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What do Berlin, leadership and FIFA World Cup have in common? It could be, for example, Angela Merkel shooting selfies with the German football team in the changing room during the break of the world cup game Germany against Portugal. And what do Berlin and BTM² (Business Transformation Management Methodology) have in common? It could be a successful completion of the “black swan” project called Berlin Brandenburg Airport. But what do Berlin, leadership, FIFA world cup and the BTM² have in common all together? That would be already the seventh SAP Global Business Transformation Manager (GBTM) Master Certification which took place in Potsdam and Berlin on June 16-27.

One could claim that fashionable words such as transformation, innovation and leadership have been recently excessively overstretched and over-glorified and therefore their essence might have been seriously depreciated. However, in this regard the BTA‘s “in-house” master certification has again proven otherwise. The training, which was extraordinarily led by the program director Dr. Michael von Kutzschenbach and the program coordinator Joshua Meadon, attracted a manifold set of participants. All together there were 29 attendees: 22 from SAP and 7 external participants from SAP customers. All in all 4 regions were represented: EMEA (10), APJ (5), MEE (12), and NA (2). Every single participant contributed with an exceptional set of soft skills, profound industry expertise and years of experience in transformation and innovation initiatives. This turned out to be the foundation for amazing group dynamics which were reflected in creativity, innovative ideas, broadening of the worldviews, solution orientation, mutual learning opportunities, and, of course, fun in abundance.

GBTM Participants, June 2014

GBTM Participants, June 2014

During these ten June days the attendees were exposed to a mixture of fascinating and charismatic speakers that gave them an entirely new perspective on what being a trusted advisor really means and how you can tackle the associated challenges:

  • Dr. Peter Szabó: a one-day session on the essentials of the Solution-focused Brief Coaching
  • Prof. Dr. Andrew Kakabadse: a two-day case-study-based teaching session on the topic of strategic leadership and the importance of engagement and motivation for real evidence-based value delivery
  • Prof. Dr. Axel Uhl: a one-day session on BTM², strategies for business transformations, motivation through the goal-setting theory and the self-determination theory
  • Prof. Dr. Manfred Winterheller: a one-day motivational workshop on the continuum-based leadership approach to improve the quality of leadership, communication and personal development
  • Design Thinking by Hasso-Plattner Institute: a two-day workshop on the method how to boost the creative potential of diverse project teams and develop innovative, user oriented and yet economically feasible solutions
  • Dr. Guido Wokurka and Michael Wenk: a one-day workshop on key competencies of a trusted advisor, body language and emotional intelligence in business relations.


As always the participants had to go through the one-day Assessment Center with various challenging exercises which reflect real-life business situations that a true trusted advisor to CxO should be able to handle with excellence. After valuable individual feedback sessions provided by 15 senior assessors on the last day, the training was closed by Dr. Christoph Steiger, Head of SAP BTS EMEA, who handed over the certificates of the Global Business Transformation Manager.

The entire training was accompanied by fascinating FIFA World Cup games which additionally made it an exceptional experience for the participants from all over the world. Referring to the cheerful and optimistic atmosphere during the World Cup 2006 in Germany, one can say that this year’s GBTM was the “SAP Sommermärchen” (the Summer Fairy Tale).

GBTM Behind the Scenes

Thanks to the great effort of this year’s GBTM participant, Rob Llewellyn, you have the unique possibility to look behind the scenes of the Global Business Transformation Manager (GBTM) certification program. Rob conducted several interviews with the creators of the training and the trainers which we will be posting here and on the BTA website and social media channels.

  1. Interview with Dr. Michael von Kutzschenbach about the GBTM Program and the Business Transformation Academy
  2. Interview with Dr. Peter Szabó on Solution-Focused Coaching

This post was written by Tomasz Janasz and originally posted on the BTA Blog on June 30, 2014.

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