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I am a big fan of Monty Python and I thought just for a change I would introduce something “completely different”. Monty Python in one of their most famous sketches have four old white men sitting around drinking copious amounts of red wine and telling war stories about how bad it was when they were growing up and the “kids of today won’t believe you”. In fact this pretty much describes what happens when Robbo, Rae, Voslo and I get together at an SAP Event. I am clearly the tryhard in this crowd as those three will easily drink me under the table.

In fact, I ripped this sketch off to poke fun at the mentors a few years ago at SAP TechEd.

Just like Robbo I have been enjoying the new Coffee Corner Radio Podcast from Simon Kemp and Jakob Kjaer. Ok … so I only listened to it for this first time today as I walked home from work… but they are doing a great job.

I also particularly like the episode with Moya which led to Robbo’s post which has led to this one.

We used to dream of living in corridor… 

I don’t want this to be a reflection of how great things were in the old days because they were not that great technically but we had a great bunch of people around.

So to riff on Jacob’s questions to Moya… what do we want to:

Start

You were lucky to have a lake…

We could all start with thinking just how lucky we are to work in this SAP stuff as it is. To work in the tech industry makes us some of the most useful people in the world. It is only going to get better. Better in the sense that as technology works its way into more corners of the world we at least have a handle on it and how it works. Imagine if everything was double-dutch and you could not understand anything about computers. That would make living in today’s world pretty tough.

And when I say lucky I don’t mean sitting back drinking Château de Chasselay, smoking cigars. I mean sending the elevator back down, giving people a leg up and paying it forward.

The is much more room at the table for people of colour, women, neuro-diverse people on the spectrum or LGBTI. We need to make more room at the table for all of these people and we need to make them welcome.

Stop

Well, we had it tough …

Actually, I have had it pretty easy. There are many people who are doing life much tougher than me and to continue the point from above except the other way around for emphasis… We need to stop putting barriers up to people from entering tech and contributing to the community.

This is why I was so excited at the recent Mastering SAP Conference in Melbourne, Australia when Bjoern Goerke introduced demonstrations of the technology the person doing the demo was not good ol’ Ian Kimble but rather Kristen Janssen. It was great to see that SAP was stopping old behaviours and creating new ones by promoting women on an SAP Executive keynote at an international event.

Continue

Tell the young people today that… and they won’t believe you.

Funnily enough the question that most SAP Mentors ask when they become SAP Mentors is now what do I do ? To which the answer is continue what you were doing that made you get noticed to be an SAP Mentor.

I think a lot of us will own up the point that we have disengaged from the community in recent times.

My continue point is we need to continue to engage. There is a lot to be happy about. We can work on the bugs and the features until the cows come home but what a community really needs is people to add content. If you are unhappy about the sterile marketing content from SAP then add your own unfiltered content that pushes SAP to do better.

We have never had a better platform than we have today. So continue to create good content and continue to push each other to do better and be more inclusive and welcoming to other perspectives.

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2 Comments

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  1. Jakob Marius Kjær

    Hi Nigel,

    Great blog and I like your unfiltered approach. This is exactly why Simon Kemp and I created the podcast. To spark engagement and get people excited again.

    I’m loving the debate with Moya Watson and what it has sparked in feedback from Robbo.

    I’m hoping we can continue this journey and provide good constructive feedback to help the people behind the sap community to.make it even better than what it is today and also was “when I was young”

     

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  2. Mynyna Chau

    Hi Nigel,

    this post is put in a nutshell and deep. I hope many will read your post, listen and act. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    Best, Mynyna

    (2) 

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