For most organizations, the measure of success of diversity and inclusion initiatives has become merely a matter of numbers. However, creating equal opportunities for women leaders and challenged persons is more than a numbers game. Diversity and inclusion must not be enforced but embraced as an important pillar within the humane resource strategy. This multi-part series shines light on how women in SAP P&I Enterprise Cloud Services have risen to the top in their field. Each portrait shares insights, lessons learned, and tips for the next generation of women leaders in cloud computing.
In the sixth part of this series, Neha Jain, a Local Customer Engagement Partner in SAP Managed Cloud Delivery in Bangalore, India, speaks about how her interest in technology influenced her journey to become part of the HANA Enterprise Cloud Delivery team.
Neha Jain: Step Out of Your Comfort Zone and Find Your Own Glass Slipper
Cloud has become the backbone for the digital transformation of enterprises. India is one of the most rapidly growing cloud markets. Now in its second decade, it is a maturing market with many companies operating in a multi-cloud environment. Indian global players like Vodafone Idea Limited use the cloud as fast and secure path to become an intelligent Enterprise. With SAP as partner, Vodafone Idea Limited has chosen its cloud deployment models with the HANA Enterprise Cloud to navigate their business transformation. Neha Jain is the Customer Engagement Lead and primary customer contact point for Vodafone Idea Limited in Asia-Pacific, helping the customer to navigate the transformation process.
Neha started her technology career in 2007, after her bachelor studies in Computer Science, as an SAP Basis consultant. It was the first step to pursue her dream career in the tech industry. Neha had developed a passion for mathematics and computer science in school and graduated best in class in her studies. Never stop being curious is her philosophy and also the foundation of her successful IT career. “Before you start something, ask “why” this should be done. Sometimes what people ask for is not what they need. By getting all details and background, you can find the best solution. If you are never curious enough to ask questions, what you deliver may not address the actual need,” said Neha.
Staying curios is not just about asking the right questions, it is also about sharing knowledge and going outside one’s comfort zone. True to her philosophy, Neha advises to share knowledge in order to gain knowledge: “Don’t stay in your comfort zone. Step out of your worn slippers and try new ones on. This is the only way to develop new skills, unveil hidden skillsets and progress your career. Share your knowledge and others will care about what you have to say.”
Neha’s focus is to create better customer experiences and help others to do the same. As part of her mission, she joined the SAP HANA Enterprise Cloud delivery team in Asia-Pacific Japan. Her role as Customer Engagement Lead is demanding. It is a 24×7 job. She is responsible for the delivery of all contractually agreed services, liaise with all delivery units to ensure resolution of delivery issues, and manage all customer expectations.
“It is not easy to be the Customer Engagement Lead as a young woman. But the role was a welcomed challenge. It was my pair of new glass slippers; a move away from my comfort zone, but a perfect fit nevertheless. You have to show that you can go beyond the comfort zone and think ahead. That’s how you get accepted in meetings and by customers,” added Neha.
While technical and business expertise is important, equally important are believing in yourself and building confidence. “Take every opportunity to step up. Ask for career opportunities and you will see that possibilities exists at every stage of your career and life. For example, if you step into a meeting room with senior managers, don’t be shy. Share your voice and expertise,” advises Neha.
Neha recommends early talents to take on a similar role like hers to learn about the different facets of business requirements and customer service and collaborate across teams: “Be confident and ready to accept challenges. But most importantly, enjoy learning and share your knowledge, then you’ll find our own (unbreakable) glass slipper!”