May 16, 2018
CrowdStreet is a premium provider of online commercial real estate investment offerings, technology and services. They are creating a community where the best individual investors and development firms are working together to maximize wealth through commercial real estate.
They recently joined the TechTown pledge in September 2017 to better learn from and connect with the local Portland Tech community. Courtney Moss, Office Manager and TechTown representative at CrowdStreet, led the charge in their process in becoming a Pledge company after employees expressed interest in this unique effort.
Learn more about CrowdStreet’s progress and Courtney’s advice for other companies interested in joining the pledge in our interview with her:
Why did CrowdStreet join the TechTown Diversity and Inclusion Pledge?
We wanted to make the commitment because there was clearly a lot of thought and interest around DEI already, but no clear plan or path forward. TechTown is exciting because it brings together a larger community which gives us an opportunity to work together and to have a greater impact in the Portland area as part of a collective whole. It also brings together a wide variety of experience and an eagerness to learn.
“We were attracted to the TechTown pledge because we didn’t want to reinvent the wheel, but rather learn from other company’s successes and challenges.”
What have been your key take-a-ways since becoming a TechTown Pledge Company
Even though we’ve only been a part of the pledge for 8 months, joining the TechTown Pledge has been very rewarding. It has inspired us to make our own DEI charter where we track our progress quarterly, and we can already see the positive changes and impact to our diversity at CrowdStreet.
One of the greatest things we have learned so far is that although the change can seem slow, it is possible! We see this in our tracking of key metrics on DEI! We have increased our gender diversity in our leadership and company as a whole, started a community volunteering program, and set up our first company sponsored DEI Lunch & Learn session.
We are working on getting more involvement at all levels of the organization and instituting DEI values into the core values of the company. We are continually learning and applying the best ways to make our workplace more inclusive and have appreciated being a part of the DEI community.
(pictured, left to right: Amanda Pritchard, Director of Finance & Operations; Tore Steen, CEO; Courtney Moss, Office Manager)
“We are lucky to have a CEO that was immediately excited about the pledge opportunity.”
What advice would you give other Tech companies looking to create a culture of Diversity and Inclusion?
Based on what we’ve experienced so far, I would encourage companies to start building a culture of inclusion and diversity as soon as possible. Build it into your core values and communicate to everyone you hire from Day 1.
What advice would you give another Portland Tech company looking to join the Pledge?
For other Portland Tech companies thinking about joining the pledge, I would say just do it! It’s a great way to help shape the way Portland Tech looks and is in every company’s best interest in order to stay competitive.
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TechTown PDX is a collection of Portland tech companies that are committed to cultivating a diverse, homegrown talent pipeline and inclusive work environment. We know that in order to make real change, we need to work together to have the difficult conversations to implement strategic programs and to push each other other to do what is right. That’s why each company has taken the TechTown Diversity Pledge and it’s 5 actions that requires collective focus, collaboration and accountability.
Portland tech companies have joined the Diversity & Inclusion Pledge since its initial launch in 2015.