Human Resources, Real Estate, and Retail

Q&A: Kristen Deckinga Moore

May 30, 2017
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Kristen Deckinga Moore
Kristen Deckinga Moore. Courtesy Colliers West Michigan

Editor’s note: Each Q&A in the Influential Women enewsletter will feature a woman from the region who’s influential, a rising face in her industry or doing interesting work. Submit tips on potential Q&A subjects to tgortsema at grbj dot com.

Kristen Deckinga Moore is the newest commercial real estate advisor to join Colliers West Michigan

She’s focused on the retail and office sectors and does most of her work in the central city and surrounding neighborhoods. 

For her, real estate is “all about connecting people to places.” She believes that, “People shape their places, as do places shape their people.”

She called her work “rewarding” and said she’s “thrilled to be doing it now at Colliers,” after 15 years of real estate experience throughout Grand Rapids.

Best advice you’ve ever received?

“Choose to be happy.” 

For me, this means adapting to the events and circumstances that present themselves every day.

How did you make your first dollar?

My first real job was building trophies for a local sports shop. It was a humbling summer of measuring the cheap fiberglass shafts, screwing them into square, marble bases and topping them with golden figures. The trophy department was inside an industrial suite with no windows and limited air conditioning, which was torturous for me. I remember my dad saying, “You only have to stick it out for the summer, that’s twelve weeks. You can do harder things, Kristen.” Once I changed my mentality about it, I actually enjoyed listening to the radio while working there and doing something mindless for hours. 

Most-treasured possession?

While my maternal grandfather was in Europe during WWII, he had purchased a golden birdcage with a stuffed yellow finch inside. It winds up, and the bird moves around and sings. My cousins and I listened to it every Sunday when we went to their house for lunch after church. Upon my grandfather’s death, I received it. I don’t know how I was so lucky, because he was everyone’s favorite. 

Dream job?

A traveling food critic

If you were president for a day, you would…?

This is such a loaded question, PASS! In all seriousness, I am trying to stay more focused on what I can do in my little corner of the world. Whether it’s volunteering in a school, helping a local refugee family or supporting affordable housing in Grand Rapids, I am trying to dig in where I am planted.

Last book you read?  

“The Power of Vulnerability,” by Brene Brown 

Last search term you googled?

“comfortable, professional, shoe”

In the professional world of white shirts and blazers, I am always on the hunt for beautiful shoes that can keep up with my running around town and into buildings. That cute little wedge can look and feel good at 8 a.m., but if I want to throw it out the car window by noon, the hunt continues. I am only willing to sacrifice comfort for style a handful of times a year.  

Your worst habit?

My worst habit is also an effective tool, by some standards. 

I find myself thinking that I can “squeeze in just one more thing” before my next appointment. If I am running early before work, I am throwing in a load of laundry and then sprinting into the grocery store. Squeezing in one more thing means I get more accomplished during the day, but it also means I am never early and am often exhausted. 

I am learning the value of sitting still and taking in a few deep breathes. I am working on this.

To unwind, you like to…?

I seem to want to do two very conflicting things: part of me wants to unwind with a neighborhood happy hour on a Friday afternoon; the other part of me wants to purge the house from all clutter and cook a huge meal. 

Dream vacation?

As a kid, my family took an RV and headed out West for three weeks over the summer for the quintessential family vacation to the Grand Canyon. The canyon was incredible, but what we remember most is playing games, taking hikes and having this great adventure together.  

At a different time in my life, a dream vacation might have been something fancy in France. But a dream vacation right now would include my husband, our three children and some RV adventure.

Favorite food?

Cheese! An aged manchego or a double-cream brie is at the top of the list, basically anything on the menu at Aperitivo (charcuterie and wine bar).

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