One of my favorite college classes was a course in Business Law that was taught with a heavy emphasis on history. It wasn’t the ‘memorize these dates and names’ brand of history though, what we talked about, week after week, was the long-view history of business – the fact that business started out as a thing that took place in small communities – so small that you had to live next door to the people you bought from and sold to, to see them on a daily basis. The idea that the professor was building on was that much of business law came into being in order to keep business working, as the world got bigger and that community element was no longer in play.
Still, I think that business is best when we work in a community. Jason always says that Seattle is a small world, and West Seattle even smaller. One of the reasons we love West Seattle so much is the sense of community here. Whether we’re buying groceries, playing games, having a drink or getting a cup of coffee, all of our favorite places are those with familiar faces.
As we built our business, that sense of community was important to us too, and it’s been evident in everything we do. Whether we’re helping clients find connections in other trades, connecting good people with companies who need trustworthy hires, or running into people we know on projects we’re helping with, community is always at the forefront of our work. In fact, our client base is such a family that we have found ourselves, more than once, refusing work in the case of a cultural mismatch.
Tomorrow, we’re throwing our first anniversary in our current office space, and taking time out to celebrate the community we’ve been lucky enough to be a part of, and we hope you’ll join us.
Because that sense of community isn’t just lip service, we have been working with several local businesses to plan our party, and we wanted to take a little time today to highlight some of them.
- Cafe Osita is our favorite local coffee shop in the world. Proprietors Andrea and Mike are the heart of the Gatewood neighborhood, and they’re always ready to commiserate about your day, talk sports, obscure live music or philosophy while they make you a cup of locally roasted coffee. If you enjoy a cup of coffee at our open house, it’s thanks to both the coffee beans we bought at their shop and their expertise giving us advice as we learned to get the best possible results out of our little amateur espresso machine.
- Meeples games is our friendly local game store, and our third home. One or both of our kids have been part of some weekly group or other since they opened more than four years ago. Whatever crazy workshop, game or session we’re planning, you can bet we’ll find ourselves leaning on the front counter with one or more of the staff (usually including Laura, the owner) puzzling over which game pieces or glass counters we might use to get our point across, and though we usually find exactly what we need, on the off chance we don’t, Laura is quick to put in special orders. We’re giving away several games, all purchased at Meeples, as raffle prizes at the open house.
- Pecos Pit is a more recent addition to our neighborhood, but a long standing Seattle favorite. They’re only a few blocks away, and it’s an easy place to slip away for a quick lunch. We could hardly call our open house a BBQ if it weren’t for Pecos Pit.
- Husky Deli is one of West Seattle’s oldest beloved icons. They’ve been selling ice cream and deli goods in the junction since 1932, and the owner there is the third generation of his family to run the shop. We tried several side salads before deciding that Husky’s were the hands down winner, and that’s what we’ll have at the party.
- Bakery Nouveau is another shop you can find in the Junction area of West Seattle. They have amazing breads and pastries, and we’re serving some of our favorites at the party in bite sized portions.
- Thriftway is our neighborhood locally owned grocery store, and it has been here since 1988. You can get a cup of coffee while you shop, and find most anything you need, including the ‘Best Cookies in the World’ that we often have toward the end of our training sessions.
- The Beer Junction is another entry in West Seattle’s Junction, and if you’re a fan of beer and haven’t been there, we highly recommend it. They have more beer in one place than you can get anywhere in West Seattle (to my knowledge) and you can find all kinds of interesting brews, especially thanks to the help of the friendly and knowledgeable staff. You can get beer to take with you, or get a pint on tap to enjoy right there.
- Georgetown Brewery needs no introduction if you’re a Seattle-ite who drinks beer. Manny’s is a mainstay of the local beer scene, and it’s a favorite around here, which is why we’ll have a keg of Manny’s on tap at the party.
- Runner up in this list, an outfit that is not local to Seattle, but a small organization we have just added to our list of favorites, ClearWater Gear, who printed our beautiful growlers with a whip fast turnaround time.