A Day in the Life at a Climate Tech Startup
Written by Zoe Banks
What do you picture when you imagine working at a startup? Maybe you see heavy workloads for a small number of workers, hectic schedules, tight budgets, all in a dusty garage in Silicon Valley. Maybe you imagine once monthly massages, weekly ultimate frisbee, shared workspace, and free lunch on Mondays. You wouldn’t be wrong! And while anyone who has worked at a startup before can agree that the culture can be chaotic, here at Raise Green, the good (virtual) company makes it a whole lot easier to push through the tough times - and have a good one while you’re at it.
So, what does that actually look like? As you’d expect, this year is a bit different than our usual. We aren’t gathering in Somerville around a conference table with our coffees, chatting about the unpredictable New England weather. Instead, similarly to many other businesses today, all employees at Raise Green are working remotely, scattered throughout the country across 3 different time zones.
We may be distant in location but the alignment in our passions and goals allows us to stay close. So let’s dive into what usually goes down at Raise Green during a work day, shall we?
POV: You’re in San Francisco, CA. It's 8:55 am on a Monday morning. You’ve just finished breakfast, grabbed your coffee, and finally got yourself to sit down at your desk and start your work day.
9 am - It’s go time. Coffee in hand, us West Coasters open our computers, and set ourselves to ‘active’ on Slack, signaling to our East Coast co-workers they can finally bother us with messages and task updates. The team begins preparing for both individual and collaborative tasks: organizing in Asana, catching up on Slack messages with the latest climate tech updates, and reading any unread emails from coworkers or partners. Meanwhile, our founders have been up and running for a few hours, busy with meetings for various Techstars + ABN Amro Future of Finance accelerator and mentor programs starting as early as 4am PST.
10:30 am - Daily check in begins! Each employee logs onto the daily coworking line to summarize accomplishments, incomplete tasks, and any blockers they might be facing. Typically run by our COO Matthew Moroney, this meeting is usually filled with high quality dad-jokes, laughs, smiles, and collaboration to start the day off on a good note.
12 pm - Some of us take a lunch break, while the overly ambitious - or overly booked - employees chug along through their day. A somewhat quiet time of day for those of us on the West Coast, while those elsewhere are long into the post-lunch grind. The Marketing Team connects on weekly campaigns and goals, meeting to strategize on how to convince developers to use crowdfunded investors rather than hedge funds. The originator team in and out of meetings with issuers, updating agreements and other lengthy documents along the way. The sales team meets to find better ways to draw attention to the power and importance of climate tech investments between various calls with current and potential investors. The website team meets with consultants and fellow technicians to improve user experience, analyzing the data and performance of our current technologies for better understanding. The founders slowly but surely get through their back-to-back meetings. (In case you’re wondering: yes, we do have to add Google Calendar reminders for our founders to take breaks to do normal human things like drinking water, eating lunch or taking a break.)
2 pm - All hands on deck! The once-weekly, company-wide gathering begins. A larger than usual number of both local and international coworkers and partners log onto the call - this is the moment when new team members realize that there are a lot more people involved in this than they realized. Although this meeting only happens once a week on Mondays, it's a crucial part of our routine and success as a company. Our founders hit us with all updates on current offerings, behind the scenes activities, and any other exciting information. Members who are unable to make our regular meeting times have an opportunity to chime in with their own updates on the innovative work they’ve been doing. A great chance to check for updates on projects and tasks. Plus, a bit of a break from the hard work we are all putting in.
3 pm - By now most of us are finished with meetings for the day and are left with any tasks we have yet to complete. Some people log onto the coworking line to collaborate and others take on tasks individually. With our founders being involved in the accelerator and mentor programs, there is rarely a lack of tasks for people to complete and often entails employees contributing to tasks outside of their specialty, helping out however possible.
5 pm - This marks the end of the work day for most, while our founders and a handful of others continue to work on miscellaneous tasks that were left incomplete for the day. Seeing as remote work can be done from pretty much anywhere, 5 pm doesn’t always mark the end of the work day. The blessing and curse of remote work, depending on who you ask.
And there you have it! A Day in the life at Raise Green. While a work day at this company may not seem special to most people, the collective positive attitude, work ethic, and desire for positive change makes it easy for me and my coworkers to stay passionate and remain motivated to work hard and learn more each day.
“Onward and upward,” as our CEO Franz Hochstrasser always reminds us. That while this may just be another mark on the resume for some of us, it’s also a chance to grow and learn more about yourself and your passions. A chance to try new things, challenge yourself, and get out of your comfort zone. Holding us to high expectations, allowing us the creative freedom to bring our own solutions, suggestions, and ideas to the table, all while providing constant support and reminders that we are making a difference in this fight for a cleaner and greener future.
At Raise Green, the alignment in the devotion and motivation in the fight for a cleaner, just, and more sustainable future is the agent for positive and impactful change.
Want to get in on the action? We have two open positions! Check it out: