It is a spooktacular month— but we aren’t just looking forward to Halloween here at Citadel, we are also celebrating ESOPtober! That is right, October is ESOP month, and as an employee-owned environmental health, safety, and sustainability firm– ESOPtober is a great time for us to reflect on what it means to be an ESOP company.
As we continue to grow and expand, it is important that we remain true to our values, and that comes with reflecting on them often as a company and creating a company culture that supports those values. When our founder and CEO, Loren Witkin, reflected on his vision for Citadel he saw a company that shared the wealth the company created with the individuals that made it. As part of his vision to bring all employees into ownership roles, Loren drove the formation of the firm’s ESOP in 2003.
Citadel EHS prides itself in being an employee-owned and values-based business. At Citadel, we strive to have a positive social and environmental impact not only through the work we do for clients, but also in how we treat our employees and how we conduct our business. Our company values directly influence our decision to be an ESOP. Being an ESOP has allowed Citadel EHS to align more fully with our company values: Integrity, Trust, Excellence, Alignment, Empowerment, and Environmental Responsibility. By being 100% employee owned, our employees are 100% invested in the success of our clients, our stakeholders, our company, our communities, and our environment. Each employee owner takes ownership of their part in supporting each other towards the mutual benefit of all.
We don’t mean to brag and say our employees work harder, but statistics show that ESOP ownership improves business performance and productivity by 4-5% in the year ESOP is adopted, and 25% over a 10 year period. Not only that, ESOP companies see an average yearly return on assets of over 2.7% after ESOP adaptation. It goes without saying that what is good for the company is good for the employees—or should we say Employee Owners. Employees at ESOP companies make 5-12% more in wages and have retirement accounts that are 2.5x greater than non-ESOP employees. Being an ESOP, Citadel EHS nurtures a culture that empowers our employees, because they are integral to our success.
With an empowered team comes happy clients, with projects that are is centered upon the design and development of innovative solutions that respond to our clients’ specific needs in a cost-effective manner. We perceive ourselves as an extension of our client’s team and function with the best interests of the client in mind. By managing each project with a focus on three primary objectives – economic efficiency, technical excellence, and sustainable approach – we can provide superior service that efficiently and effectively meets the needs of our clients. Good customer service doesn’t just happen; it requires a defined set of universally accepted standards and expectations, and a commitment to those standards. Citadel’s Stakeholder Standard of Care defines and outlines our standards and expectations which shall be followed by all Employees when dealing with any Citadel Stakeholder. As a Citadel Employee, our actions are guided by Citadel’s Core Values and support The Citadel Advantage at all times.