“Authenticity and success can coexist. Aligning yourself with companies that foster a culture of acceptance can be a powerful support system,” Francisco Martinez-Garcia, chief inclusion officer at Moody’s, spoke to myGwork about his ongoing efforts in inspiring diversity and inclusion in the workplace. He described his career path to date, and how he utilises his extensive background and experiences to foster a culture of acceptance and equality.
“I am originally from Mexico, where I began my academic journey studying economics for my undergraduate degree,” shared Francisco. “I later moved to the US to pursue a graduate degree in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University.” His educational pursuits laid a solid foundation for his career in the field of human resources.
Francisco spent 17 years in a company that allowed him to work in diverse locations globally, which ultimately shaped his understanding of the importance of diversity and inclusion. “This exposure to different cultures and business environments was incredibly enriching and helped shape my worldview and approach to work,” he explained.
“I’m excited about the work we’re doing”
Nearly five years ago, Francisco transitioned to Moody’s, initially assuming the role of Head of Global Compensation. This new position allowed him to leverage his skills and experience in a different context. He later moved into a People Business Partner role, working closely with different parts of the business, which ultimately paved the way for his current position. Today, he serves as Moody’s chief inclusion officer, where he draws on his diverse experiences and insights to foster an inclusive culture within the organization. “It’s a role I find both challenging and rewarding, and I’m excited about the work we’re doing,” he said.
As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, Francisco reflected on the challenges he faced growing up in a Latin American society steeped in traditional values. “The fear of rejection, the internal struggle with tradition, and the courage to be true to oneself can be daunting.” However, to his surprise, he found solace and acceptance in the workplace.
“I found an unexpected sanctuary in the workplace”
“I found an unexpected sanctuary in the workplace,” he said. “I was fortunate to work for companies that not only welcomed but celebrated diversity. In an era when acceptance was a little rarer, work became my safe space, inspiring me to grow. Companies like Moody’s showed me that authenticity and success could coexist. Aligning yourself with companies that foster a culture of acceptance can be a powerful support system.”
Throughout his career, Francisco witnessed significant progress in attitudes towards diversity and inclusion. “I see a transition from a mentality of fostering DE&I simply because it’s the right thing to do, to viewing DE&I as a business imperative and a competitive advantage.”
At Moody’s, inclusivity is an integral part of the company’s culture. Francisco explained how they always aim to foster a culture of true inclusion and belonging, valuing everyone’s unique perspectives and contributions. At the core of their beliefs, diversity and equity are essential to build a workplace where inclusion thrives – and this very much includes the LGBTQ+ community.
“I felt my growth opportunities were limited”
Reflecting on his standout moments in his career, Francisco pointed to the decision to leave his previous company and join Moody’s as a defining moment. “It was a risk, I had nothing but good experiences with my previous company, but I felt my growth opportunities were limited,” he recalled. The move to Moody’s provided Francisco with new avenues for personal and professional development.
Francisco’s inspiring journey from a small traditional town to becoming the chief inclusion officer at Moody’s showcases his commitment to championing a world of true, authentic equality. His experiences and insights inspire others to celebrate diversity and pave the way for a more inclusive future.
“In my career and personal life, I have seen tremendous progress on LGBTQ+ rights and equality, however the reality is that the experience is still very disparate,” he explained. “Not all members of the community and not all countries and regions have the same access to the rights and freedoms that we have been gaining in some cases. I would like to see progress for other members of the LGBTQ+ community, especially in some regions where being LGBTQ+ is still challenging.”