Despite being born in 1980 and joining IBM in 2004, my linkage to IBM started around the early 70s. I'm a second generation IBMer, and very proud of that. When I was little, I was certainly not aware that the family gatherings in IBM and the promotional t-shirts were going to stay in my life until today, but now I really hope it can stay in my family tree for more generations ahead.
I joined IBM as part of the first trainee program for the former Business Consulting Services. At that time, I had the opportunity to learn about every IBM division and its business, our history and challenges ahead. My team was composed of 30 high potential new hires, selected among around 2.800 candidates. This team was very diverse in itself, having people of very different cities and styles. At this point, we had some presentations about the power of diversity, and we were starting to understand the concept and its benefits.
Five years later, I had one of my greatest moments in the corporation. After applying for the Corporate Service Corps (CSC), I was accepted as a member. The CSC exposes high performance IBM employees to the 21st century context for doing business — emerging markets, global teaming, diverse cultures, working outside the traditional office, and increased societal expectations for more responsible and sustainable business practices. Wow! Six months later, I saw myself working in China with a team composed of 10 members from 8 different countries, with different cultures and ways of working. We also had the need to interact with other IBM sites around the world, and that made the experience even more interesting and rewarding.
I couldn't be prouder of my company. I could see that in every part of the world, we have very committed, skilled people. I was exposed to a very extreme diversity experience, having to meet, work and have fun together, as a team, with people that have lived all their life in a different way than me, that had different opinions and ideas.
That was just fascinating! We could live all the good things the diversity presentation showed me and my trainee team five years earlier! We formed a complete team, with experts in a lot of areas, everyone helping and looking after each other in work and life. From Brazil to Pakistan, passing through Sweden, we formed great friendship and work links, close and strong.
We are just a small example of what IBM is capable of. We are just a huge example on how diversity works and its benefits - proving that those three big, capital letters mean that International team can be very helpful to the Business, operating as high performing Machines. If I could do it, and if my team could do it, join us and start making the difference today in your IBM site. Pretty soon it can spread in distances like the one from Brazil to China!