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Leanne Caret shares experience, insight with Virginia Tech students

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Meet an inspiring leader with a lifelong pursuit to empower others. Named to Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women list five times in a row, Leanne Caret has a simple philosophy that she’s used to propel her career and invest in others. Learn how she puts it to use for Virginia Tech students in our latest Leaders+ interview. 
Lean Caret jokes, she has space and Boeing in her blood. Leanne: "And my mom and dad were both on the Saturn V program. I was born at Kennedy Space Center. I always love to say I'm a space baby." Leanne: "This is amazing technology." She started her Boeing journey in 1988, rising through various roles and becoming president and CEO of Boeing Defense Space and Security. Fortune named her to its Most Powerful Women list five consecutive years. Leanne: "I love life. I love people. I love our customers that we've served." She's committed to empowering the next generation. Leanne: "Boeing and Virginia Tech have a long-seated relationship and what is so fabulous about it, it's really focused on a joint interest which is providing opportunities and great talent and capability to make the world a better place." When it comes to being a great leader, Leanne says the magic happens when you have the four G's: Grit, gumption, grace and gratitude. Leanne: "Grit is about doing the hard work. It is about not asking people to do stuff for you that you wouldn't do yourself. The next is gumption. So this is where that inner voice, imposter syndrome gets all of us. We need to take the jobs. We need to choose the path that causes us to have that gut check, you know, that causes us to lay awake at night sometimes. My goal is to try not to screw up every single day. But more times than not, I do. And so I need grace. And I know I want people to give me chances and to do overs to do and be better. But part of that is our ability to give grace to others because they're gonna mess up just as much as we do. Finally, it's gratitude. And it's more than just saying thank you. This is about acknowledging people. It's about getting to know people. It's about when you're walking down the hallway and you see someone, you say hi. It's about actually listening when they talk versus thinking about what you're going to say. It's about how you treat people when no one's around." Leanne fosters talent and builds connections as an advocate supporting university recruitment for Boeing, and as an advisory board member with Virginia Tech. Leanne: "I think I get the greatest joy from connecting people. You know, somebody has an aspiration to do something. I have a large Rolodex. (laughing) Not that anybody knows what a Rolodex anymore is..." Dawn: "I do." Leanne: (laughing) "Okay. Thank you. But I have a large contact list in my phone. I love connecting people together and helping them achieve their dreams." Leanne Caret, a visionary leader, passionate about the future and dedicated to making the world a better place. Leanne "We can drive business, we can drive performance, but at the same time, we can create this unifying experience that we all need."