TEVET’s culture cornerstones include: service to our country, customers, and community; focusing on families (in any sense of the term – TEVET, our “extended family”, and our personal families); continued development opportunities (both soft and hard skills); and celebrating all wins whether they are an individual’s steppingstone goal or a big win for the entire company.
Service to Our Country, Customers, and Community
As an SDVSOB and HUBZone small business, service is taken to heart. Many of our employees have served in the United States Armed Forces. Their definition and commitment to service shape our approach to serving our customers, each other, and our community.
Read our blog – Our Veteran Difference.
Being within a HUBZone, we have either personally struggled or seen others do so. HUBZone stands for Historically Underutilized Business Zone. The HUBZone program was created by the SBA to assist small businesses within these areas and to stimulate future prosperity both in increased employment and revenue.
Read our blog - The Importance of the HUBZone Program.
Our hometown (headquarters) is Greeneville, Tennessee. Traditionally, we live in an agricultural area with transient manufacturing businesses and jobs. And with ups and downs in our local economy, the resources in our area have been stretched thin over time. Not only income but also educational opportunities, leadership, outreach, and basic needs have declined. That is where TEVET’s service comes into play.
We take an active role within our HUBZone community. Through organizations like Holston Home for Children, we assist at-risk youth in creating a brighter future through positive interactions, guidance, leadership, and educational opportunities. With our local high school JROTC program, we award a yearly scholarship so that a graduating cadet can accomplish their first solo flight. Every Spring, we fundraise, walk, and support our local chapter of March of Dimes/March for Babies so that new families are educated for healthy starts. Throughout the year, we work with our local DAV chapter and veteran organizations to assist our veteran population. And with our close collaboration with the Greene County Heritage Trust, we revitalize our downtown community by renovating and managing the historic Capitol Theatre.
Families – Our Odd Perspective of “Extended” Family that Makes All the Difference
At TEVET, the word “family” takes on more than one meaning. Yes, we believe in the basic definition about the one that you come from and you find at home. But we also see value in the ones that you create while away from home, either at work with your colleagues or those you serve. And we have both.
The TEVET family can be defined as our fellow coworkers, our suppliers, and our customers. Odd, I know for us to include those that are outside of our organization. But, with our service and account-based teams, we truly get to know the people we work with over the phone or through email each day. Trust me, our Account Managers know how many dogs you have and when their birthdays are along with the specific configurations you need to complete your test system. Balance is healthy and possible, but at TEVET it is a given.
Our internal TEVET family is just as important. Sure, we may work on different teams, in different departments, and across the United States but that doesn’t mean we don’t know each other’s favorite colors. Ok. We might not know that about everyone, but what we do know is that we can rely on one another. We know each other’s strengths and who we can turn to when our skills fall short of a “strength.” This team mindset has created the success that TEVET has known since Day 1, over 15 years ago!
Continued Development Opportunities – We Never Stop Learning
Even though we live in the adult world, we are still full of wonder at heart. We are intrigued about the “what ifs” and possibilities that not only the innovations that our customers are creating but also on how we can better serve them.
We believe that we are never too old to learn something new. Old dogs with new tricks are great due to the experience that we have gained while getting older. Therefore, each month, we take time to hold internal seminars. These seminars can include hard (i.e. technical training) or soft (i.e. clear communication) skills. The seminars are led by both internal and external lecturers. They are informal with an open forum for discussions, questions, and new perspectives. The collaborative learning environment is a catalyst for our individual employees and TEVET as a whole. Here we grow as individuals, as a company, and create the solutions that best serve ourselves internally and our external customers.
Celebrating the Little Wins Along the Way – Every Win is an Accomplishment
In the daily grind, it is easy to overlook the small wins that make the large wins possible. Whether that is getting a response from that one decision-maker that never seems to open their email let alone reply to you or wrapping up the first PO for a new customer, those are the small wins that make a difference in the long run.
Awards, becoming the industry’s preferred small business, and corporate-wide contracts don’t come easy or happen overnight. So, as we celebrate those, we also take time once a month to celebrate the daily actions – tasks, team interactions, and attitude – that are the foundation for big successes.
During our Fun Fridays (the 1st Friday of every month), we step away from our desks to come together and reset. We have teambuilding exercises, good food, and share success stories from the past month. We get back to what it means to be part of the TEVET family, especially after the rush any month (especially fiscal year-end) can bring.