Looking to engage — or re-engage — with the Portland startup community? Here are a few tips and tricks, pandemic or no

One of the most confusing things about the Portland startup community is how quiet it is. It’s not because there’s nothing happening. Far from it. And it’s not because people aren’t interested in including new and amazing people like you in their groups or meetups. Honestly, the quiet nature of the community comes from a very positive place: folks around here tend to be aggressively humble. They’re not ones to toot their own proverbial horns or be making a lot of noise about what they’re building.

But for newcomers or folks considering Portland as their next stop, that can make it a whole lot more difficult to figure out how to engage with folks in the community. So I thought I would take a couple of minutes — as I am wont to do at the start of the year — to help document a few resources that may be helpful in getting you more connected to the Portland startup community.

Because we need you to be part of it. Please.

Portland startup community resources

These are some of the main online resources for

  • Portland Startups Slack has the most wide ranging selection of conversations and participants in our community. As of this writing, it has more than 6000 folks on it. It’s totally free and largely community managed. And in a fully remote pandemic riddled world, it can be one of the best ways to connect with people the Portland startup community — whether you happen to live here or not. If you’d like to join, all you have to do is sign up for Portland Startups Slack.
  • Calagator is the aggregated tech calendar for Portland. If you’re looking to meet people. Calagator is the easiest and most efficient way to stay up-to-date on all of the scheduled events in our community. And if you’re organizing events targeted at the startup or tech community, it’s the best way of getting the word out. Bar none.
  • If you’re specifically looking for help or have something to offer, Portland Startups Switchboard can be a great way to connect with the folks. The free site is designed to help people make asks and offers that can be of use to the Portland startup community.

Startup and tech jobs

Sometimes the best way to get connected is in the workplace. But to have a workplace, you need to have a job. So here are some resources that may help in that regard.

  • Mac’s List is one of the most active job boards in the area. It’s got way more than just startups, so if you’re looking for any sort of gig it’s a great place to start.
  • Another active job board can be found at PDX Pipeline. Again, this tends to highlight jobs for all sorts of companies, but you can find startup and tech jobs there with a little filtering.
  • For a wide range of tech jobs, look no further than the Silicon Forest, a collection of companies and jobs from the Portland area, large and small.
  • If you’re only interested in startup and tech jobs, the Silicon Florist job board tends to be a good resource in that regard. Not a very wide range of types of gigs, but if you’re a developer it can be a great place to start your search.

Startup and tech news

If you’re interested in getting a better understanding of what’s happening in the Portland startup community, there are a couple of news outlets that do a good job of covering the latest.

  • The Portland Business Journal covers a wide range of small business news. If you’re particularly interested in startup news, then Malia Spencer is the best journalist in town for that sort of stuff. The biggest challenge here is that a lot of the content lives behind a paywall. So you might consider subscribing to get complete access. And if you’re only interested in news about startups and innovation, Malia has recently started work on a new publication called Portland Inno which promises to keep you in the loop on not only Portland flavored news but startup news from around the country.
  • The longest running and widest ranging coverage of the Portland tech community — from massive tech giants to the smallest of startups — can be found in Silicon Forest from The Oregonian.
  • Given that you’re already here, I’m kind of assuming that you know about Silicon Florist. But it might be helpful to know that you don’t have to show up here everyday. Just subscribe to the Silicon Florist newsletter and you’ll get a weekly email that keeps you in the loop on all of the stories, jobs, and events of interest.

Finally, did someone point you here? Or share information about the community that has been helpful? Maybe consider giving them some kudos. That can be another great way to get them the credit they deserve — and to start getting your name out there in the Portland startup community.

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