A big part of Sapphire and ASUG Conference ( Americas SAP user group) is about connecting people.
There is an excellent podcast here from searchSAP.com with the ASUG chairman, Rod Masney. Listen to what he has to say about ASUG and Sapphire, influence councils, executive exchanges, the role of the user, what would you ask Kagermann, ERP 2005 upgrade velocity, SME myths, local chapters, grassroots, Shai’s departure, outside in development, ASUG-SAP relationship….but the quote that stuck with me from Rod was “SAP wants to hear the voice of the customer.” Things are by no means perfect, but the tone is overwhelmingly positive.
SAP has SDN. This is a thriving community of developers. They’re passionate about code. IMO a few at least are in the wrong place. I’ve previously mentioned Eddie Herrmann and Dan McWeeney. I’d also count Craig Cmehil. These guys are geeks but they understand making a difference to business. They should be on the business side of the house with firm links to the code warriors. The reason for that while SAP has a business community, it is a million miles away from the goodness you see at SDN. What SAP is doing is demonstrating a massive commitment to engineering. Not people.
Hmmm….Great tribute to some of our heroes… but what’s all this about “wrong place”?
…I then continue reading and it stings me to the core: The point seems to be that SAP should have a business community like SDN:
I’d like to propose that we SAP folks obey Dennis’ advice.
Of course SAP must defend itself. But do it from a position of customer focused intellectual high ground. Get those conversations going.
So Dennis, Rod, Craig and Marilyn – how about meeting at Sapphire? The Sunday afternoon ASUG–BPX networking session , would have been ideal, but I think Dennis and I will still be in the air somewhere over Greenland. I’m also looking forward to meeting BPXer Cheryl from Intel, so perhaps we can all get together sometime in the week. I sense a great conversation and at least a couple of podcasts.