DTE Energy’s Employee Resource Group, SOMOS, (meaning “we are”), is proud of its contributions at work and in the community!
We are in the middle of National Hispanic Heritage Month, which recognizes the heritage, culture, and contributions of Hispanic and Latinx Americans and runs Sept. 15-Oct. 15. We highlight our fellow Hispanic colleagues who are leading the way at DTE: Rosana Laurain, manager, Customer Marketing, Gas Sales & Marketing, Luis Salas, manager, Customer Strategy, and Susan (Tracy) DiSanto, manager, Workforce Planning ＆ Analytics, HR Workforce Planning & Development.
“Since the pandemic started, we have been just checking in with our coworkers and our SOMOS familia and amigos, staying engaged in different ways, like by virtual exercise events. Our executive sponsor, Camilo Serna, has been active and engaged with us, too.”
Being engaged has paid off for SOMOS because Rosana’s team won an internal award for a work-related soccer event last year that included bringing in the national Mexican soccer team, translators, and community partners to provide resources to the community.
“It was a huge win for us all,” Rosana said.
Tracy and her team collaborated and overcame some hurdles that her team faced when transitioning summer internship programs to virtual jobs.
“We had to pivot on a dime to change the student program and within two months we had worked with all of our student programs are almost 100 percent virtual,” Tracy said.
“Many other companies canceled their intern programs, but we were determined to make ours work because we know how important real work experience is for young people,” Tracy said. “We understood what kinds of things were challenging, and we understood what the leaders needed.”
For Luis, maintaining virtual camaraderie with his team while improving metrics, is proving to work well.
“My team was pretty social in the office already, a lot of them knew each other for years, so with the transition, I was a little worried about that connectivity translating virtually but between one-on-ones, huddles, a chat platform we use, and always having our cameras on, I feel closer to the team,” said Luis.
He added that he wanted to ensure that his team was as productive remotely as when they were in the office.
“I think that was a concern for everyone,” Luis said, adding that his team exceeded his expectations. “We are actually showing better results now than when we were face to face. Staying connected with your team really has its benefits – and our company and our customers are benefiting.”
Want to learn more about how DTE is working to create a more diverse and inclusive workplace? Read more about our efforts here.