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Celanese Speaks

Seventy-Five Years of People Making the Difference 

Narrows, Virginia, is a small town located in southwest Virginia in Giles County with a population of approximately 2,000 people. The New River flows through this town crossing the Appalachian Mountains.

Narrows is part of the Blacksburg-Christiansburg-Radford area which is one of the fastest growing regions in the U.S. The region has been ranked on multiple occasions within the top five areas to raise children considering education, safety and economic development.

The color of the seasons could not be more vibrant around this area. From the bright greens in the Spring, through the orange and red leaves in Autumn, to the white scenery that brings the snow fall during the Winter.

A river, mountains and several hiking trails are also neighboring scenery to the world largest…

Celanese International Impact Program, Celanese Speaks

CIIP Going Local 

As a member of the Celanese Foundation Dallas Site Committee (DSC), I have been involved in numerous discussions regarding how we can embrace, grow and fulfill our core value of “Improving the World.”  These discussions have taken place in DSC meetings, over lunch with colleagues and in the hallways of LCB and DBS.

One of the exciting ideas to come out of these discussions involves taking “Local” the concept of the Celanese International Impact Program (CIIP) where we would take the knowledge and skills that we have as Celanese professionals and apply those to local NGOs for their benefit.  Of course, we always have to have an acronym for something here at Celanese, so how about this: CLIP or Celanese Local Impact Program.

I am proud to say that we are already seeing this “CLIP” concept in action. During the week beginning September 29, a team of…

Celanese Life, Celanese Speaks

Stepping out from behind the corporate curtain 

I’m in my early 20s and slowly learning the DOs and DON’Ts of daily corporate life.

  • DO show up to work earlier rather than later.
  • DON’T stay in your cubicle all day long.
  • DO ask others if they need help on projects they are working on.
  • DON’T be afraid to ask for help.

As I am trying to learn as much as possible, I have found myself caught in a bit of a trap. I’m watching each step I take so carefully, with a fixed gaze on my feet, I have forgotten to look up and look in the mirror. I sometimes work to reflect this corporate image I have in my mind, rather than the…

Celanese Speaks

What my drive to work taught me about the Internet of tomorrow 

It is not uncommon for my conversations with Gen Xers and Baby Boomers to touch on the idea that technology might hamper our ability to connect with others.

I guess it is because I work in enterprise Information Technology (IT). Conversations tend to shift toward technology and a lot of people only see the consumer side of the industry – a side dominated by social media. It’s probably natural to wonder why everyone seems to be focused on a smartphone instead of physically interacting with the world around them. It’s like talking about the weather –a topic none of us will really disagree on.

“Yes, it is hot outside.” “Yes, two kids might stand next to each other and communicate via text message instead of actually talking.”…

Celanese Speaks

Celanese Collaborates with Industry for Greater Transparency 

Our industry is changing rapidly.  Not surprisingly, we’re being shaped by significant social, environmental and economic forces.  Our goal is to be at the forefront of these innovative and transformative changes that will result in more transparency and openness within our industry and with the public.

Working with the American Chemistry Council (ACC), Celanese and others have undertaken an ambitious project to partner with and educate stakeholders with a direct interest in the safe use of chemical ingredients. Together we have built ties with direct customers, competitors, manufacturers, retailers and consumers. We want to help them make…

Celanese Life, Celanese Speaks

Learning the value of Values: An intern’s perspective 

When we started working on the Celanese Values Challenge, a two-week competition we hosted at our company headquarters in Dallas, we set out with a charge: to educate Celanese employees about our new values so they could internalize and connect with them. We expected employees to learn about our values by participating in the challenge; however, in the end, we realized how much we had internalized those values ourselves.

Our managers demonstrated to us how much they valued Employee Growth, one of Celanese’s six values, by giving us the responsibility of not only coming up with the idea of a competition from scratch, but also finding creative solutions to implement every step of the way no matter what roadblocks we faced. When push came to shove, we learned…

Celanese Speaks, Employee Growth

How Curiosity and Collaboration Helped my Growth and Development 

Curiosity is a good thing, especially when it comes to personal growth and your career! Last year I asked colleagues and customers to consider providing me feedback for my year-end review. It was a bold move, but I was interested in what they would say and how I could improve. You see, my role is unique on the global communications team. I am responsible for the Celanese intranet and manage the editorial calendar. On a daily basis, I work together with team members in Budapest, Frankfurt and Shanghai to share company news. Based on their feedback, I was challenged to consider working on some non-Dallas projects and learn from my colleagues in other regions. So, I prepared a summary to share with my boss.
I have always had a healthy fear of performance reviews, but with our new approach to employee performance, I was optimistic that this year’s discussion would ease my discomfort. During my review…

Celanese Speaks

Building the communication skills you need 

Do you aspire to lead a team, an organization, a corporation? Have you thought about the communication skills you will need?

Leaders who move organizations in powerful directions connect with people and build a shared vision of the future. Being a strong communicator can significantly enhance your chances of success. Whether it’s one-on-one, with your leadership team, business or global enterprise, people need to believe in you and your message before they’ll follow you. Good communications can help. At the same time, by developing communication skills, you are building a career asset that will set you apart.

A rare number of people are born…

Celanese Speaks

We’re All Part Of The Celanese Brand 

I recently read an article “Your CEO Is Part of Your Brand, Whether You Like It or Not”. The article described how a CEO’s actions or comments can have an impact on a brand’s perception.

The article made me think:  the CEO is the most visible reflection of a company’s brand, but they are not the only one who impacts a brand.  We all reflect Celanese; whether it is with customers, suppliers, our communities and with each other.

Wait, don’t only customer-facing employees represent our brand?  The reality is in…

Celanese Speaks, Employee Growth

Do You Do Windows? 

Shortly after Mark Rohr joined Celanese we began to discuss our culture. We did surveys, sensing groups and had several global teams work on our vision, mission and values. Ultimately we had consensus and established an “enhanced” set of organizational values. As you walk through the offices and plant sites, you can see these colorful posters hanging on the walls. Our “Employee Growth” is defined as “Make Celanese a rewarding place to work with growth opportunities that allow employees to reach their fullest potential.” But what does that really mean anyway?

From my experience (as an employee and supervisor), here are the fundamental elements that lead to highly-effective employee growth…

Celanese Speaks, Employee Growth

How Can We Add Value and Grow with the Company? 

I remember the exact moment I knew that to be successful, I had to grow faster than my company and the industry I was working in.  I had just taken the top human resources (HR) job for one of the fastest-growing business units in a global technology solutions company. I was joining HR after a career in research and development so my learning curve was steep.

I had to set myself on a growth path to learn and lead  . . . ahead of the business.  And, this business was destined to grow from $1 billion in revenue to $9 billion in revenue over four years – all organically.  So, needless to say, I had to get busy.  In the end we had great success, and I emerged four years later a better leader. How did I do it?…

Celanese Speaks

Operate Responsibly: a common mission of all Celanese facilities 

Honesty, openness, integrity and doing what is right is how we describe being a responsible company.  These basic principles guide how we act on a daily basis with regard to the community, our employees and the environment.

At the Bishop site in south Texas, we are very fortunate to have an excellent relationship with the local community, one which has been earned over the past 68 years. Quarterly community meetings are conducted to review the site’s major activities and address any concerns that may exist. Here are some examples of…

Celanese Speaks

The last 10% makes all the difference 

It just so happens that this is the right time to give my 14-year-old son the “last 10% speech.”  Anyone who’s been around a young teenager knows, they simply don’t understand what it means to get something done…completely done, leaving no strings, or mess left over. As your children learn to be responsible, and even begin to do their chores, and even help others (wow!), there is still one last instruction to give.

It is that no matter how much the 14-year-old thinks he has done, what matters is that he has finished the job.  Or better yet, that he has solved or performed a task to his parent’s liking. The only thing parents see is the last 10 percent of the effort.  For example, he may have gotten his own juice glass then the juice from the refrigerator, poured it, drank it, returned the juice to the fridge, and…

Celanese Speaks

They said it couldn’t be done 

Two years ago this month, we launched the Celanese Blog (CE Blog). Some people were anxious about discussing issues openly and honestly. But I wanted to hear from you; and I wanted you to be heard.

Our first blog tackled controversy head on. Ryan Morrison wrote Is Losing My Office a Good Thing? sharing his thoughts about the transition we were making from offices to an open space environment at the headquarters in Dallas. This change wasn’t popular. Yet he embraced the topic and challenged the water cooler talk.

In A Call for More Women Leaders Lu Zhang encouraged women to take on…

Celanese Speaks

The Corporate Vision In and Outside Your Box 

The parroted corporate vision sounds exciting, but as an employee, how will it affect me? This is a common question heard at the water cooler in many companies.

A vision — defined with future-oriented strategy — is a picture of what an organization could and should be. It appears to be far away from what we do on daily basis, but what every employee does daily will help shape the company’s future and help realize this vision.

Vision is not just a “pie in the sky” idiom we hear so often, but it’s everyone’s responsibility to…

Celanese Life, Celanese Speaks

A Little Creative Tension is Fun! 

If you didn’t run away from the title, you’re probably still thinking, “Come on!  Really?” or something along those lines.  But, really, it is fun, and if you stay with me for a few more minutes, I’ll show you why.

“Creative tension” or “healthy tension” is the catch-phrase of the day.  It refers to the tension that forms as a result of different groups or people trying to achieve the best result while going about it in different, sometimes disagreeable, ways; and that can lead to tension or conflict, which ultimately results in a more creative solution.

I’m in the Global Sales organization for Celanese, and I can tell you that we have our fair share of…

Celanese Speaks

How can your social network help Celanese? 

In today’s social media world of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, the personal networks are vibrant for everyone; and this vibrant network, when used by our employees, can also be used to drive new growth avenues for Celanese. 

We are in the business of solving customer problems by driving “the chemistry inside innovation” at our customers.  We also serve every industry that one can imagine.  We are in paints, we are in housing, we are in cars, we are in medical equipment, and we are in human bodies.  This diversity of applications and uses of our products provides an avenue for…

Celanese Speaks

Putting a European face on the Celanese vision, mission and values 

Some time ago, Celanese put its global vision, mission and values into an amazing, visually appealing original painting.  This was adapted in the different geographic regions of Asia and Europe. Shortly after the painting was formulated, our Celanese Asia colleagues also painted a beautiful picture reflecting the company’s global vision, combined with its Asian culture.

As employees in the European region were tasked with leading the effort of creating the visual representation of our vision, mission and values, we found it difficult to come up with…

Celanese Speaks

Less is More 

One of the common challenges we face in every aspect of our business is to provide more value at less cost. We have been on this journey for several years in Information Technology (IT) at Celanese; and as much of the low hanging fruit has disappeared, we are now facing a significant enemy that we must take on: complexity.

As we zero-in on a target total cost of IT services for the company, we have multiple paths. One path is to change services and sometimes service levels. Another is to be more productive in supporting all we have. But the most compelling path is to…

Celanese Speaks

Calling All Bloggers… 

Want to blog for us?  Have an interesting story to tell that relates to Celanese or the chemical industry?  We would love to share your perspective! 

As we approach the two year anniversary of the Celanese blog, we are looking for ways to expand the topics and readership.   We have had more than 80 bloggers and posted 110 blogs since inception.  If you would like to join us in making the next two years an even…

Celanese Speaks

The Era Of Ambiguity Leadership 

Why is it that we discuss our need to “deal with ambiguity?”  Ambiguity is approached with a similar level of disdain as we have for garbage – “we’ve got a lot of ambiguity – can someone take care of it?”  Ambiguity should not be seen as a negative, rather it is truly empowering.

Ambiguity is a “grown-up” sandbox.  As children we were literally given a box of sand and left to our own devices.  Think about it, there were no instructions, but we still built amazing things.  From mystical castles to major excavation projects, the sandbox gave us…

Celanese Speaks

24 Hours to Better Leadership 

The first business book I actually read was “What the CEO Wants You to Know.”  I remember admiring the way it looked; small and white with a band of red across the bottom. The author was Ram Charan; his name was strong and when I read the book I wasn’t disappointed. In a few sittings, I learned about business metrics, leadership and how to tell a compelling story using simple examples. Of all the business books I have owned, it’s the one that has…

Celanese International Impact Program, Celanese Speaks

The Celanese Foundation: Where We Have Been and Where We Will Go 

I can’t believe it’s already been over three years since we launched our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program, Celanese Connects.  I believe it has truly changed the culture and attitude here at Celanese.  It’s amazing what we can accomplish by coming together as one to make our communities a little better each day through programs like Global Impact Week, Celanese International Impact Program (CIIP) and our many volunteer efforts around the globe.

This is great, but how can we make an even bigger difference?   Seems like a difficult question considering the amount of time and effort we have put into our local communities over the past three years with over 25,000 volunteer hours contributed.  The answer?…

Celanese Speaks

Communicating change: “Me” before “we,” then “us” 

I can’t believe I’m going to do this. I’m about to share my secret weapon for change communications. When I tell you my methods you’ll say, “Right, I knew that all along.” But the real question is, do you apply what you know?

Early in my career, I worked at a heavy-manufacturing plant. We were implementing a new product line intended to improve quality, cost and competitiveness. In one way or another, everyone’s job would change.

The communication team was responsible for delivering a program to help the 2,000 employees support the new product. The changes touched all aspects of…

Celanese Speaks

Chemical engineering students partner with Celanese to produce video on the romance of chemistry 

When you think of chemistry, the first thing that comes to mind is science. However, a group of chemical students from South East China University of Science and Technology (SECUST) gave a different answer – chemistry is romantic!

This is the second year that Celanese has participated in the National University Chemical Video Contest, this time partnering with Mumian Pie (Kapok pie,) a team of three SECUST chemical engineering students. The contest is jointly organized by…

Celanese Speaks

About Walk the Line – Creativity and fun helps all of us connect to safety 

At Celanese we strive to operate responsibly to make a positive impact on our communities and the lives of those with whom we work. Considering the high number of impressive videos, Cangrejera was one of four winners selected for their exceptional creativity.

The KeepSafe team is proud to continue our blog series with the Cangrejera site. Their video is impressive, integrating more than 2,000 hand drawn pictures! This video not only underlines the creative talent we have at Celanese, but is a fun way to…

Celanese Speaks

What does KeepSafe mean to you? Video contest blog series showcases stories behind winning entries 

Working safely at Celanese is an essential personal commitment and value that ensures we keep ourselves, families and communities safe on and off the job. The Celanese safety identity, KeepSafe, was created with this in mind. We embrace safety as a personal responsibility to ourselves and our coworkers because everyone’s life is valuable and our families count on us to return home safe-every day.

Earlier this year we asked employees to participate in a fun…