Global diversity

ExxonMobil conducts business in almost every part of the world. The diversity of ideas, perspectives, skills, knowledge and cultures across our company facilitates innovation and is a key competitive advantage.

Article Sept. 17, 2018

In this article

Global diversity

Global Diversity Framework

Through a range of programs, activities and investments, we strive to create and maintain a diverse workforce representative of the numerous geographies where we do business. Our Global Diversity Framework is the foundation for this approach, with three interrelated objectives:

  • Attract, develop and retain a premier workforce, from the broadest possible pool, to meet our business needs worldwide;
  • Actively foster a productive work environment where individual and cultural differences are respected and valued, and where all employees are encouraged to contribute fully to the achievement of superior business results;
  • Identify and develop leadership capabilities to excel in a variety of international and cultural environments.

The framework communicates these existing principles in the context of our increasing global operations.

Message from the CEO

Diversity and inclusion of thought, skill, knowledge and culture make ExxonMobil more competitive, more resilient and better able to navigate the complex and constantly changing global energy business. Diversity strengthens us by promoting unique viewpoints and challenging each of us, every day, to think beyond our traditional frames of reference. We are committed to building a talented and diverse workforce, and to creating an environment in which every employee has the opportunity to excel based on his or her performance. These are the core principles upon which we have operated for many years. 

Our diversity and inclusion efforts are comprehensive. They range from attracting and developing a premier global workforce within a work environment that values unique perspectives, encourages individual growth and treats all employees with respect, to educational partnerships and community development initiatives designed to improve the quality of life where we live and work. 

Our global workforce reflects the local communities and cultures in which we operate. Our objectives are to seek out and hire talented, dedicated employees and to give them the opportunity to learn, grow and succeed. The result is a diverse and multifaceted employee base of talented individuals, who have different perspectives and ideas born of their distinct backgrounds. 

Our diversity and inclusion record is one of which employees and shareholders can be proud, and we pledge to continue building a workforce that will ensure we remain a global company in every sense of the word.

Attracting a premier workforce

Global workforce

We search the globe for talented men and women from diverse backgrounds, and we encourage them to think independently, take initiative and be innovative. With our focus on hiring local employees, we have a positive impact on the economies in the emerging and developing markets in which we operate.

An employee analyzing corrosion control

Scholarships, grants and internships

ExxonMobil’s internships and financial aid initiatives play a key role in our diversity recruiting. Through practical work experience, scholarships, and university grants, we strive to identify the best and brightest students in the technical, engineering, science and business fields.


To help unlock the full potential of young minds, we support a wide range of education programs around the world. Over the past 14 years, we have contributed $973 million for education programs globally. These help our business over the long run by expanding the talent pool of scientists and engineers, some of whom will join us in the energy business.

Alliances and partnerships

ExxonMobil actively participates in a variety of recruiting activities that are intended to reach out to a diverse pool of highly qualified candidates. Examples include: 

  • Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities
  • National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering
  • National Black MBA Association
  • National Society of Black Engineers
  • National Society of Hispanic MBAs
  • Service Academy Career Conference
  • Society of Mexican American Engineers and Scientists
  • Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers
  • Society of Women Engineers

Eduardo Noronha

Administrative Assistant, Corporate Accounting Services

The Curitiba Business Service Center in Brazil encourages the inclusion of individuals with physical and mental challenges through its Minor Apprentices Program. The objective is to provide students practical training in administrative activities. “The program was especially useful for my understanding of what I must achieve and reach to grow both professionally and as an individual, to acquire professional responsibilities, and to control my own income and expenses. In other words, it gave me the tools to think of a better future.”

Educational programs we invest in

Scientists and engineers are critical for addressing the challenges of the 21st century. We invest in a range of programs that focus on inspiring and preparing students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. This includes programs like the National Math and Science Initiative, that foster increased access to college-level coursework for all students and ensure teachers have deep content knowledge in math and science.

ExxonMobil created the MENA Scholars Program to help develop the next generation of scientific leaders in the Middle East and North Africa. The program, which is funded by ExxonMobil and administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE), offers exceptional students from 14 countries the opportunity to earn a master’s degree in the United States.

Developing and retaining a premier workforce

Employee development

We place a high priority on employee development, with an approach based on long-term career orientation and development from within our global organization. Early identification and accelerated development of talent are critical. Regular and open dialogue with supervisors is encouraged. Employees’ skills and competencies are built through training and work experiences in a wide range of assignments in multiple functions around the world.

Dr. Kenneth M. Lee

Sales Manager, ExxonMobil Chemical Company

The adage is old, but Ken Lee can attest to the truth behind the saying, “If you love your job, you won’t work a day in your life.” Ken explains, “I’ve found that aligning my career and my passion makes my work seem less like a job and more fun.” Ken started working for ExxonMobil as an intern in high school; he was part of a program sponsored by the company. “I’m driven to solve problems. Every position has provided me with challenging assignments that are critical to our business success.”


We provide education and skills development through a proven global training curriculum, customized to our business environment, and through on-the-job training provided by multiple different assignments over a career. This helps us develop competent and committed employees who are fully prepared to meet future business needs, both locally and globally. On average, our major business units spend about $90 million per year on training, reaching more than 75,000 participants worldwide. To strengthen our technical capacity, more than 70 percent of our investment is directed to professional and technical training. In addition, about 4,000 employees at various management levels participate in ExxonMobil’s leadership development training programs, of which about 30 percent are women and 60 percent are employees outside the United States.

Employee benefits

Our benefits programs are an integral part of a total remuneration package designed to support our long-term business objectives, as well as attract, retain and reward the most qualified employees. The goal is to be responsive to the needs of employees throughout their careers and into their retirements.

Ensuring access to affordable health care helps employees manage health care issues and reduce related financial concerns, assisting them in being productive and focused on their personal and professional responsibilities. Benefits coverage for spouses is based on legally recognized spousal relationships in each country where we operate.

The funding levels of qualified pension plans comply with applicable laws or regulations. Defined benefit pension obligations are fully supported by the financial strength of ExxonMobil or the respective sponsoring affiliate. The company provides retirement benefits that support our long-term career orientation and business models.

A group of men training

Fostering a productive work environment

Workplace flexibility programs

Our workplace flexibility programs improve business and operational results by increasing employee engagement and facilitating retention. We offer a wide variety of flexible work arrangements, which may be customized and used individually or in combination to meet individual needs and preferences. Examples include remote work, modified work schedules, and part-time employment. Programs vary by country, based on culture, infrastructure, and legal frameworks.

Investing in diversity

We provide excellent tools to help employees understand effective cross-cultural communication and cultural sensitivities. These include:

  • GlobeSmart™ — This innovative web-based cultural tool provides easy access to information on how to conduct business around the world.
  • Essential teams & cultural essentials — This training helps bridge cultural gaps in global teams, focusing on communication, collaboration and cultural awareness.
  • Managing in a global organization — This web-based tool helps improve communication, team building and networking globally.
  • Mentoring and peer support — These programs help new employees quickly become effective in our global organization.


ExxonMobil’s global policies promote diversity and inclusion and prohibit any form of discrimination or harassment in any company workplace, anywhere around the world. These broad policies encompass all forms of discrimination.

Zoe Barinaga 

Process Manager, ExxonMobil Chemical Company

Zoe joined ExxonMobil in the Chemical business. She is active in ExxonMobil diversity and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math) related efforts. Zoe served as President of the ExxonMobil Women’s Interest Network at Chemicals’ headquarters and as President of ExxonMobil’s Global Organization for the Advancement of Latinos in Houston. “Participating in ExxonMobil’s Inclusion & Diversity initiatives and employee networks can provide opportunities for both personal and professional growth. It has given me a better and broader perspective on our workforce and our corporation. Not only have I enjoyed interacting with many different people across various organizations, but it has helped me by expanding my understanding of our business.”

Employee networks

We support local employee networks globally to foster an environment committed to diversity and inclusion. These voluntary, employee-led groups offer networking, professional development programs, community service, and proactively mentor and assimilate new employees.

Asian Connection for Excellence

Our mission is to facilitate personal growth and professional advancement of employees of Asian origin, and raise awareness of Asian cultures to enhance effectiveness when working with employees of Asian origin or with business partners in Asia.

ACE logo
Black Employee Success Team

Our mission is to serve as a support organization that provides mentoring, coaching, and networking opportunities to enhance the personal and professional development of black employees and further the business objectives of ExxonMobil.

BEST logo
Global Organization for the Advancement of Latinos

Our mission is to facilitate successful professional advancement and personal growth of Latino employees, consistent with ExxonMobil business principles.

GOAL logo
Organization for New Employees
Our mission is to build the most empowered and connected generation of leaders at ExxonMobil.
Organization for New Employees logo
People for Respect, Inclusion, and Diversity of Employees

Our mission is to support gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees and our allies, and to encourage awareness and understanding of diversity and inclusion issues around sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression in the workplace.

pride logo
Veteran Advocacy & Support Team

Our mission is to serve as a support organization that provides mentoring, coaching, and networking opportunities to enhance the personal and professional development of employees with prior military service or who are currently serving in the military.

Vast logo
Women's Interest Network

Our mission is to facilitate the professional advancement and personal growth of all women at ExxonMobil.

WIN logo

Developing leadership capabilities

Develop from within

We develop future leaders from within the company worldwide, drawing upon our diverse employee population. Employees from all over the world are developed for operational and leadership roles, both in their home countries and globally.

Leadership framework

Our business activities require leaders who can effectively collaborate and work in a complex global environment. A deliberate and focused effort across our company ensures that our future leaders are identified early, tested in challenging work assignments with increasing levels of responsibilities, and educated through a comprehensive and effective leadership development program.

The ExxonMobil Leadership Framework is embedded within our business practices and our employee development process. It includes three major components: 

  • Fundamental business principles
  • Essential personal qualities of leaders
  • Leadership behaviors to achieve premier business results

Elijah White

Vice President (Geoscience) , ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company

Elijah started as a summer intern for Exxon in 1980. Today he is a Vice President in ExxonMobil’s Upstream Research Company. Elijah defines leadership as “the ability to motivate and influence employees and to expand and strengthen their individual capabilities for organizational success.” Elijah shares that, “It is about people management and the ability to motivate an extremely talented and diverse workforce to achieve things above their individual capabilities.”

ExxonMobil Technology Center in Abu Dhabi

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