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Curious as I was, I registered myself at the milk career fair as soon as I heard that this is a career fair focusing on diversity and encouraging the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) community in particular to join, get inspired and informed about job opportunities. I came across the SAP booth, informed myself about SAP’s diversity concept and was surprised about SAP’s effort on supporting communities. Employee-driven efforts go even beyond the given corporate contribution and help to become SAP’s vision a daily process and part of the company culture: to make the world run better and improve people’s lives.

As I made some research about SAP’s LGBT community, called HomoSAPiens, I was made aware of SAP’s commitment against bullying due to the “It Gets Better” initiative – already before my first step into any SAP building.

 

Although given that research background I still had to pass the application process. Fortunately I did and tried afterwards to find out how I can become part of a huge network and how I can contribute towards SAP’s vision.

Due to Moya’s approach to produce the “It Gets Better: SAP Employees” video and due to the participation of many SAP employees an emotional, lovely movie had been created, which Moya made successfully a major part of a forum to discuss the current state of teen bullying at SAP Labs in Palo Alto on June 7, 2012. Miguel, beside Moya another member of HomoSAPiens, was the passionate lead in Germany bringing this kind of event to SAP Headquarters in Walldorf, Germany, hosting it on November 27, 2012.

With approximately 200 employees on- and offline, their friends and families as well as several representatives of 14 external organizations joining the “It Gets Better” event, it became once again a multiplier of increasing the awareness of bullying issues and moreover spreading the word of hope.

Being involved within the organization of the “It Gets Better” event and seeing the result – a successful event touching people and making them aware of bullying – is an astonishing moment to realize how strong the work of one community can be and that SAP values and supports it even on Board level.

It had been interesting two month since I started working for SAP, so let’s see what SAP and communities within SAP will have in store for me within the next four month – until I pass my internship.

I’d like to end this blog by answering the question: which next steps could be helpful for all of us?

Share the “It Gets Better: SAP Employees” video, tweet* it, act against bullying, even share your fears to openly discuss the topic and finally spread the word of hope that it will get better!

*for tweeting, please use both hashtags #itgetsbetter and #sap in all your tweets, thanks.

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  1. Moya Watson

    Kai!  Thank you for the shout-out!  Yours is such an incredible story – it’s wonderful to know that just by helping SAP employees be who they are and feel safe for expressing themselves, we set an example as a workplace that others want to join!  If nothing else, and there are many other things, this makes my entire ten years at SAP feel worthwhile.  Thank you!

    When you say:

    > Employee-driven efforts go even beyond the given corporate contribution and help to become SAP’s vision a daily process and part of the company culture: to make the world run better and improve people’s lives.

    You’re so right.  And running better means each and every one of us run better, by being the best we can be.  Glad you have found a place to contribute!

    > I’d like to end this blog by answering the question: which next steps could be helpful for all of us?

    For me? the key is: Be yourself.  Model and teach that our differences are our biggest strengths.    And you, Kai, are doing just that.  thank you again!

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  2. Tobias Trapp

    Hi Kai,

    you asked which steps could be helpful for all of us. At first I think Moya is completely right: keep on doing what you are doing – and please keep on blogging! But I have another two pence:

    • Release the video or some parts of it – the story of Steve must be told. There are also so many more contributions from the panel and especially Luisa Delgado that should be released, too.
    • According to the motto of “do good and make it known” this message should be known in German LGBT community for following reasons: SAP’s work is a huge inspiration and SAP’s commitment to diversity is impressive.
    • After teh video is released spread the word: the LGBT and Diversity communities XING and LinkedIn: We should post the links there.
    • Make the campaign even more sustainable: there have been some good suggestions in the panel discussion.

    Let’s brainstorm a little bit how the campaign could reach SAP ecosystem:

    • What do you think about an anti-bullying event at SAP TechEd? We already had similar events about inclusion & design thinking and value of empathy.
    • I think it would be cool to have a T-shirt (or sportswear) with an anti-bullying logo and perhaps a QR code linking to SAP’s It’s getter movie. Perhaps part of the fee could go to Trevor project for example.
    • Do you know SAP TechEd Ribbon kiosk? We could try to create an anti-bullying ribbon.

    And last but not least: I think many people would like to help SAP to spread the word about the anti-bullying campain. So please keep us informed.

    And I have another idea: I already blogged about the event and I would like to write a follow-up blog and shared my ideas. Can you help me to find interview partners?

    Best Regards,

    Tobias

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