For Marie Robert, being in a diverse and inclusive community has always been a part of life. As a young girl, Robert grew up in San Juan, Puerto Rico and was introduced to many cultures.
“An aspect that helped shape my diverse background is that Puerto Rico is very much made up of different cultures,” Robert said. “The contributions of the Spanish, Indian and Africans have been instrumental in shaping Puerto Rico’s rich culture and one can see the influence of this diversity in Puerto Rico’s food, music, language, art, etc.”
Today, Robert is an executive for Pratt & Whitney. Part of her job is handling mergers and acquisitions in other countries. Robert credits her diverse upbringing, which included traveling to countries in Europe, Asia and South America, and appreciation for other cultures with her success in this part of her job.
“I do a lot of business internationally for Raytheon Technologies, and I think it's great that I'm able to relate to different cultures. Getting to know all these people, for me, it's very important,” Robert said.
Robert’s ability to understand other cultures and develop a rapport with people from other countries is pinnacle to our operations as a global business.
“The world is a global economy, and our products are global as well so we have to be able to relate to people from all over the world,” Robert said.
“Our customer base is global so the more we're able to showcase a diverse workforce with a rich cultural background, I think that's what's going to grow Raytheon Technologies as a company.”
Robert’s understanding of people’s backgrounds also helps drive Raytheon Technologies’ inclusive work culture. When people of different backgrounds share their thoughts and perspectives openly, innovation happens. It’s diversity of thought that leads to the next great ideas.
“Being Puerto Rican influences how I come to work every day. I have an appreciation for every type of culture. When I'm meeting with people and they're from different cultures, I really take the time to understand who they are and where they come from. I try to learn from their background because I think that someone's background is really quite important,” Robert said.
One of the best ways to increase diversity in the workplace is through representation. When others see aspects of themselves reflected in leadership, they’re more willing to strive to be a part of an organization. Robert uses her prominent position to encourage people of different backgrounds to take up or advance their careers at Raytheon Technologies.
“If I'm in a meeting and I see that certain people are not included in this meeting, I feel empowered to make sure that all our representation is here. I'm the role model. I want them to look at me and say, ‘I can be you,'” Robert said.