Vega Factor was founded in 2015. Dedicated to applying the principles outlined in Primed to Perform, Vega has grown to a team of 20 culture agents and engineers.
Our founding team is comprised of people who have a passion for transforming human potential at scale and solving cutting-edge business challenges. Many of our founding team members are former McKinsey consultants with experience serving Fortune 500 companies, startups, school systems, universities, nonprofits and foundations. Others have led retail organizations, built e-commerce platforms from scratch, and served as general managers with P&L ownership.
Our personal histories are quirky and varied—from the team member who was selected as a Disney princess and won a national web-design contest, to the member who led a software startup from birth to 100 people as CTO. Ultimately: we are all culture nerds. And proud of it.
Lindsay is the co-founder of Vega Factor and co-author of bestselling book, Primed to Perform: How to Build the Highest Performing Cultures Through the Science of Total Motivation. Previously, Lindsay led projects at McKinsey & Company, working with large fortune 500 companies, nonprofits, universities and school systems. She received her B.A. from Princeton and an MBA from Harvard. In her spare time she loves investigating and sharing great stories.
Neel is the co-founder of Vega Factor and co-author of bestselling book, Primed to Perform: How to Build the Highest Performing Cultures Through the Science of Total Motivation. Previously, Neel was a Partner at McKinsey & Company, CTO and founding member of an award-winning tech startup, and employee of several mega-institutions. He studied engineering at MIT and received his MBA from Wharton. In his spare time, he’s an avid yet mediocre woodworker and photographer.
Erin is a culture agent based in Boston. She has experience in the retail space in management, operations, purchasing, and product development roles. Erin received her Bachelor’s Degree from the Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester and was nominated and awarded the revered Performer’s Certificate. She has performed on the stages of five countries, Carnegie Hall, and was a recipient of Yale’s Norfolk fellowship.
Yahor is a service platform agent based in New York. He moved to the US from Belarus looking for exciting opportunities and found one in Vega Factor. He received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Software Engineering from Belarusian State University of Informatics and Radioelectronics. In his spare time, he tests new software development and testing tools and reads about economics and political philosophy.
Henry is an engineer who grew up in a machine shop between the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges. His professional satisfaction comes from the definition, design, development and deployment of enterprise technological solutions, which he leads here at Vega Factor (he is also partial to alliteration). He started his career at Bell Laboratories and went on to engineering leadership at a variety of software ventures in NYC. He received his BS and MS in Electrical Engineering from NYU-Poly in Brooklyn. A lifelong resident of the same borough, he teaches cool to the hipsters arriving daily.
Laura is a UI/UX agent based in NYC. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic & Web Design from The University of Tampa and has since designed beautiful user interfaces for notable companies like NIKE and Cleveland Clinic. She feels complete when she can combine her design experience with her gradually growing coding skills, especially if you hand her a cappuccino. Her main focus lies on front-end design and development and everything creative. When she isn't prettifying pixels, she dedicates her time to becoming a karaoke star.
Artie is a platform agent living in New York City. He has 15 years of experience as a software engineer, both in the capacity of a consultant, and at startups. He most recently worked at Tapad, where he helped to build the Device Graph Access suite of products. Artie is incredibly excited to work on a product that can improve the lives of countless people. Along with being a culture nerd, Artie is a lover of all things creative and is an aspiring photographer, writer, and yogi.
Andrew leads our product management efforts. He studied engineering at The University of Texas at Austin, received his MBA from Rice, and has bounced, gleefully, from Houston to San Francisco and now, New York City. He's a mentor and co-founder with industry experience ranging from refineries to start-ups & large tech companies. In his spare time, he values unplanned time with friends, is up for any sport, and searchesfor new perspectives from which to appreciate life.
Deborah is a culture agent based in Boston. She has traveled and worked in over 40 countries, 38 states, and called New York and Paris home for over a decade working for fashion designer Marc Jacobs. Her experience ranges from directing global retail chains and launching websites, to digital strategy, public relations, and communications leadership. Deborah has a Bachelor's Degree from GWU and is a 500-hour certified yoga instructor.
Viveca Gruen Befekadu
Viveca is a culture agent based in her beloved New York City. A former consultant, turned internal strategist, turned consultant again, Viveca has worked with organizations ranging from a public library, a professional sports league, a power plant in Rwanda and most of what’s in between. When she’s not playing in a pile of data, she’s often playing squash. Viveca received a Bachelor’s Degree from Brown University and an MBA from NYU.
John is a platform agent based in New York. He received both a B.A. and B.E. in Electrical Engineering from Dartmouth College. He comes to Vega Factor looking to build rich and dynamic web interfaces and deliver a first class user experience. Outside the office, you can find him playing piano in his apartment or moving heavy objects at a CrossFit gym.
Bayarmunkh Davaadorj, or Chka for short, is a software engineer based in New York. He attended Mongolian University of Science and Technology, where he studied computer science and electrical engineering. He has worked in various industries including advertising, sales, and media. Chka enjoys watching sports or playing basketball or billiard outside of the office.
Rich is a culture agent based in New York. He has deep expertise partnering with organizations to enhance and transform their cultures. He has also been an executive coach, working with high performing leaders and leadership teams. He is passionate about helping organizations, teams, and individuals to achieve higher levels of sustained performance. He received his B.S. in Operations Research and Industrial Engineering from Cornell University. Outside of work, he loves to play tennis, exercise, read, and explore walkable cities and towns.
Vitri is our Chief Fire-Watcher—less our primary pyromaniac, more our leader who designs Vega Factor’s internal culture and manages our risk and finances. Most recently, she led teams at McKinsey & Company on both internal and external enterprise strategy missions for banking and investor clients. Of Indian and Filipino descent, the Buffalo-native received her MBA from NYU Stern and her BA in Economics and Business Administration from Boston University. You can find our resident thrill-seeker jumping out of planes, obsessing over fast cars, and camped out anywhere food is being discussed, prepared or eaten.
Will is a product manager based in New York, translating user needs into product experiences that solve complex, real-world problems. Born and raised in Boston, he attended Harvard University, where he studied Psychology and Computer Science and founded the Harvard Rap Collective. Will blended his passion for psych and technology prior to Vega, doing design projects in college and developing a customer insights data framework at a healthtech startup. In his spare time, Will enjoys performing hip hop, rock climbing, and geeking out over the latest Nintendo craze.
Rachael is the Firm’s Quartermaster. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations with a focus in Peace and Conflict studies from Christopher Newport University, and her Master’s Degree in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University. Her experience ranges from working in law and media to human rights organizations in Kenya to negotiating peace treaties in the Middle East and the Basque region. She migrated to NYC from her hometown of Richmond, VA, and enjoys finding the best brunch spots in town, traveling the globe and catching up on new movies and workout classes.
Matt is a culture agent based in New York. He has worked in various countries and sectors, including law, finance and compliance, and ran his own digital media startup for a number of years. Matt is using all of this context to both help define our product set and implement it with clients. Outside of the office Matt makes it a priority to see what the world has to offer. He co-manages the lives of two of the world’s cutest children with intrepid journalist Samantha Shapiro, and is Yokozuno of Brooklyn Sumo Fightclub.
Simon is a culture agent based in New York. He is an expert in leadership and capability-building, who understands what it really takes to unlock innovation, culture and collaboration in large organizations. Simon previously worked as a Director at the innovation agency “?What If!,” and was a founder of his own culture change consultancy firm, specializing in human performance. Simon is an Englishman living in Brooklyn with his wife and son. He likes to eat great food, have adventures and is an avid Tottenham soccer fam. Simon once worked as a private detective and has hitch-hiked across the U.S.
Kelly is a QA (Quality Assurance) engineer based in New York. She received a Bachelor of Science from City College of New York with a major in computer science. When Kelly is not busy ensuring the proper functionality of our technology, she loves taking long walks to discover new things around the city, catching a game of her favorite baseball team (The Mets) and hanging out with her cats: Truly, Monte and Shea.
Joe is a software engineer based in New York. He graduated from the College of William & Mary with a B.S. in Physics, but prefers to do his problem solving on the computer. He loves to design and build apps that make other people’s lives more efficient and more pleasant. Away from work, Joe can be found in conversation with his friends, probably over a drink and a meal. Fun fact: Joe is a wizard with Legos' and can build virtually anything, from Batman to pumpkins.
Forrest leads our movement efforts from New York City. His portfolio of work includes serving as the CSO for start-ups in the tech and professional sports industries to supporting Fortune 50 finance firms. Forrest lives with his wife Sarah and two dogs, Scout and Tuckerman. When not talking story, he’s likely enjoying the outdoors (and acting feral) with a pair of skis, tent, bike, or surfboard.
Bud is a culture agent based in New York. Over the course of his career, at McKinsey & Company, Bridgewater Associates, Capital One, Amazon, and a culture consultancy he helped found, he has seen how culture can make or break organizations. Bud holds degrees from Penn and Harvard Business School. He’s happiest when helping people and organizations reach their potential, hanging with his wife and kids, seeing live bands, and bird watching.