Marta Szapiel

Marta Szapiel is a director working with CGI retail and communications clients in Canada. A strong advocate for diversity and inclusion, Marta believes that the true strength of teamwork is the ability to bring together different perspectives. Through her journey at CGI, Marta has embraced the opportunity to try different roles and grow through learning, perseverance and collaboration. 

Marta, thanks for sharing your story. Tell us about how you began your career at CGI. 

I joined in January 2011. I was working for a non-profit organization at the time and felt ready for my next challenge. I saw an open position for a communications consultant role for Oxygen, CGI’s health and well-being program, which sounded like a great opportunity. At the time, I was hoping to work in a global company that offered a diverse environment where I could try new things, meet people from all over the world and grow my career.  

I had no experience in IT, but from my research on CGI, I learned about the various services offered to clients, the great employee benefits and the inclusive culture. I could see myself evolving and growing in CGI. 

And, has that happened? Can you tell us about how your career has evolved? 

Absolutely. Since joining, I’ve held varied roles in different teams across the company. 

As a consultant in the Oxygen team, I was responsible for the global communication strategy to promote our resources and initiatives. In my role, I collaborated with teams in many countries. It felt like I was working on something unique, as Oxygen’s programs are highly appreciated by CGI Partners worldwide. Working in this role exposed me to diverse perspectives and inspired me as well. I learned that the strength of a team is truly measured in our collective and diverse strengths in how we each bring something different but complementary. And, that’s when the magic happens! 

I then joined the corporate marketing and communications team as a senior consultant. I worked on communications campaigns with leaders in Canada, and I was part of the team that launched the first global corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative at CGI. This was challenging, but it was also gratifying. The program invited our team members from across the globe to submit community-giving projects to support their communities. I witnessed incredible initiatives come to life. 

That sounds amazing. Are you still doing this type of work?

After a few years of working in marketing and communications, I wanted to explore the technology side of the business, so I jumped at an opportunity to work on our health and well-being IP solution. Although I hadn’t yet been in an IT services role, it felt like the perfect opportunity to learn as I was already familiar with the solution from my years working in the Oxygen team. 

I helped implement the solution for several clients and consulted on their health and well-being digital strategy. I learned a lot about our client-facing business, including client relationship management, UI/UX, design, project management, marketing and consulting. I did most of this learning by reaching out to colleagues, reading up on past projects, working on proposals and doing research.

It opened the door that led to my current role as director. Most of my time now is dedicated to business development in our retail and communications portfolio. I work with different teams to present our solutions and services to clients, which requires more expansive technical knowledge and collaboration with many teams internally. Each role challenges me differently and helps me prepare for the next one.

What are some of the skills you’ve learned along the way that helped in your career progression?

I’ve always been creative, but my work at CGI has helped take my creativity to another level. It’s essential when we work with clients. It translates into how we propose solutions and services, develop innovative approaches, and solve challenges they face on a daily basis. 

Another skill is perseverance. We are often faced with issues that don’t have a straightforward solution. We need to persevere, ask questions, network and not be afraid to make mistakes. Some of my biggest learnings have come from mistakes and CGI’s culture supports this approach. The ability to persevere and strengthen our mindset greatly affects the outcome. 

Marta taking a walk with her daughter

That’s very true. How do you feel you’ve been supported in your career here? 

I’ve built an incredible network in my time here at CGI. I know I’m not alone if I need support or resources. And, if for some reason no one in my network is available, there are over 90,000 CGI Partners whom I know I can rely on. Since joining CGI, I’ve never met anyone who was unwilling to help if asked. 

I’ve worked with inspiring leaders who empowered me in my career development and encouraged me to take risks and venture into lesser-known territory, even when that meant changing teams. Each leader contributed to my career path, and I knew I had their trust. Every time I faced a challenge, I never felt alone, and that’s something I also try to bring to my day-to-day. If I feel like someone is struggling or I can bring value to a situation, I never hesitate to offer my help. Sometimes, just letting someone know we’re there for them if they need it can make all the difference. 

I’ve built strong relationships here. I have a busy life outside of work. I have two young children who keep me on my toes, so I’m grateful for my CGI family, who have been there every step of the way. 

You have an inspiring journey. Thank you, Marta, for sharing your experience and career journey so far!


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