Game Theory

Portland’s unique HQ for strategy and development can help you realize your full business potential.

When does an annual brunch tradition lead to something much bigger? When it’s in the hands of Ciara Pressler, consultant, brand strategist, and founder of Pregame (503-206-7325), a membership-based professional development organization headquartered at NW 13th Avenue and Lovejoy.

Pressler started to host New Year’s goal brunches for her friends in 2010 when she lived in New York City. She realized they were very effective—her friends weren’t just setting goals, but achieving them. The Portland native returned home in 2014 and expanded her offerings—more brunches, a book, workshops—culminating in the grand opening of Pregame’s “Clubhouse” in 2016.

“The Pearl lends us a certain cachet—within this district, the business alliances are strong. People want to succeed, and they want their neighbors in the area to succeed as well.”

Pregame isn’t a business incubator or co-working space—rather, “it’s a gym for your business goals,” says Pressler. Its core offerings—in-person group training on business subjects like social media and legal contracts—are called “workouts.” “It’s a way to access business experts you’d have to pay thousands a month to have on retainer, a way for people to engage with PR and HR experts and lawyers, and to get a shot of motivation, strategy, and organization,” says Pressler.

New members start with a one-hour, one-on-one kickoff session, which functions as “a full-circle assessment of past, present, and future. We set goals for the next 3 to 12 months,” says Pressler. This costs $97, and there’s no obligation to go any further. If you decide to join Pregame, you get access to workouts, guest speakers, and other events.

Pressler believes that Pregame’s Pearl headquarters set it apart. “We’re a retail space—we connect with some of our best members because they walk in off the street.” Plus, she says, “The Pearl lends us a certain cachet—within this district, the business alliances are strong. People want to succeed, and they want their neighbors in the area to succeed as well.” – Alison Stein | photos by Dan Hawk (main) and Annabel Clark

 

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