Our Culture 5 min Read

How One ERG Leader Feels Valued at GDIT

August 18th, 2021

How One ERG Leader Feels Valued at GDIT

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From U.S. Marine to supporting government customers

After four and a half years in the U.S. Marine Corps, including a tour in Afghanistan, Gabby Ventura was looking for her next step in either military or civilian life. She applied to GDIT and once hired, she hasn’t looked back.

“GDIT has a great veteran community, so I found a lot of people that could walk me through the process of transitioning and also take me under their wing, show me the ropes, and point me into the right resources to make sure that my GDIT experience was a great one,” she shares.

Now with GDIT for 13 years, Gabby supports a government customer as an Operations Analyst.

If you look around GDIT, at all levels of leadership, you’ll see diversity and that makes you feel that you can achieve things. And it helps make sure that you can dream for yourself and in dreaming, it allows you to bring in your whole self into work and achieve your goals.

Gabby Ventura

Operations Analyst, GDIT

OUR CULTURE

Learn more about our commitment to Diversity and Inclusion.

Sharing the diversity of the Latinx experience

When she thinks of company culture, inclusivity stands out as one of the most important ways an organization can support its people. She’s seen GDIT take steps toward fostering a more inclusive culture over the years and credits the Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) with creating a safe space for all employees.

“All the ERG groups we have now, they’re so active and they’re trying to engage everyone at all levels, I think that speaks very highly of GDIT and the type of culture they are creating for everyone.”

Gabby is the co-lead for the Hispano Latinx Association ERG, affectionately known as HOLA. “We’ve been very active the last few years to try to get more inclusiveness in GDIT within the Latinx community,” she says. “We work with recruiting to make sure we see more diversity at all levels and overall, it’s a great community to share ideas and experiences about being Latinx at GDIT.”

How are they sharing the Latinx experience? Through events and activities that give their ERG members a voice. A large program out of Mexico has a local chapter for HOLA. They hosted an event to talk about Mexico and their love for the country. It was a fun way to virtually tour Mexico while also sharing the diversity of the Latinx experience.

Gabby sees these activities as ways to create connections around similar passions. “It creates a safe for conversations and somewhere where you can bring your whole self. It creates a space to have tough conversations, to ask for advice from people that may have also had your same experiences.”

Discovering ways to own her career

Inclusion isn’t just about ERGs though. It’s also about how you’re valued and respected in your role. Gabby has felt valued and engaged through stretch assignments that allow her teams to really see her potential.

“Recently we won a major contract and we had to staff more than 100 positions. This was really a stretch assignment because of the short transition timeline,” she says about the project. “I remember struggling a little bit at the beginning because every day, every hour, you’re making decisions. And I was feeling a little bit overwhelmed.”

Gabby’s leader was there for her. He gave her the support she needed and encouraged her to make those important decisions and learn from anything that didn’t work out as planned.

“That was key in really moving forward with the project and knowing that as long as we got 90 percent correct during the transition, we were on the right path. Just knowing that he believed in my efforts and my abilities, I think that was key for me.”

From co-leading an ERG to staffing impactful projects, Gabby has the opportunity to own her career in meaningful ways.

“If you look around GDIT, at all levels of leadership, you’ll see diversity and that makes you feel that you can achieve things. And it helps make sure that you can dream for yourself and in dreaming, it allows you to bring in your whole self into work and achieve your goals.”