Sofia Marechal

Voltalia Careers: Follow Sofia’s path from Paris to Madrid

22 Mar 2022

Voltalia operates in 20 countries on 3 continents. As such, we are committed to offering a range of internal and international mobility opportunities to our employees, like Sofia. She has left her beloved Paris to take on a challenging new position in Madrid, and we couldn’t wait to find out more about her experience so far.

A professional path driven by a commitment to the environment

Sofia Marechal has always been passionate about global warming and the energy transition. In fact, that’s what led her to join us in the first place.

She was on the lookout for a company that had combating climate change at the forefront of its collective mind… And it did not take long for her to come across Voltalia. It was the very company she was looking for.

Sofia joined Voltalia in 2015 as Senior M&A & Financing Manager in our Investment & Financing department.

“Out of personal conviction, I wanted to get more involved in the fight against global warming and direct my career in this direction.”

Sofia Marechal Country Managing Director - Head of Spain at Voltalia

Today in Madrid, yesterday in Paris, but every day committed to her passion. That's what working at Voltalia is all about! Sofia has found a welcoming home in our company to meet her goal of a good balance between her personal convictions and her daily work. And she also quickly became interested in the career opportunities that Voltalia could provide.

But it's not just the work environment that brought her to Madrid. It is also her willingness to seize opportunities when they arise! And this is the first advice she would give to her colleagues: be aware and... dare!

Voltalia Careers: Pathways to international mobility opportunities

Sofia has had a number of encouraging conversations with management to discuss internal mobilities abroad as Country Manager. In the summer of 2019, after considering several options in different countries as Country Manager, she eventually settled on Spain.

The company accompanied her throughout the decision-making process, ensuring a smooth transition. She would subsequently take on the role of Country Manager, after a number of internal exchanges made her feel confident that she would be a good fit for this position.

It was a done deal: after her maternity leave, Sofia would take up her new position as Country Manager in January 2020.

“Voltalia's sense of ambition won me over and I could identify with the company's mission. I also hit it off immediately with the various teams.”

Sofia Marechal Country Managing Director - Head of Spain at Voltalia

Sofia’s new mission

As Country Manager in Madrid, Sofia's new mission would be to expand Voltalia activities inside the new market and to make a meaningful contribution to the energy transition in Spain. In order to do that Sofia had a lot of new responsibilities:

  • represent Voltalia in a new country
  • manage an expert-team
  • extend the services to this new market

This mission was fully fulfilled thank to Sofia previous experience, her knowledge about Voltalia business and the Spanish team.

An eventful and successful transition

“The experience was very unique and did not go according to plan because of Covid but everything turned out for the best in the end. Everyone had to adjust to make sure we were on top of things!”

Sofia Marechal Country Managing Director - Head of Spain at Voltalia

Due to the Covid pandemic, Sofia started in her new role by working from her home in Paris, participating in virtual meetings and getting her bearings.

Even though conditions were far from ideal, Sofia managed to get a feel for the team she would be leading, her new work environment and the challenges that her new responsibilities presented her with. “I got a lot of support from HR and top management in terms of how to manage teams from a distance”, Sofia said, when thinking back to that exceptional and challenging set of circumstances. But, as the saying goes: when the going gets tough, the tough get going.

With all parties involved contributing and thinking outside the box to come up with innovative solutions, Sofia felt right at home in her new environment when she eventually moved to Spain in August. Thanks to Voltalia’s efforts to create homogenous principles of governance across borders, Sofia made a smooth transition to her new position as Country Manager and was able to enjoy the experience of living in a new culture without needing to adapt to a new corporate culture.

A very rewarding experience

When looking back on her decision, Sofia told us that she could not have made a better career move. Aside from taking on a new range of responsibilities and developing additional skills, she was able to experience the international character of Voltalia first hand. On a more personal level, she wholeheartedly recommends living in a new environment, which she has found to be enriching, stimulating and highly rewarding. Not to mention the local team: moving abroad was a unique opportunity to meet and manage new people with a different culture.

“I was warmly welcomed and integrated by the team I came to manage thanks to Voltalia's spirit and corporate culture, she continued.

It’s exactly through the experience of pioneers like Sofia that this company-wide support structure has been fine-tuned, making international and internal mobility opportunities available to many Voltalia employees from all career fields.

“Flexibility is something I really appreciate at Voltalia. You're not confined to one position and you have the opportunity to completely change jobs to some extent. Management could not have been more supportive.”

Sofia Marechal Country Managing Director - Head of Spain at Voltalia

Sofia’s advice: Don’t be shy!

Here are Sofia's advice to Voltalia employees interested in international and internal mobility:

  • Bring the subject to your manager’s and HR’s attention and plan follow-up conversations.
  • Think ahead: it could take 2 to 3 years for the right opportunity to come along.
  • Be transparent and go about your plans in an organic way as new opportunities may present themselves at any time.
  • Go and talk to colleagues and friends who have already been through an international mobility experience or are currently working abroad.
  • Check the HR site regularly so you are always in the know about all of the opportunities that are currently available.

The caring culture of sharing and integration developed by Voltalia teams creates a favorable ecosystem for skills gain and international and internal mobility. Like Sofia, you would like to build your future at Voltalia?

Join us!

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