Level Five Leader Behind Verity’s Success
Chad Bryden’s been building homes on Vancouver Island since 2004, and certifying them BUILT GREEN® since 2006. That makes him one of the longest supporters of these third-party certification programs, and, while you likely won’t hear him say it, his Verity Construction has produced more BUILT GREEN® single family certified homes than any other builder in British Columbia: 1,420, to date!
Many of us associate leadership with a certain visibility and popularity, which provide recognition, and sometimes a larger-than-life status. However, Jim Collins and team researched companies that went from good to great, revealing that successful leaders can have quite opposing characteristics. This informed his book, Going from Good to Great and helped Collins develop his levels of leadership.
According to Collins, level five leaders are humble—even shy—with indominable will, able to transform an organization, without portraying themselves as wizards with magic wands. They prefer talking about the company and the contribution of others, rarely about their own role or achievements—their ambition is focused on the cause, rather than themselves.
Level five leadership characterizes Chad Bryden, Founder and President of Verity Construction, to a tee. Operating out of Victoria, today Verity provides construction management and general contracting services for residential, commercial, and industrial projects, with a team of 260. But back in 2004, it was a team of six, which Bryden would quietly build up.
Unlike the traditional method of first growth strategies, then looking for the right people to deliver, Verity takes a different route: getting the right team, then deciding on destination. And Bryden brought on the right people, as evidenced by his long-standing, loyal team, who are as committed to Verity and Chad, as he is to them and the company, which has earned a reputation for delivering quality construction with trusted service.
Martina Morgestern, Senior Project Manager of Verity’s residential construction division, speaks to the many times Bryden has stepped in—hammering the nails himself—to support his team and deliver to the client on time; the culture he’s created is based in humility and integrity. Morgenstern goes on to share that her job at Verity is the best she’s ever had, which is saying a lot, given she’s worked for many years in Canada, as well as Germany. She says, “I’m very committed: to Chad, the team, and to Verity.”
The team’s sustainability focus was activated in 2006, when Verity became a member of Built Green Canada. They committed to learning better ways of building—choosing sustainability to propel themselves forward. From there, Bryden worked with their trades and suppliers, for a united way forward.
17 years later, Bryden continues to see the benefits. He says, with BUILT GREEN® certification, the customer knows that the home is more than just building code compliant—it’s sustainably built, and that’s about more than energy. Their homebuyers appreciate those green features—including the resulting financial benefits of a more efficient home.
Built Green’s third-party certification programs verify green features and performance, addressing eight areas of green building: energy & envelope; materials & methods; indoor air quality; ventilation; waste management; water conservation; occupant wellness; and business practices. Built Green is about the house as a system and knows that a holistically built home is a healthier home: for the homebuyer and the environment. The organization offers levels for incremental achievement, based in practical, affordable solutions to increasing performance requirements.
Jenifer Christenson, CEO at Built Green Canada, says, “Chad and his team have brought a remarkable number of greener, healthier homes to Vancouver Island—both through their own builds and by leading through example. They’ve shown others that certification is achievable and valued. Given the number of homes they’ve certified, alongside a growing number of homebuyers’ prioritizing a sustainably, better built home, they’ve no doubt increased expectations amongst homebuyers and builders alike.”
It’s right there in the name: “verity” is about something being true or real. Verity Construction’s principled approach delivers, both within the team and through their product—a third-party certified build that goes beyond building code compliance, by a team beyond status quo.