care of it when you should have. 

What he’d give a TED Talk on:

Your reactions are your biggest asset.

How the reality of his job differs from people’s perception of it:

Being in Business Development, we get pegged with the idea that we are just out for numbers. We are not. We are looking to assist businesses to make an impact in the industries they work in. We utilize programs that offer the best options for businesses and are here to and prove they are worth your time! 

What’s one thing the local business community could do to help Dakota Business Lending?

Ask us questions, we are always looking to connect people to the right answers. Even if it is not us. 

Media recommendations:

“How to Win Friends and Influence People”

How to Win Friends & Influence People

The ACTIVATE U Podcast

The ACTIVATE U Podcast

What’s his “why”? 

Leave every situation better then it was. 

What part of your job would you use an “easy button” on, if you could?

Scheduling, I love having a schedule but I am terrible at writing everything down. 

One characteristic he believes every great leader should possess:

Humility: Anyone who cannot treat others well, should not be leaders. 

One way he fosters creativity:

 Ask questions and test the status quo.

Local/state resources he recommends:

Women’s Business Center, Small Business Development Center, Veterans Business Outreach, SCORE

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