By: Mac Prichard, Founder & Publisher, Mac’s List

Three key ideas are crucial in the local work culture: creativity, collaboration, and passion. Once you understand these, you can start to get involved and build your career within our wonderful work community. I hope you use this advice as a jumping off point.

Start showing up and getting involved. Meet the people who make our professional community great. And soon, your Portland career will soar to new heights.


Creativity is baked into the work culture in Portland. Portland is home to over 100 creative and design agencies, including design titans like Widen+Kennedy. But imagination and ingenuity aren’t limited to creative industries. They are the cornerstones of Portland’s identity, and creative approaches are valued in may workplaces through the city. If you’re looking for a job in Portland, let your creativity shine.

Foster your creativity

Showcase your creativity in your professional life. Identify ways to be creative in your career. Whether you attend a creative event like the weekly Drink & Draw, study a new approach to your work, or learn a new skill just for fun, keep your sense of curiosity alive and talk about your creative pursuits in your professional life.

Explore creativity in Portland

Check out the Portland Creative List to research local creatives and agencies once you’re in town. Attend Creative Morning talks on Friday mornings. They have a new speaker and topic every month.


Despite being a mid-size city, Portland is at its essence still a small town. Finding a job here is all about who you know. Luckily, most Portlanders are happy to meet you to and share ideas and opportunities. You could find a new job by chatting with someone at an industry event or at your local coffee shop. Portland’s most successful professionals will tell you to be open to others. Collaborate and connect with other professionals to discover new job opportunities and tap into the hidden job market.

Set up informational interviews

My favorite Portland job search tip is to do more informational interviews. Ask people to meet for a 30 minute coffee meeting and ask them questions about their career. Learn how they got where they are, and ask them for advice. Then, ask ” Who else should I talk to?” Soon you’llĀ  have a strong network (and a Portland-signature coffee buzz).

Create a network

Find the right type of networking for you. Portland has dozens of workshops, seminars, panel discussions, mixers and more where you can collaborate and connect with like-minded professionals, whether you work in tech, nonprofits, marketing, or buisness.


In Portland, your passion matters. Here, you can take what excites you, and turn it into a long-term career. If you’re passionate about education, the environment, animal welfare, racial and gender equality, or any other social cause, you’ll find a great local organization where you can find meaningful work. Not only in Portland’s nonprofit scene a fixture , our B Corp community is also unparalleled. Whether you want to work for a non-profit or for profit organization, you can find an employer who shares your vision for a better community and a better world.

Highlight your passion and be authentic

Showcase your passions in your cover letter and on your resume and be honest about what drives your career goals.

Volunteer for a local organization

Scope HandsOn Greater Portland’s Calendar for Portland volunteer opportunities. You’ll find local organizations that need your help and can put your passion to work. BONUS: volunteering is another way to build your professional network!

Visit for more career advice and resources.