Community North America
October 14, 2021 | 8 min read

“As the team leader, I try to get everyone involved to make an impact” – The Volunteer Team Spirit of Kim Johnson


ICL’s Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) week is just one of many ways that we strive to create meaningful employment through a sense of community and unrelenting team spirit. A sustainable future for our planet can only be realized when communities and individuals take action and work together to generate a real-world impact.. We are incredibly proud that our employees embody this vision in their own unique ways, and we enjoy to share their stories of personal and communal success. At ICL, an individual’s success is a victory for the entire team, and the success of a team translates into the community’s prosperity. Through these series of successes, our teams can embed themselves within communities to create lasting and meaningful volunteer initiatives that are mutually beneficial. We thrive when our communities do. 

“When I talk about what is being done at Tarrytown, I always speak in terms of ‘we’ because together we are stronger.” Says Kim Johnson – ICL employee of 18 years and volunteer.. Kim has, made her way through several positions, from Procurement, to Administrative Assistant, to her current Research and Development position.

Kim enjoys interacting with people and the challenge that comes with learning and doing new things. “I love being part of a group and being able to support them all,” she says. Team spirit is the joy of working with others who are attuned to you and a joint project and are all working towards the same common goal. It is the feeling when coordination and productive cooperation meet and everyone is able to share the satisfaction of a job well done. The sense of purpose and support when an entire team is working together and is doing their fair share is unmatched. It is truly a special feeling when all the pieces come together to form the bigger picture, and you and your colleagues can step back and enjoy the fruits of your labor. 

ICL does its utmost to provide employees with the opportunities to feel this unique sense of team spirit and the well-being accompanying it. Combining new and exciting challenges and team support for consistent productivity is among the best ways to create meaningful employment – and a purpose-driven engagement with the surrounding community.

Our goal is to provide employees with meaningful opportunities to feel self-fulfilled and engaged, and Kim’s story is a moving example of that. Kim began volunteering during the last global ESG week. “I have always wanted to do volunteer work, but I have an autistic son, and it is challenging to be able to get the free time to do so. When I am not at work, I am with my son, and I am fortunate enough to have a great support system that stays with him while I get errands done, but it only allows me so much time to get things done. So ICL’s volunteer week has allowed me to pursue something I have always wanted to do without sacrificing time with my son.”  

People like Kim are highly motivated by interactions with individuals who need support, regardless of whether it is team members, family, or the community at large. For them, the precious moment that makes everything worth it is seeing how those in need react to the efforts put forth by the team. That is why Kim’s most memorable recent volunteer opportunity was at the local A-Home: “We had cleaned up a yard at a house that served as a home for the disabled. Their yard hadn’t been cleaned up in some time and had become very overgrown. As we began cutting away at shrubs and weeds, we discovered a patio underneath with nice stonework. It got us very motivated to uncover whatever else may be hidden underneath the overgrowth. The woman who ran the program was so thankful to us and so appreciative. I think seeing the people you help and do something for is the most rewarding.”

You may be interested in:

Volunteering has helped me realize how fortunate I am” – Stacy Broner’s Volunteer Story
“Volunteering is a Part of Me” – the Story of Aviva Bargal
“I would go back any time” – Salome Gerhardus On Volunteering in a Disaster Area

We find it moving that Kim and her team were motivated to do more for the residents of the home. “I don’t know if it is so much my impact as a volunteer, but the impact of the team of volunteers here at Tarrytown when we are doing this,” says Kim. “As the team leader, I try to get everyone involved to make an impact.” 

Kim believes that “things always work out the way they were meant to,” and we think that this optimism – so pleasant to ICL – is that of a person firmly rooted in a supportive community.

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