April 23, 2014

You'll Get a Kick Out of This: An Inside Look at Kickstarter

Kickstarters in-house theater sits fifty
and is dedicated to the showing of various
kickstarter projects.
For the headquarters of the biggest crowdfunding website in the world, Kickstarter’s front door in Greenpoint, Brooklyn was disarmingly small and unassuming. Behind that plain wooden door is an international operation run by eighty-one employees divided into the following departments: Marketing, Design, Engineering, Community Services, Finance, Management, and Product Design.  This tour of Kickstarter was part of Pratt Success’s Gotham Tours, an extension of the Center of Career and Professional Development (CCPD).

As Pratt students, we came to Kickstarter to make connections and discover the behind-the-scenes magic that makes Kickstarter’s net worth close to eight billion USD. “This building was once an abandoned pencil factory”, says Victoria, a member of Kickstarter’s Outreach team. There are just three floors. The walls are a combination of wooden beams, unfinished concrete walls, and the smooth painted variety. Several windows overlook a Japanese garden in the center of the complex, making the space airy and open. Everyone looked productive and relaxed. Even some of the people who walked by gave us a smile, including Kickstarter’s Founder and CEO Yancey Strickler.

The high point was when someone asked if there was any particular major that Kickstarter favored when selecting candidates, because Victoria replied, “Just send us an email at jobs@kickstarter.com with your resume and portfolio along with a cover letter telling us why you’re interested in working with us”. Victoria went on to mention that the type of degree, if any at all, doesn’t matter. For a list of Kickstarter’s current job openings, Victoria told us to visit kickstarter.com/jobs.
Victoria (far left), tells students all about Kickstarter's small, but ambitious operation.
After the tour, Victoria insisted on shaking each one of our hands. We thanked her for showing us around the headquarters and headed out the door. As the wooden front door closed behind us, I caught one last glimpse of Kickstarter before it vanished behind that inconspicuous wooden door. 

Check out more images of the Kickstarter tour:

Kickstarter's main office space is nothing more than a long hall of large tables
where employees gather together each day to share ideas and projects.  

Don't feel like working in the main space, then move to Kickstarter's own little library for some scholarly quiet.  
This space is filled with quiet nooks where employees can plop down and get to work.

Victoria (far left) tells students all about the future rooftop parties Kickstarter is looking forward to hosting,
as a means of promoting croundfunding projects and the business itself.

At the center of Kickstarter's HQ is a courtyard garden, bordered by high glass walls,
which employees can look down on from nearly every room in the building.

A rooftop garden with a view.

by Adrienne Arthur
photos by Britt Gettys

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