One of the best ways to show what Life is like at SAP is to share our employee stories to provide insight into their experiences and what being successful means to us at SAP. I am Heather Walker, and I work on the Global Employer Branding team. Over the last few months I have had the opportunity to speak with 50 colleagues across our Europe, Middle East and Africa region to help share their stories. Here is one of those interviews:
Karin, who is Swedish, splits her time between Norway and the Netherlands in her role as Director of EMEA North SAP Alliances. We spoke to her about her life at SAP.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
My dreams changed constantly as I grew up. When I graduated from High School I had absolutely no idea about what I wanted to pursue, so I became a ski bum for two years in Switzerland. I had a wonderful time skiing, learned French and made friends from all over the world, it also made me realize that I wanted to pursue a degree at a university.
What did you study at university?
I started studying literature at the University of Stockholm. My plan and dream was to work for a publisher. However, this plan changed after a couple of years. I moved to Norway for Computer Science studies at the University of Oslo. That was 25 years ago and I had classes in AI, NLP and subjects I thought I would never work with. But I was wrong. The, to learn Spanish, I went to the University of Complutense Madrid for a year.
When did you start working at SAP?
I started at SAP three years ago in analytic sales, which was something I had worked with in my previous jobs.
What are the key skills needed in your current role?
My understanding of technology and business as well as SAP’s strategy and future goals are important. Also, the ability to build relationships.
What does your career at SAP mean to you?
It gives me the opportunity to learn new things every day, to challenge myself and to work with customers and colleagues from all over the world. But it is also about new opportunities – SAP is a company where you can search for challenges and career moves.
If you could go back in time and give your 18-year-old-self one piece of career advice what would it be?
Don’t lock yourself up in conventual thoughts about jobs and roles. I had a conversation with one of our customers working for one of the largest banks in Norway a while ago. He told me that before they exclusively used to hire people with a MBA degree. To meet future challenges and requirements in the FSI sector, they now hire people with different educations such as political science, psychologists – a much broader variety of backgrounds to be able to adapt to new demands and new types of competition. A bank is not just a bank any longer. Creativity, diversity and entrepreneurship are important ingredients in all businesses where competition counts.
To see where Life at SAP could take you, click here.