September 2020: Burn It Down

Carlo Proietto

To understate a Covid silver lining, 2020 has been, if nothing else, a remarkable opportunity to rethink everything. My friends have been considering big changes – or taking the leap and going for it. Moving across the country. Buying the house. Doing IVF. Getting divorced. Getting back together. Confronting family members about long-hidden issues. Finally leaving New York. Nothing sparks change like a crisis. Limping along with systems that aren’t working just doesn’t cut it anymore when major events expose weaknesses that threaten core values, connection, and opportunity. Let’s hope our personal reinventions are foreshadowing of change in our country. […]

Jelani Memory on A Kids Book About, Startup Funding, and Following Your Purpose

A Kids Book About

Jelani Memory started a tech company, raised 30 million in venture capital, and left it at the height of its success to start… a publishing company. We asked Jelani about his startup successes, his new company A Kids Book About, and why going analogue in a digital world is a move worth making. What is your mission behind A Kids Book About? We are on a mission to make kids books that matter. Books that are about all the challenging, empowering, and important topics that kids experience every day. Kids’ lives are complicated, and our mission is to help kids and […]

July 2020: Awakening

never waste a good crisis

And then suddenly, everyone woke up. Well, not everyone. And not fully awake. But no one can deny that the past month has seen a remarkable wave of increased awareness in America about the perpetual problem of racism, and how society cannot be healthy when we insist on viewing ourselves as individuals whose actions and worldview don’t affect anyone rather than part of a system where everything is connected. To me, waking up is the point. It’s the process. As in, THE process. The purpose of life. To be continually evolving, learning, growing, connecting. It’s difficult because there is no finish […]

Stephen Green on The Numbers, Being Seen, and Experiencing Positive Change

Stephen Green

In The Interview: Episode #09, Ciara Pressler interviews Stephen Green, economist, speaker, startup advisor and “recovering” venture capitalist. Stephen and Ciara talk about… The numbers: why investing in local business and black- and brown-owned businesses benefits us all The importance of having a community that you feel you belong in How racism manifests in the startup world Recent local and global events Stephen Green is a Pregame Coach and advocate for small businesses, buying local, and supporting founders of color. Green is the creator of Pitch Black, the pitch competition for black founders, has been an executive at Pensole, in […]

An American Intervention

whitney plantation

Photo: The author inside a human cage at The Whitney Plantation, the only American plantation restored to honor the memory and plight of enslaved African people. Welcome to the week of waking up. I am watching the stream of Official Statements from various organizations from the back of the room, leaning against the wall with my arms crossed, side of my mouth turned up and brow furrowed. This week of black squares on social media has been what the rainbow logo is to Pride week: easy, convenient, trendy. Meaningless unless followed by tangible, measurable action. Businesses that declare support for […]

My Career Story: Ciara Pressler, Pregame Editor

PDBA Awards 2019

Name: Ciara Pressler Current Job: Founder & Head of Content at Pregame Current Place: Portland, OR  Hometown: The setting of Anchorman Age: 41 What I wanted to be when I grew up: Jem from Jem & The Holograms College degree: BS in Communication and Minor in Music from Seattle Pacific University What do you love about what you do? I love helping people see themselves as bigger and more momentous and more capable than they were brave enough to think of before. What is the biggest challenge? All of my biggest challenges are internal. How I think about myself and my own possibilities. Also, support! […]

June 2020: Career Stories

map

Watching President Obama’s virtual commencement addresses in May, I was inspired to do something to support this year’s grads. If I could give them one gift, what would it be? The answer: self confidence. Not in the swagger sense (although I wish them some of that too). I’d wish them that centered, calm state that they’ve got this, that things will work out fine, that it’s all good, and that a sense of “it’s all just a game” can relieve the anxiety of feeling like you have to have it all perfectly planned out from the kickoff. The best way […]

Steve Potestio on Who’s Hiring, Staying Relevant, and Putting In the Work

Steve Potestio

In The Interview: Episode #07, Ciara Pressler interviews Steve Potestio, co-founder and CEO of Mathys+Potestio. Steve and Ciara talk about… Staying active throughout a job search How working remotely has forced companies and employees to be much more flexible Shifting away from finding localized talent with a generalized move towards remote office environments Staying relevant in the job market How to run a chill business with a positive team culture Steve Potestio is a co-founder and CEO of Mathys+Potestio, Oregon’s largest recruitment firm for the creative/digital industries. In 2019, M+P was recognized as one of the fastest growing staffing firms […]

Adam Huttler on MonkeyPod, Investments, and What Makes a Great Founder

Adam Huttler

In The Interview: Episode #05, Ciara Pressler interviews Adam Huttler, founder, CEO, and expert in business model innovation and revenue strategies for mission-driven organizations. Adam and Ciara talk about… Running a national nonprofit How to know when to stick with a project or move on to something else Building a product that utilizes a wide skill set but yet specific enough to gain a market share What funders look for in startups Practices that lead to success Red flags to avoid in pitching ideas Adam Huttler is the founder and CEO of MonkeyPod, an all-in-one software platform for nonprofit organizations […]

Pia Silva on Building a Business, Defining Success, and Reaching Goals

Pia Silva

In The Interview: Episode #04, Ciara Pressler interviews Pia Silva, entrepreneur, speaker, Forbes contributor, and author of Badass Your Brand. Pia and Ciara talk about… Chasing freedom and what it takes to find it How to create a business that truly fits your talents and interests Exploring and honing a client basis Determining a segment or niche Evaluating priorities Why you shouldn’t be scared of the numbers Pia Silva is a brand strategist, entrepreneur, author, and speaker who helps fellow entrepreneurs badass their brand and build a lucrative lifestyle business full of freedom. She has been featured on MSNBC’s Your […]