Here’s Why People Love Working with Me

I’m gregarious. I love talking to people, and over the course of my career, I’ve developed the skill to speak to just about anybody. I want to find out what makes you special, and celebrate it. Because you deserve to be celebrated.

I’m a networker and a door-holder. Thanks to opportunity, privilege and my own resilience I’ve been able to overcome hardship and find success and I recognize my responsibility to pave the way for the people who come after me. The world needs talented, smart, confident people to lead us into the next millennium, and there’s absolutely no reason to gate-keep access to resources when we already know that the future is female, it’s transgender and it’s Black, Brown and Indigenous.

So when people ask me who I can recommend to them, or when I’m building teams, my answer is not usually a list of known agents. It’s talented people who may have been looked over due to their lack of resources. Which is usually where you’ll find me in my free time, working with my communities on the things they feel are important.

“She is a natural leader who is equally comfortable with being a team player. No matter what role she plays, she delivers results with integrity, class and discernment.” Mildred Lewis, Principal at The Fox Lewis Project

I have integrity. I do what I say I’m going to do. I set a high standard for myself when it comes to living my values and I will respectfully challenge those around me to rise to the opportunity to do what’s right. When it comes to living values at work, it’s an essential part of my success. It’s not the easy way, it’s not necessarily going to show up on a quarterly report, but it will pay long-term dividends when it comes to brand loyalty, employee retention, institutional knowledge, marketing, messaging and culture. A small amount of work on the front end of a process to make sure that it really does what we say it will do can save millions in the long run.

I’m not afraid of hard work, but I’m also not afraid of smart work. I’ll admit, as a younger person I thought the only way to solve problems was to work harder. Eventually, I met enough problems I couldn’t solve with brute force and I had to learn new skills. I’m grateful I have and continue to have the opportunity to learn more and more about problem solving. Sometimes there’s nothing for it but to roll up my sleeves and dive right in. Other times, there’s nothing for it but to take a deep breath, do some research, call someone who knows more than me, take a walk around the block or hire someone trustworthy who will do the job more efficiently and with more skill than I can.

“Marina brings thoughtful energy and values-based ideas to every space. They catalyze change and back up their ideas with resources and tools to drive implementation. As the ED of a small non-profit, I couldn’t ask for a better, more helpful Board Member.” – Kate Bennedict, Executive Director of Financial Beginnings Oregon where I serve as a board member and volunteer educator.

I’m a communicator. My written and in-person communication skills are a combination of in-born talent and years of practice and education. I’m always working on improving my writing and speaking in order to be the best possible version of myself when it comes to communicating in ways that are heard, processed and used. I love public-speaking as well as being interviewed on radio, podcasts and television and look forward to going to conferences or making presentations. At the end of the day, the only way one person can truly connect to another is via communication and connecting with people is my favorite thing.

“Marina is a refreshing mix of disciplined and compassionate. She is organized, innovative and forward-thinking. She is a confident leader with an incredible work ethic who takes ideas and goals and turns them into actions with real world results. She is an absolute pleasure to work with and her consistent drive to challenge herself and sharpen her personal and professional skills is inspirational.” – Chris Lawn, Audio Visual Lead at CBRE Global Workplace Solutions

I build things. I like to leave things better than I found them. Usually that means that I build on to existing systems, make new ones or clean up old ones. Utility and efficiency are my constant companions. There’s nowhere I’ve worked that hasn’t been improved by my abuela-like constancy in terms of small improvements.

I’m just plain likable. I’m fun to talk to. I’m not shy about my opinions, but I’m not mean about them either. I remember people’s stories, I don’t tolerate bullies and I’m usually the first one to say what everybody’s thinking. I have a bullshit meter a mile long and no one is ever confused about where they stand with me or what I’m going to do next. Sometimes they’re a little surprised when I pull it off, but those are usually the people who haven’t known me that long.

Want to know more about my work experience? Check out my LinkedIn page!