In this Faces of Unity post, we’re spotlighting Unity’s HR Program Manager in Montreal, Brent Caverly. Read on to learn more about Brent’s career journey, his role with the LGBTQ+ ERG, and the celebrities he’s met along the way.
What do you do at Unity?
I help coordinate our onboarding program, working closely with our amazing IT and HR Operations teams to ensure everything is ready for new employees on day one. I also help manage the onboarding schedule and give presentations about Unity to our new hires.
Tell us about your role with the LGBTQ+ Employee Resource Group (ERG). What inspires you to be a leader?
I've been on the LGBTQ+ ERG committee for two years now and it has been such a fulfilling experience. We look at many aspects of work life, including recruitment and retention, professional development, and community engagement. We also host events and workshops with different departments to ensure Unity’s messaging and training is inclusive. Most importantly, we build community – a safe space where we can come together, share experiences and stories, help each other, and have fun!
Our community inspires me to be a leader. Every day I'm humbled and in awe of the incredible work queer people are doing, not just at Unity, but everywhere. It pushes me to be better. I'll share a quick story that drove home for me the importance of groups like our ERGs. One of our interns joined the LGBTQ+ ERG last summer, and we ask new members to introduce themselves if they feel comfortable. This intern left their camera off because they were worried they might get too emotional, having never been a part of a community like this or spent time around this many queer people. For me, that’s what it's all about: providing a space for people to be themselves and feel like they belong.
Any interesting jobs before working at Unity that led you to where you are today?
I've had quite the career journey. I used to be a hairstylist and got to meet the likes of Nelly Furtado, Annie Murphy (Schitt's Creek for the win!), Jamie Oliver (who has a very specific breakfast he likes to eat), and a few others. But, I realized it wasn't the industry for me and wanted something that gave me more of a work-life balance, because working weekends and holidays is no fun. I ended up working for a couple startups which brought me into the tech space, and then I found Unity and haven't looked back.
What are your favorite things about Unity?
The people, for one. Everybody is so nice, welcoming, and willing to help. It doesn't matter who they are or where they are, everyone has been kind and helpful when I needed it. For my favorite Unity value, I would normally say In It Together because I truly believe teamwork makes the dream work, however, I'm actually going to say Go Bold. I love that you can have a big, outside-the-box idea and people really listen. Often, that initiative is implemented. It's okay if it doesn't work, but there’s an openness to trying things.
Can you share a piece of career advice for others in the industry?
I've learned over the years that you can have amazing people who will advocate for you in your career, but at the end of the day your biggest advocate is yourself. Know your worth, and don't be afraid to speak up or go for that opportunity, even if you don't think you’re fully qualified. You never know until you try, and take those fails or opportunities that didn't work out as opportunities to learn and grow. Nothing is ever a waste if you can take something away from the experience and learn from it.
Can you share a few fun facts about yourself?
I play competitive water polo which has allowed me to travel internationally for tournaments. Now I have water polo friends all over the world!
I also lived in Australia for a few years and love to travel. I can’t wait to get back on a plane and go somewhere again soon.