From a developer to an uplifting people leader, Oren Shatil shares his unexpected journey into the world of management with the Dabra team and the lessons he’s learned along the way.

Going into management was not in the initial plan for Oren at the beginning of his career. Starting off as a developer, he quickly realized that he much preferred human interaction and connection over days spent sitting in front of the screen coding, and that this role wasn’t ideal for him.

From developer to people leader

After a few years, he made the leap into a consulting and later into project manager role, where he would spend 5 years before management opportunity opened up for him to step into. Having, at that point, zero prior management experience, he took this growth opportunity very seriously, teaching himself as much as he could about how to lead people.

Today, Oren leads a global product management team for SAP S/4HANA technology and innovations. The foundational pillars of his people-centered approach to management are: self-awareness, coaching and striving to understand each employee’s motivations. We sat down with Oren to pick his brain on all things leadership.

How would you describe your leadership philosophy? 

It comes down to three things:

Empathy, compassion and empowerment. 

I strive to understand each of my employees and then help them grow into the best versions of themselves. 

What would you say are the key ingredients for developing strong working relationships? 

Compassion: be curious and genuinely interested in people and try to understand their drive and motivation. This will make working together much easier and enjoyable. 

Most important lesson(s) you’ve learned in leadership? 

The power of listening. There’s so much that can be learned from taking a step back, slowing down and patiently listening to your employees before jumping to conclusions. 

Top advice for managers? 

Embrace differences. They’ll help you see new perspectives and add depth to your work. 

I would also provide separate recommendations depending on whether I’m talking to a new or experienced manager: 

  • For a new manager: I would recommend always observing and trying to learn as much as you can through observation. There’s so much that you can pick up from your employees, colleagues and other managers regarding how to lead. 
  • For an experienced manager: I would stress the importance of shifting the focus to employee needs and motivation and striving to empower your people. In turn, this will make you a true leader rather than just a manager. 

How have you been using Dabra? 

“Prior to using Dabra, I used email to manage my meetings. With Dabra, I am able to have everything in one place and always accessible, always able to document and keep track of all of my meetings with my team members.”

Enjoyed this article? Check out other interviews in the Leadership 1:1 series:

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