At Verkada, we strongly believe that the company’s long term success is directly tied to the diversity of our employees. We strive to hire the smartest people from all walks of life, regardless of their background, and believe it’s critical to strengthen their sense of belonging so they can thrive in our community. Verkada has come a long way since the creation of our
last year, but there’s always more that can be improved.
As the executive sponsor of the MCC, I’m proud to announce our newest co-chair, Dom Bennett, who will be taking an active role alongside Maryanne Gad to ensure that we continue to build new ways to celebrate our diverse culture and foster a greater sense of inclusiveness.
About Dom Bennett
Dom Bennett was born and raised in Brooklyn, but like many first and second generation Americans from NYC, his parents did everything to immigrate from Jamaica to the US in hopes to find a better future for themselves and their future generations. Dom is an extension of his parents, embracing their Jamaican heritage and furthering their goals in life through his own. He speaks Patwa, goes back to Jamaica often and is very close to his family. Jamaicans love to dance and celebrate life, that’s what Dom cherishes most. The cliche mentality of “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” is ingrained in the culture and Dom’s parents are most concerned with his happiness above anything else in his life. Dom is also incredibly passionate about Jeet-Kune-Do and used to teach the martial art in Manhattan. He grew up watching Bruce Lee movies with his dad and channels Bruce Lee’s mentality everytime he faces a challenge he can’t easily overcome. If you ever need to find Dom at work, just search for the Bruce Lee poster above his desk.
Dom was previously an IT Engineer at Datadog but felt that he was being pigeon holed as the company grew. Having realized that he also possessed the sales gene, he wanted to marry both skill sets and started looking for a solutions engineer role elsewhere. When he learned about Verkada’s products and the overall vision of the integrated commercial building, he immediately saw the future.
“Verkada is literally doing everything we see in futuristic movies, even down to how the products should look and feel.” - Dom
The kicker that pushed Dom over the edge was that Verkada is a security company and his background is in Information Security & Forensics. It was clear that Verkada was a company where Dom could add impact and leverage his skill sets.
Improving Inclusiveness and Diversity at Verkada
Dom believes that Verkada has a work hard, play hard culture but that we often forget to celebrate the inherent diversity that is already present at Verkada.
“We all have work obligations and responsibilities but we need to spend more time celebrating all our backgrounds and what makes us who we are.” - Dom
As the MCC Co-Chair Dom hopes to tackle several mechanisms that can help us better understand each other and accelerate diversity at Verkada. This includes the following ideas:
- International Lunches once a week.
- Presenting and discussing art collections from different cultures.
- Improving the interview experience to make sure we add more diverse members in our interview panel, especially if the candidate is from a diverse background.
- MCC Swag to bolster a sense of inclusiveness.
- Adding more speaking panels on current event topics.
It is ultimately appreciation and education that helps all of us cherish and understand each other’s backgrounds and this is how we make sure everyone feels like they belong at Verkada.
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