Nexus Circular has much to be excited about. In June, we delivered our 100th truckload of circular liquid (i.e., liquid gold) which is used by our partners to produce sustainable virgin-quality plastics. To date, we have diverted over 6.3 million pounds of plastics from landfills. We are currently executing an aggressive growth and expansion strategy based on the commitments from our strategic partners to build and operate multiple new facilities in the US and overseas starting in 2024. And since the start of the year, our workforce has more than tripled in size. Nexus is growing!
Joining any company is exciting, especially as you meet colleagues and learn the ropes. But as you settle into a new position, how does working at Nexus differ from other companies? What’s it like working for a trailblazing advance recycler that is an industry leader in the burgeoning circular economy?
We turn to the experts—our employees—to answer these questions.
Jason Yates, maintenance supervisor, joined Nexus in January 2022. Though new to the company, he and Jeff Gold, company founder, CTO and COO, were already acquainted from a previous job. Having that prior experience was beneficial, but what influenced Jason to join Nexus was something more significant than himself. “I was secure in my last job and had a lot of potential for personal growth. The difference with Nexus was the potential to impact change on a global scale.”
Sarah Engelhardt, chemical engineer, learned about Nexus while working on a senior design project on plastic waste pyrolysis. She was also equally impressed, but for a different reason. “The name Nexus came up in some of my research. But I honestly didn’t know how far ahead in the game Nexus was until I started working here in March of 2021. It’s been really exciting!”
Lowell Slagle, CAD technician, came to Nexus with some familiarity with the company, having worked for a contractor that was employed by Nexus in 2016. Then a few months into the pandemic, Lowell was furloughed. Remembering Nexus, he decided to make a call. He joined as a contractor before moving to a full-time role in March 2021. “The culture is one of the main reasons I was drawn to Nexus. There’s an attitude, a perfect entrepreneurial attitude—we have a goal and are passionate about reaching that goal.”
Brandon Gilbert works remotely as a market researcher supporting the feedstock feasibility studies for future potential production sites. He stays connected with the marketing team, other coworkers and management through regular Teams meetings. Unlike the others, he knew little about Nexus when he applied in April 2021. “I didn’t know anything about molecular recycling, pyrolysis or the different kinds of plastics.” A year and a half later, that has changed. What intrigues him most about Nexus is something he noticed early on: management’s passion for the company’s mission. “When the people who work above you are excited and believe in what they do, that rubs off on you and makes you want to go all-in and get engaged.”
About the “entrepreneurial attitude” that Lowell mentions, this is something the others commented on as well. They describe Nexus’ management style as flat or horizontal instead of hierarchical or top-down, which makes people throughout the organization approachable and fosters collaboration. “It creates a more relaxed work environment that lets people come as they are, dress up or down and be willing to take chances and make mistakes,” explains Jason. “It makes you feel that you have ownership in the company.”
Helping instill that sense of camaraderie are the dogs that employees bring to work. On Wednesdays, Lowell brings Hank, a loveable mix he adopted from a shelter, while Sarah has Poe, another rescue, with her nearly every day. There is also Yancy, a neighborhood stray cat who “adopted” the company in its early days. “He is everyone’s pet,” Sarah says with a smile. “Yancy rules the roost and will take your seat,” Jason notes. “Having pets in the office elevates the mood. It gives you a short break from work, allowing you to rest your mind before jumping back to the task at hand.”
Ultimately, though, the company’s ethos is best summed up by Brandon. A few months ago, the marketing team was given a plant tour. Seeing the equipment and stacks of baled plastic firsthand was exciting for Brandon. However, what made the tour even more memorable was its guide. “Jeff Gold, the company founder, gave us an hour-long tour of the office and warehouse. He explained how used plastic is brought in, sorted and fed into the reactor. He described pyrolysis and how it converts plastic into circular liquid. I came away feeling empowered.”
So what is Nexus’ culture like? It is personable, focused, relaxed, passionate and supportive. “It’s an exhilarating time to join the company,” says Sarah. “We know where the goalposts are and see an opportunity to measurably impact the global plastic crisis,” Lowell adds, “and we want to get there every day.”
“I think this is a great opportunity for the people working here. Nexus is growing from a small enterprise to possibly a blue-chip company” suggests Jason. “It’s been energizing to watch the company grow,” proffers Brandon. “Seems like the sky’s the limit!”