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Maribel's Story

At SAP, we believe that when you bring everything you are, you can become everything you want.

I realized very quickly after joining SAP that it’s entirely possible to find space to develop yourself as a professional while also being the best parent you can be.

Maribel Ortega

Meet Maribel Ortega, a Business Support Principal at SAP Colombia. Learn why she thinks SAP’s greatest asset is our teams and people, who bring not only their product knowledge, but their passion and charisma to solve customer challenges.

Starting as an SAP employee in 2013 in Bogota, I knew my career was about to take on a totally new trajectory. I had worked in consulting for other large tech companies in the Latin America (LatAm) region and had some experience with SAP products. But now, I was an SAP employee. The pressure I felt! When you are an SAP employee, working day in and day out with customers, you are truly the face of the products. For me, it’s a personal challenge, that need to be as close to excellence as possible, to present the best possible representation of our brand to our customers.

For the last 12 years, my son has been first and foremost in my life. He has brought more joy to my life that I can ever describe, but because he has a physical and mental disability, I have a special kind of experience and obligations, especially as a single parent during 7 of his 12 years. Working in consulting for so many years, I traveled quite a bit. I had to be where my customer was, which meant onsite in offices throughout Colombia and LatAm. As 2016 came to a close, I really did feel I was in a moment of crisis between my work schedule, my nascent relationship with my current husband and my son’s special needs.

I realized very quickly after joining SAP that it’s entirely possible to find space to develop yourself as a professional while also being the best parent you can be. Starting the course of my five years at SAP, I’d finely tuned my sales skills: how to go to market with our products, how to be a great speaker. Perhaps most importantly, how to be a good storyteller, in order to communicate not just in “SAP language” but, in the customer’s language. Everything we do here is customer centric, and focused on solving customer issues, non-SAP issues.

But working at SAP has also given me the freedom to focus on my son’s health and wellbeing, and also the ability to focus on the handicapped community within our own employees and also in the greater Bogota community. I am both a Differently Able Person (DAP) Ambassador for Services at SAP, and also a business owner of a small family company whose purpose is to show our community that small actions and changes can greatly affect the life of a handicapped person. In Colombia, accommodations with handicap parking, handicap accessible restrooms, and handicap accessible parks are pretty nonexistent or not respected. This is so limiting for a person with a physical handicap, to even step foot out of the house. I am beyond proud to work for a company like SAP, where I have the time to devote to a cause that is so near and dear to my heart.

I have learned to classify what “real” problems are, because of my son’s unique physical challenges. I bring that attitude to my work: no customer problem is too big to solve. Challenge is a better word; you can always find a solution to a challenge, or the right team to do it. There is huge opportunity at SAP; you are going to work with people in every region of the world. Our organization provides so many ways to open your mind, your network, and how you can solve the challenges of so many companies today. You just have to have the right mindset: keep it simple, and bring solutions. What is different about SAP is our teams, our people. We are knowledgeable, we have passion and charisma about our products and how they can solve customer challenges.

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