Adaptability Is Critical To Fostering a People-First Culture at VelocityEHS

The culture at VelocityEHS is centered around bringing out the best in people through flexibility, innovation and a commitment to equity.

Written by Lucas Dean
Published on Jul. 27, 2023
Adaptability Is Critical To Fostering a People-First Culture at VelocityEHS
Velocity EHS
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Some company cultures are concretely structured, while others are more fluid, being actively — and continually — created. The former is based on predetermined ideals, while the latter requires continuous evaluation and evolution.

The team at VelocityEHS believes that when companies have a preconceived notion of their culture, they might end up limiting the potential of what it could become and how new team members can contribute to it. The culture may then become a restrictive force, a mold for employees to fit into rather than one that evolves with what each individual brings to the table.

Instead, the culture at VelocityEHS focuses on adaptation and openness. .  

“We look for ‘culture add’ and not ‘fit’,” said Solution Executive Marc Juaire. “We want a diversity of perspectives and experiences that will enhance our team, not just someone who will fit into the current mold.”
 

“We want a diversity of perspectives and experiences that will enhance our team, not just someone who will fit into the current mold.”


As a remote-first company, this distinction — and a commitment to fostering a strong culture in general — is especially important. 

According to a 2022 Gallup survey, only two in ten employees said they felt strongly connected to their company’s culture. Additionally, respondents who worked remotely were less likely to say that they felt connected to the culture than hybrid and in-person employees. 

Gallup data also showed that investments in company culture were well worthwhile, with culture-connected employees 3.7 times more likely to be engaged at work and 37 percent more likely to be thriving. 

So, how can remote-first companies create a unifying culture that is focused on and in service to its people? 

“By prioritizing the well-being, development and engagement of employees, we can create a positive work environment, foster a strong organizational culture, improve employee satisfaction and drive overall business success,” said VP of Human Resources Rachel Kaiser

In an environment where geography — or a physical office — is not shared across the workforce, culture becomes the connective tissue that ties together team members. At VelocityEHS, the task of cultivating culture is ongoing and purposeful. 

 

 Screenshot of a virtual call with 16 screens of people showing terrariums they made.
VelocityEHS 

 

“As we’ve shifted to a Work for All remote-first culture, we’ve had to intentionally think about ways to be more inclusive of all employees and provide opportunities for everyone, no matter their geography,” said SVP and COO Winnie Ip. She added that employees are surveyed multiple times per year to understand where they stand and what can be improved. 

VelocityEHS is on a mission to make workplaces safer and more sustainable — a goal that begins by providing a positive environment where its employees feel valued, energized and connected. 
 

WHAT VELOCITYEHS DOES

VelocityEHS is on a mission to make workplaces safer and more sustainable, offering a platform that helps organizations tackle environmental, social and governance challenges — along with environment, health and safety challenges — through predictive technology.

 

Candid photo of two team members entering the office through a glass door with a VelocityEHS logo on the glass wall next to it.
VelocityEHS

 

 

A Culture For All 

Company cultures can change and grow to reflect what each team member brings to the table. But to build a resilient, adaptable culture, a strong foundation must first be laid. 

At VelocityEHS, norms, communication language, diversity pillars and core values were established to maintain alignment. Likewise, formal programs and clear expectations help reinforce and form the basis of its culture. 

“Culture is also fluid and adapts over time. It can change organically as employees contribute their unique perspectives, experiences and values, so it’s important to be open and understand the needs of teams and employees as culture evolves,” said Kaiser. 
 

“It’s important to be open and understand the needs of teams and employees as culture evolves.”

 

Part of VelocityEHS’ growth has been through acquisition. As a result, new teams have come on board with their own unique cultures. Instead of insisting that these teams adhere to VelocityEHS’ culture, the company evolved to accommodate and adapt with them. 

“We proactively seek to learn from these folks and try to include their cultural norms throughout the company. Our strength is in our diversity of perspectives, experiences, values and traditions,” said Kaiser. 

 

A remote VelocityEHS employee sits on couch with laptop, a dog laying next to her holding a toy in its mouth.
VelocityEHS

 

Common Goals

Before joining VelocityEHS, Marc Juaire had been a customer for 10 years.

“One of the main reasons I joined the VelocityEHS team was the mission of making workplaces safer and more sustainable,” said Juaire. “I have been an environmental, health and safety professional for almost 30 years and it is my passion — my calling.”

This passion for creating better, safer workplaces is one that connects team members to one another and motivates them. Few things are more galvanizing than a collective mission. 

“At its core, VelocityEHS’ work is all about people. I feel lucky to work for an organization so deeply committed to making a positive change in the world and in individuals’ lives,” said Juaire. 
 

“At its core, VelocityEHS’ work is all about people.”

 

As the company and its team members work to improve working conditions for others, it continuously invests in its own employees’ well-being and career advancement. 

“VelocityEHS is committed to creating and maintaining a workplace in which all employees have an opportunity to participate and contribute to the success of the business and are valued for their skills, experience and unique perspectives,” said Juaire. 

 

VelocityEHS team members sitting at a table, talking
VelocityEHS


 

Shared Values

VelocityEHS will evolve, but its core values will always exist as a guiding light. 

“I always like asking candidates to review our core values and choose one that resonates with them and tell me why. We put so much emphasis on our core values because it’s what drives our culture and performance,” said Ip. 

 

VelocityEHS' Core Values

  • Champion Customer Success: Because outcomes matter
  • Built Honest Relationships: Because expectations matter
  • Choose Simple: Because speed matters
  • Be Humble: Because respect matters
  • Make a Difference: Because happiness matters

 

These values don’t just exist as a point of reference or to adorn the company website’s about page; they are the basis for how the company does business and a foundational principle that remains steady in the good times and the bad.  

“When things are stressful, we rely on our core values to ground us. When we have to make a tough decision, our core values help center us,” said Ip. “I’ve always believed that we can teach people new skills and tools, but having good core values is much more important.”

 

“I’ve always believed that we can teach people new skills and tools but having good core values is much more important.”

 

Two VelocityEHS team members in a runner’s pose in outdoor party setting.
VelocityEHS

 

Putting People First 

VelocityEHS’ teams may not share the same time zone or commute to the same office, but by fostering a people-focused culture, its employees remain an important part of the greater whole. 

This culture is one centered on values and broader missions. But what truly distinguishes it is the understanding that diverse perspectives and individual differences are a source of strength.

By creating an environment where everyone feels that their voices are heard, their accomplishments are celebrated and their unique outlooks are valued, VelocityEHS ensures its company culture meets employees where they are.

 

Responses have been edited for length and clarity. Images provided by VelocityEHS.

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