Mathilde Delorme started working at Montreal-based C3 Solutions Inc. right out of university and felt pretty certain she wouldn’t be staying too long since it was her first job. That was six and a half years and a few job titles ago.
Now an operational excellence manager with the yard management and dock scheduling software company – a position created for her – Delorme says the interesting career path has been one reason she hasn’t wanted to leave.
“They make sure each person always keeps learning and has a place in the organization and that they can clearly see how they can develop or evolve as they go along,” says Delorme. “When they hire people, they hire them for who they are and what they can provide, not for what they know at that point.”
There’s almost no better example of the opportunities at C3 than Elise Crevier, who was hired in human resources almost 20 years ago and moved through various positions before she became company president last year.
“It’s pretty impressive how many people we have who have celebrated their 20th anniversary here,” Delorme adds. “There aren’t a lot of tech companies that can say the same thing. And to me, it’s because people are given a chance to evolve – they aren’t labelled and put into categories.”
Over those years, the company has grown from a handful of employees to almost 50 full-time staff in Canada. Through that, Crevier says, maintaining the company’s values and culture has been of prime importance. In fact, C3 even created a happiness officer position so the culture was not diluted by the increase in company size.
That commitment to culture even extends to the work the company takes on. “Anything that does not serve us as a company, a family, we won’t take on,” says Crevier. “It has to be good not just for our business but for our employees and our soul. We have strong values around that.”
Regular times dedicated to socializing together – monthly cinq à septs, games nights, a volleyball league and a company band, among other things – as well as charitable work help to keep the spirits lifted.
But C3 also fosters a culture of independence, as Delorme calls it. “It’s what really keeps me here,” she says. “They really allow people to take initiative and develop into what they want to be. They really try to leverage each person’s strength. Each person is part of the company for a reason.”
And the impetus to do their best work is fuelled by a feeling of camaraderie and accountability to each other, no matter what level the employee. “I don’t manage people, but I often have to lead people and I always feel that it’s well received,” she adds. “I never feel any resistance because ‘you’re not my boss.’”
The company support for each employee extends to the inevitable tougher times as well. If someone needs help, is not feeling well or is going through something difficult, a special committee puts together a plan to help. That may come in a variety of forms, from a more flexible work schedule to finding resources.
“Our vision is to keep employees for a long time, and that’s what’s happening,” says Crevier. “When people have been served with that kind of care, they care in return. So it builds a loyalty and even love. It really builds something strong.”
More from Canada’s Top Small and Medium-Sized Employers
Advertising feature produced by Canada’s Top 100 Employers, a division of Mediacorp Canada Inc. The Globe and Mail’s editorial department was not involved.