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Author's profile photo Tammy Powlas

Becoming an SAP Mentor – Moya’s Story “Fly your Freak Flag”

SAP Mentor nominations can be made year-round.  The current deadline for this round is March 1st.  More details can be found here.   A common question is how do you become a SAP Mentor?  See Colleen’s story here.   Today the great Moya Watson shares her story (see picture below)

Q: How did you become a Mentor?
A: I’m guessing my story is not a typical one — which probably proves the point.

I don’t think there was any one set of steps I followed or any clear thing I did, but I would say there are two main catalysts that propelled me to the high honor of being asked to join the SAP Mentor program:

1)     Rethink Love.

I have been a blogger on the SAP Community since its very early days. I just checked my profile on Moya Watson and found my first blog in 2004. Back in those days I blogged a lot on the products we were working on, but slowly I started to, sort of, stray.  In that straying I became closer to my heart and the heart of the community voice.

Key community engagement activist Marilyn Pratt picked up on that pulse in the early days and I’d say we “met” in away around one of my favorite posts, “Michael Wesch and Web 2.0: Rethink Love.

That piece really mirrors what community (online and off) is about to me, which is what has defined me going forward:

Tell your story. Be yourself. Fly your freak flag. (Hint: we all have one).

The SAP ecosystem touches all the corners and colors of the world and bringing my whole heart to engage with this community has been my guiding force and key contributor to my path towards becoming – and being – an SAP Mentor.

2) It Gets Better.

Engaging with the community inside and outside of SAP led me to volunteering to lead SAP’s local LGBTQ group, which led me to managing an extracurricular anti-bullying project aimed at supporting those of us who feel different (hint: all of us) and helping prevent suicide among youth who are having a hard time being gay or trans.

Yeah, they’re hard — but our hardest moments do not define us. Getting beyond those hard things we feel about being different, turning around from the other side and seeing that all along our differences are our greatest strengths — that’s what defines us.

We found that the anti-bullying message resonated so strongly inside SAP and out that we saw a lot of online activity and sharing of this work.  That’s when I really started to notice the Mentor program, and that whenever I needed anything online, SAP Mentors were always there — and SAP Mentors turned out in full force to share the messages of this film release.

I didn’t set out to do this, but this was the single most important work that led me directly to be asked to join the SAP Mentor program.  Here’s the story I put out about the film’s release:

(Pictured above: Moya’s family: Moya, Lucy, Leanne)

Q: What qualities does it take to become a Mentor?

A: You have to bring your own self – be the very best of that special thing that only you can be.  It will probably be much more beyond “your day job” that will lead you to becoming an SAP Mentor. Sure, your technology work is at the heart, but the things you go above and beyond to do? The things that burn from your heart in the midnight hours? Your passion?  That’s the right path to follow.

Q: How has your experience as a Mentor helped you?

A: I can’t even count the ways. I feel so much more connected with passionate people around the world.  I go to SAP’s tech conferences and have a home with fellow Mentors there.  I get on Mentor calls and they’re the best parts of my day. Through the program, SAP is fortunate to have such strong and honest engagement from the bright people actually using our technology. And I feel grateful to have such generosity of contribution not only on the technology side but on the personal side.  SAP Mentors are always there. Wherever in the world I might go.

Q: What recommendations do you have for others to become a Mentor?

A: FLY your freak flag. Every. Day.

Listen to Moya!  Thank you Moya for sharing your story and providing pictures.

Do you know someone who has what it takes to become a SAP Mentor? Be sure to submit your SAP Mentor nominations by March 1st.

Nominate Today 

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      Author's profile photo Colin Kraczkowsky
      Colin Kraczkowsky

      Moya is an inspiration and a mentor both inside and outside of the SAP Mentor program. Thanks for sharing your story Moya!

      Author's profile photo Jelena Perfiljeva
      Jelena Perfiljeva

      Great story and such a lovely family picture!

      "supporting those of us who feel different (hint: all of us)" - indeed! Well done.