Trust me when I say that Seattle blows as a city that is an easy nut to crack upon first moving here. I moved here about seven years ago for university, and EVEN THOUGH I had lived in no less than five cities prior (that means five new friend groups, five new homes, five new jobs – basically, I’m good at the new), it took me one year to find one good friend. Then, it took me about five years to find my great friends.
Because of my miserable beginning, it is my eternal mission while living in Seattle to disallow anyone else to have the same experience. Because I often get questions in my line of work such as: I just moved here! What should I do? or I’m looking for a job! What should I do?, I have honed a specific set of resources for folks who have just moved here and want to 1) make friends and 2) get involved in the city either with a new, meaningful career or by understanding what makes Seattle tick. And I’m finally writing them down.
So! Without further ado, Lindsey’s Guide of What to do When You First Move to Seattle.
1. Subscribe to the Puget Sound Business Journal and read every weekly issue religiously. For someone that is actually interested in making smart, informed choices about their career or real estate decisions based on actual Seattle trends, opening job markets, and industry, the PSBJ is by far the best publication. I learn something new every week.
2. Subscribe to Sol’s Civic Minute. This is the best, free, weekly update on what’s happening around the city. Focused specifically on city policy, real estate, current events, and local events.
3. Check out my job board, which I update on a weekly basis. Again, because of my own job, I receive many openings and hiring requests come across my desk. I record all of them!
4. Reserve a free day at one of these coworking spaces immediately (most provide your first day working from the space free). Coworking spaces are fantastic because they are full of people just like you. Most people choose coworking spaces based on two factors: 1) the aesthetic and 2) the community. Each coworking space is different, which is why you should try them out before joining.
- Impact Hub Seattle. Full Disclosure: this is my coworking space. But I happen to believe that it is a great resource for newbies to Seattle, and we do a pretty good job of inducting each new member in a short, informal interview to learn more about each member’s personal and professional goals so our staff can make appropriate recommendations. And our Thursday Community Lunch and monthly Coffee Collider are great for meeting other people, too. We’re also the largest open-space coworking space in the city, which means we have the majority of people who come and go in the open-space and who are join primarily to connect with others.
- WeWork. The great Gina Phillips is WeWork’s Seattle Lead, and she is very knowledgeable about the Seattle tech scene. WeWork has three locations in Seattle now, and you’ll primarily find well-funded startups and a smattering of Seattle’s tech creatives here.
- Galvanize. This coworking space is a little different in that it’s a coworking space second, and an accredited degree program for computer programming first. You’ll find very tech/software dev/programmers – focused people here.
- Office Nomads. The first coworking space in Seattle, this Capitol Hill location is cozy and full of very friendly staff. Mostly freelance creatives and folks who use this as their everyday office.
- Ada’s. I love this little coworking space and coffee shop in Capitol Hill. They have a small coworking space upstairs, and if you can get on the waiting list for a desk, you’ll be sure to connect with the other folks upstairs.
5. Attend a New Tech Meetup! The great Red Russack and Brett Greene run Seattle’s largest ongoing meetup, and they have spots at the beginning of each meetup for anyone in the audience to get up and make community announcements, including job openings and/or other type meetups.
6. Subscribe to the Town Hall mailing list. They really do have some of the best events in the city, and the crowd who usually attends is the best of Seattle.
7. Read your neighborhood blog! Each neighborhood usually has one – try Googling for it. These are great to learn about tiny events or things happening in your neighborhood to meet others around you.
8. Considering attending some community college classes? GREAT – it’s the best education around. Check out possible opportunities and funding sources on this easy-to-use website.
9. Subscribe to the second most awesome newsletter in town: The Evergrey! Written by two kaleidoscopic Seattle folk, this daily newsletter aims to help locals make the most of their town.
Did this help? Please let me know your own experience or tell me other tips by tweeting @lindseyengh!