Innovative Teams Built on a Diverse Mix of Talent

Team lead, LaNitra John, who manages graphical content for Caterpillar app says creating the best team requires a range of people from diverse backgrounds and experiences. The success they drive for the enterprise is what we call the Power of Everyone. 

LaNitra John loves solving problems and organizing information, and these are skills that serve her well in her role as a Parts Illustrations Lead on the Technical Information Solutions team. This group is responsible for creating graphical content for the CAT® Technician App, used worldwide as a tool to diagnose, repair and maintain Caterpillar products.

Though LaNitra now leads a team of 13 illustrators located in Peoria, Illinois, and Chennai, India, she struggled with learning disabilities when she was younger. Schoolwork didn't always come naturally to her, but determination did. She always knew that if she wanted to achieve a goal, she might have to work a little bit harder - and smarter - than the next person.

LaNitra's team is diverse; members are of different ethnicities, genders, backgrounds and ages. LaNitra uses her natural skills of determination and organization to help the team leverage their differences for creative thinking and overcome obstacles - whether it be the challenge of working together across different time zones, or the issues that come with taking massive engineering models and re-creating them at a much smaller scale to be loaded to the app.

Following college, LaNitra worked on a Caterpillar engine paint line in Mossville, Illinois. At that time, she was one of few females in her work group, and most of her teammates were much farther along in their careers than she was.

"I had to find ways to relate to them, to build trust" she said, which is something she has carried with her always. "Whenever I meet someone new, I try to find something that we can relate on. You need to appreciate the differences but find the similarities."

LaNitra looks for ways to drive these opportunities on her team. She has paired experienced professionals who have deep institutional knowledge with newer employees known for innovation. Together, it's a winning combination and they can drive a solution through to implementation. This kind of teamwork requires deliberate actions.

"I've learned you must work on inclusion and diversity and purposefully strive to have it within a group," she said. "People seem to gravitate toward those who are similar to them. You must push yourself to step outside and be comfortable with working with people who are different than you are. When you do that, there’s no limit to what you can accomplish.”

A commitment to inclusion and diversity is a commitment to the work it takes to keep both values front and center at Caterpillar. If you’re ready to join the team that encourages the growth of your unique talents, search and apply today.