1 2 Previous Next

SAP Mentors

22 Posts authored by: Mark Finnern

Please nominate that extra special SAP expert who works tirelessly and selflessly for the SAP community's betterment to become an SAP Mentor.

Being an SAP Mentor will give that SAP expert more opportunities to make a bigger dent into the SAP universe.


Before you choose your nominee, check out the SAP Mentor Magic Foundation document to ensure you understand the traits that lead to magic: Lead by example, Passion, Constructive in Your Criticisms, No Culture of Entitlement and Inclusion.


OpenUI5 is one example where SAP Mentor's magic shined in 2013. For years different SAP Mentors have hammered away to make the life of an SAP developer easier. Whether fighting for better developer licenses or for easy downloads and access to SAP systems. We have been successful, just listen to Jim Snabe thanking SAP Mentors for their part in making HANA for developers freely available in the cloud.


Throughout 2013 the SAP Mentors were nudging SAP on a different developer related topic: "SAP has this great UI technology with SAPUI5. Make it available to a larger audience. Open source it". Turns out, that a similar push came from within the ranks of SAP employees and without this background commitment from the internal development it would not have happened.


There were many meetings with executives up and down the SAP organization via webinars and especially during the SAP TechEds in Las Vegas and Amsterdam, where UI5 was frequently discussed. It was one of the strongest signals from these meetings.


Once back, the SAP Mentors made the case:

        Check out the comments with great input from many SAP Mentors as well as SCN community members.


There was so much activity, that I am sure I am missing important people and events. Please post and link to them in the comments section.

I was privy to some of the discussions within SAP and even on the evening of SAP TechEd in Bangalore, it was still not a done deal.


Update: Improved picture of the announcement.

Below the picture I took with my phone.

OpenUI5 Announcement Michael Reh SAP TechEd Bangalore 2013.JPG

Much better picture of Michael Reh on the keynote stage shot by Jansi Rani Murugesan Thanks!



But then during the SAP TechEd Bangalore keynote the next morning Michael Reh announced OpenUI5. Rightfully wearing his honorary SAP Mentor shirt.

I was shaking with joy as you can see from the picture I took, or I am just a lousy photographer. ;-)


SAP Mentors are working with SAP to ensure that OpenUI5 is a success. Just check the activity regarding OpenUI5 in StackOverflow. OpenUI5 this year is the cornerstone of the outreach to developers beyond SAP.


This OpenUI5 example showcases the SAP Mentors at their best. They see an opportunity and work on all levels to improve SAP for the betterment of the entire SAP community.


Folks with fire to engage with the SAP community, the passion to collaborate and co-innovate with SAP and being a advocate for the SAP community even beyond SAP those are the ones that you should nominate to become the next SAP Mentor. Do it now!

Dear Hasso Plattner,


Your vision and leadership successfully developed and helped us navigate through three computing (r)evolutions: Real time computing with R/2, client server computing with R/3 and now in memory computing with HANA.


Come to think of it, you made the world and with that our lives run better.


You are in inspiration to all of us, especially the SAP Mentors.

As a token of our appreciation we collected some well wished on your big day from all over the world.


Happy Birthday and thank you for all that you have done over the years.



If people want to find out more about the different well wishers, all SAP Mentors are listed on this page.


Here some pictures collected over the years of engaging with the SAP Mentors.


First SAP Mentor contact DKOM 2011

Hasso Plattner with SAP Mentors at DKOM.jpg


First longer meeting with SAP Mentors at Sapphire 2011. It was set for 30 minutes and 70 minutes later we took this picture.

hasso with SAP Mentors sapphire 2012.jpg


Hanging out with SAP Mentors in Orlando 2012.

Hasso with SAP Mentors sapphire  2012.jpg


Happy to receive the SAP Mentor shirt 2013

Hasso Happy To Receive 2013 SAP Mentor Shirt.JPG            


Dr Prof Hasso Plattner - aka honorary SAP Mentor 007

HP 007 Medium.jpg

It was, is and always will be a balancing act to select new SAP Mentors. I feel it’s getting harder, with every year the initiative gets more prominence in the SAP ecosystem, and with that it really makes a huge difference for people who’ve been selected. And also for all the amazing SAP experts who didn’t make it…this time.


Sometimes I might get an email that says, "Look how many points I have on SCN, you have to make me an SAP Mentor now." I think that’s because some people believe mentorship is the pinnacle of what gets measured via the point system on SCN.


It is not.


We SAP Mentors created an SAP Mentor Magic Foundation document as a way for people to better understand the driving force behind being an SAP Mentor.


doug_engelbart_ac2004_2.jpgLet me try to describe it another way. When the inventor of modern computing Doug Engelbart was a young man, he created the following life principle:


     Let me design a professional goal which will maximize the contribution my career can have to mankind!


Doug Engelbart’s life principle translates quite nicely to being an SAP Mentor: As an SAP Mentor I focus on how I can maximize my contributions to the larger SAP community.


Yesterday, for example, Tom Cenens shared his journey of Influencing SAP Certification & Education. There, the spirit of mentorship really comes across. Tom is truly fulfilling the promise of us SAP Mentors. If you read his account, you realize that much of his work is in the background and invisible for most people. That’s true for many SAP Mentors.

Another criteria for selecting someone relate to our mission of being inclusive. We also look to fill gaps in areas of expertise, as well as to find people in locations where SAP Mentors could really add a lot to their local or regional scene. And we’ve tried to balance all these criteria with our new selections.


Without further ado it’s my pleasure to introduce everyone to this year’s new SAP Mentors:


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=17674&size=72Eduardo Chagas, John Deere Brazil

Eduardo has been part of the top three contributors in the Portuguese SCN space for three years in a row. He works for John Deere, which is a very innovative customer of SAP: The company was the first in the world to go live with Business Suite on HANA. He is also an expert in SAP NFE. He has even been invited by SAP to teach the SAP NFE academy classes. He’s not just an expert; he's also a sharer of his knowledge. His desire to share knowledge goes beyond SCN at ASUG meetings and in SAP Education classes, where he's an official instructor.


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=30833&size=72Sharon Newton, hyperCision USA

Sharon is the CEO of hyperCision, an SAP and SuccessFactors partner. She has deep expertise in SAP HCM, SuccessFactors Learning and the integration of cloud with on-premise applications. She co-authored the book SAP Enterprise Learning and created popular compliance solutions for customers. She is a well respected thought leader and consistently educates customers via her talks at SAP events including TechEd, FKOM, Sapphire, SAP Insider US, SAP Insider Europe and HR Technology Conference. She has identified gaps in SAP solutions and built key technologies and applications to solve customers problems in the US, Europe and Africa. She has more points on SCN, we are consolidating other users with this new one.


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=23897&size=72Alex Papagiannidis Rivet, Molson Canada

Alex is a Canadian SAP customer working for Molson North America’s oldest Brewery. He speaks French and works from Montreal, representing the SAP Beverage industry and acting as a BI Partner/Liaison with the business side of Molson Coors. They use the full suite of BI products, including Analytics, Mobile BI and HANA. Alex presented at the first BI4 Elite training in Vancouver last year and he spoke at the ASUG annual conference about how BI helps Molson Coors sell beer. He is planning to discuss his HANA story at the upcoming SAP TechEd in Las Vegas. Title: "Looking at one source of the truth with Design Studio Mobile on HANA " He also took time to present two sessions on Molson’s use of BPC and BI during SAPPHIRE this year.


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=3130&size=72John Patterson, Australia

John works a lot on UI5 and Gateway. He’s among the few who jumped early into these technologies, have a play with them and share their experiences. Some things that John brings: Ease of approach, enthusiasm, being a pioneer and knowledge sharing. He brings passion into discussions and tries to explain whatever he knows. His blogs and tweets reflect that.

John has spent the last 15 years working as an SAP user and system integrator. He started his SAP career in the mid-late 90's as a web developer cutting his teeth rolling DCOM, CORBA and RMI SAP connectors. Technology and techniques have come and gone but the customers—and their requirements and problems—have stayed the same. John doesn't just touch new technology: he pushes it beyond the usual boundaries and is happy to share his learning.


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=5376&size=72Nicolas Busson, NB-Conseil France/Switzerland

Nicolas is at heart an application consultant in the CRM space, but is at home on the technical side as well, as attested by his involvement in a couple of code-exchange projects. He has long-standing expertise in CRM and is now learning how HANA will open up new possibilities in the customer relationship area. He is a very engaged member of the community. He did some wonderful work in spreading awareness about the latest SAP CRM technologies in France. He recently left France and took a job in Switzerland.


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=10969&size=72Stephen Lofthouse, Sheffield Hallam University UK

Stephen has taught ERP using the standard SAP University Alliances (UA) curricula for several years. He has helped design SAP UA Business ByDesign and Cloud curriculum. He acted as the UA spokesman on cloud issues and is one of two speakers on our Business ByDesign training video and course. Stephen is not only technically proficient, but he is also an excellent ambassador and spokesperson stimulating young minds to become aware of SAP as a career path. He is skilled as a speaker and presenter as well as an educator.


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=5509&size=72Steve Bogner, Insight Consulting Partners US

Steve is one of the most knowledgeable SAP payroll consultants. Starting in 1994 (and even before that) he spent many years in the payroll field. He has a wide breath of knowledge across a wide range of industries. Steve founded the SAP HR Insights podcast, which in and of itself is a huge contribution to the community.

He is the go-to expert in the area of SAP Payroll, in no small part because of his numerous conference presentations. Moreover, he's just a good guy. His calm wisdom makes him someone who the community can be proud to consider as a Mentor. He has a newsletter for SAP HR customers and also has a blog following. He works well with customers and is always looking to improve SAP customers’ experience.


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=30914&size=72Wences Lacaze, Argentina

Wences is a functional application lifecycle management consultant and a specialist with SAP Solution Manager and CRM, Enterprise Portal products. He shared several very detailed functional documents on SCN and SlideShare. He’s a very experienced and engaging consultant who many customers know well.

As Blag has left Peru many years ago, our only other South American SAP Mentors were from Brazil. It makes us happy to add Argentina to the list of countries that now have SAP Mentor representation. Interestingly, I found out after speaking with him that he’s working for a Chilean consulting company that has sent him to Mexico on a project focused on transportation. Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Mexico. Wow, looks like we have the South American continent covered. ;-)


http://www.hs-lu.de/uploads/pics/Freyburger_Klaus_01.jpgKlaus Freyburger, Hochschule Ludwigshafen am Rhein Germany                                            

Dr. Klaus Freyburger, who teaches at Hochschule Ludwigshafen am Rhein, is one of the SAP University Alliance’s most visionary members. His focus is SAP HANA, Analytics and Sentiment Analysis with SAP HANA. Together with his students and SAP he created several amazing applications, such as the SAP Data Base of Dream which was presented at SAPPHIRENOW 2013, and the Sentiment Analysis of the American Election (based on HANA), which was presented at SAP TechEd 2012. He works with a blended learning approach: Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs) plus co-innovation projects.


http://scn.sap.com/people/mahesh.kumar8/avatar/46.png?a=17240Mahesh Kumar, Rolta India Limited  India

Mahesh is a BW, BOBJ, HANA expert with more than 10 years’ experience in SAP consulting and very strong subject matter expertise in the business intelligence and analytics domains. Manesh is highly effective in customer interaction roles, and has a solid knowledge of SAP technical and presentation skills. Today he likes taking on challenging roles and projects: one immediate example of this is his current work on SAP HANA proof of concepts. He writes these elaborated blog posts, where you think he has a team of researchers behind him. Like this one Big Data Technologies & Applications where he compares the data structure of SAP, IBM, Oracle, SAS, Open Source. When I asked him about it he said, that the best way to understand is to share, you research deeper. Really cool.


http://scn.sap.com/profile-image-display.jspa?imageID=5192&size=72Aviad Rivlin, SAP Israel

Aviad is a product manager for the SAP Portal. He’s also a driving force behind the new mobile portal product known by the name Portal On. As SAP regained its love of portals, everything with a web-based (HTML5!) UI/UX is touched by portals. This includes Neo, HANA, Cloud, HEC, HCP. Aviad is an expert on UI technologies and mobility. He’s an extremely talented and creative individual who has customers’ interests at heart. Aviad knows tech, but also the functional side very well.


http://scn.sap.com/people/agasthuri.doss/avatar/46.png?a=26747Agasthuri Doss, SAP Australia

Agasthuri is a Senior Integration Architect with SAP Australia. He has more than 15 years of SAP experience in system architecture, planning, development and production support of ERP-based implementation. Agasthuri is very active on the SCN PI forum both as a moderator and as a contributor. He has also completed the mammoth task of cleaning up the PI Wiki space, deleting old/obsolete content, etc. He has been a frequent speaker at SAP TechEd and other SAP events.



I am really excited about them joining the SAP Mentor wolf pack. If you’d like to meet them online, we are having two public SAP Mentor Webinars next week October 8th 10am + 9pm PST, where the new Mentors will introduce themselves and share one piece of advice during that session. Hope you can join. Personally I can’t wait!


SAP Connect Session: https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/sapmm +1-866-312-7353

Participant Passcode: 170 133 7730

SAP Mentor Monday additional dial-in information


SAP Mentors are amazing. They really help to move the needle in the SAP community, influencing or even co-innovating with SAP, all while having a successful career on their own and, as far as I can tell, balancing their busy work schedule with friends and family, too. On top of that, they often find time to give back by volunteering for a cause of their choice.


How do they do it?


Personally I’m struggling a bit with my schedule. I have too many emails in my inbox. This announcement blog post should have been out weeks ago so that it could have been in the SCN announcement cycle, such as on the SCN home page or in newsletters. For years, I’ve wanted to fully implement David Allen's GTD methodology, but didn’t find the time or, more accurately, didn’t really make time for it.


To procrastinate further, I put together a public SAP Mentor Monday webinar in order to find out:


  • What are SAP Mentors doing to be so productive?
  • How is work/life balancing really working out for them?

Recording availabe here: https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/p30ttu00ntu/

Please join us on Monday 30th of September at 1:00 p.m. PST

Participant Passcode: 170 133 7730

SAP Mentor Monday additional dial-in information



We have three main panelists, each of whom will briefly share how they get so much stuff done. As a little teaser, I asked each of them to share one tip before the webinar.



Thomas Jung Jung was recently the presenter at the super-successful HANA development MOOC. For many years, he was the top contributor to SCN in the ABAP space and seemed to make presentations all over the world on an almost weekly basis. He once admitted to get up at 4:00 in the morning, because that’s when there was the most action on SCN’s ABAP and BSP forums.


His tip: Take screenshots of what you do for later reuse. I take screen shots all day long and use Camtasia SnagIt to automatically catalog them by date. It’s not just useful for blogging, but I often find myself going back for all kinds of reasons. It’s almost like a journal of what I was working on.



Tammy Powlas seem to be everywhere on SCN as well as SAP and ASUG conference presentations. During this week’s SAP Mentor Monday, she ran another session where she shared her BI expertise.



Her tip, which she learned years ago from a book called How To Stop Worrying and Start Living: “Create a list of things to do today,” ideally the night before. She herself does it the first thing in the morning and then crosses off completed items.



Jon Reed shifted his career path on the fly a number of times. At one point he ran an SAP recruiting firm. Now he's a successful blogger and ERP analyst with video taking on a key role. He credits a creative approach to time management with making these shifts.. Jon has the amazing ability to stay levelheaded when the emotions run high within the SAP Mentors and brings us forward.


He went beyond the call of duty and gave 3 tips, 2 I am sharing here: Using Dropbox (or similar tools) to sync content across devices (you want to have an "I can work from anywhere mentality.


Protect your ability to unplug to get key deliverables done--use filtering tactics to have "degrees of unpluggability," from "fully available," to "available to key clients/employer only," to "family/emergencies only." Use additional email addresses, alerts, or apps to improve such filtering rather than defaulting all your emails to one device you can't turn off when you are awake.


Really looking forward to the upcoming SAP Mentor Monday webinar. I am convinced that one of the keys to a happy life is the satisfaction of making a difference, even if it is a small one. These tips help us all to go from thinking about solutions to actually implementing them.


Even before the webinar, it would be awesome if you would use the comments section to share one tip that really helps you to get stuff done.May be I get to inbox zero one day too.

The pace of technology change is accelerating. Every quarter, companies like SAP are coming out with new technologies, such as SAP HANA or mobile solutions, increasingly these represent major shifts. For customers these solutions create enormous opportunity but the pace of change is overwhelming.

In technology and business, classroom-style training--and other traditional knowledge transfer methodologies--can no longer keep up. When we talk to our customers, they tell us the biggest inhibitor to adopting new technology is a lack of trained people.


To solve that problem, SAP is the first major corporation to offer free Massively Open Online Courseware (MOOC) to anyone who wants to join. The first group of course participants completed a MOOC, called  Introduction to Software Development on SAP HANA, a couple of weeks ago.


MOOCs are notorious for low retention rates of 6.5% on average. This isn’t surprising, since the courses are free, it’s super easy to sign up and in a world of distraction and hyper-fast business cycles, a 6-week course can fall off the priority list. .


But the SAP MOOC numbers from two weeks back are super impressive. And I mean super.


Here some course statistics:

  • 18,033 learners were enrolled for day one of the SAP course;
  • When the final exam ended, this number had increased to 40,386;
  • 10,795 learners “wrote” the final exam.

Think about that: As the course went along, learner participation doubled to more than 40K learners and more than 10K learners took the final exam. Which means that the retention rate was 26% or a rate that’s four times better than the average MOOC.


Praise all around to Clemens Link Thomas Jung, Geoffrey Nolan, Rich Heilman  There are many more, but these are the people I know about.



Here is part of the team in Walldorf when taping the course with Thomas Jung in the middle. Taken from Thom's blog post introducing the course.

From where I see the world, with SAP Mentors and SAP TechEd, companies that innovate new technologies must disseminate that knowledge to as many people as possible within the shortest amount of time.


Well-developed MOOCs are developing to be the key to success. New technologies create enormous opportunities. People want to take full advantage of these opportunities and this is why the flock to these courses.


That’s why I really believe this course is a watershed moment for corporate education. As far as I know, SAP is the first FORTUNE 500® company to do a MOOC. Ten years from now, people will look back and say that was the time when business and technological education experienced a phase shift.


It will be quite a challenge for universities to keep up and compete with company provided free courses. Clay Shirky blogged more about that massive change that is coming to higher education: Napster, Udacity, and the Academy


So, who’s behind this education revolution? Both global trends and tech luminaries, such as SAP’s Hasso Plattner. I’m in awe of the technology revolutions to which Hasso Plattner has contributed: real-time computing with R/2; client-server with R/3; and currently in-memory database with HANA. And now, via theHasso Plattner Institute and OpenSAP, he’s bringing the education revolution to the enterprise via MOOCs.


Join the MOOC revolution and sign up for the Introduction to Mobile Solution Development that started this week and has already 23K participants. This excellent guide tells you how to get your system ready to get the most out of the course. Enjoy!


Update: Forgot one of the fathers of this session: Jon Reed who when talking with Tim Guest suggested to share this great story via the SAP Mentor Monday. He will moderate the session.

SAP Mentors are not only experts on advanced SAP technologies. The truth is they also do cool stuff by giving back to the community.


Tim the Guest Studen Innojam Ireland 2013.jpgYoungRewiredState DJ Adams.jpg


I am with Douglas Rushkoff who wrote a book called: Program or Be Programmed. [Video of Doug's SXSW presentation from 2010.]


Rushkoff believes that for our kids growing up, development literacy should be as important as reading, math and creativity.


That’s why I’m super excited that in the upcoming SAP Mentor Monday webinar DJ Adams and Tim The Guest will share stories about how they introduce youngsters to coding, as well as help them to understand how to solve problems using “design thinking.”


You can subscribe to the SAP Mentor Monday Webinar series via our public calendar. The webinar series makes it possible for audiences around the world to benefit from SAP Mentors’ expertise and stories.


Please join us on September 3rd, which is a Tuesday, as the Monday is Labor Day in the US for Young Rewired State (YRS) & Student SAP InnoJam Ireland with DJ Adams and Tim the Guest.



P.S. On the topic of children, teaching and creativity, one of the hardest things to do is to make sure young people’s creativity is nurtured, not crushed by our upbringing.


As some of you know, I presented 5 Ideas to bring our schools into the 21st century at TEDx.

There’s no better place to spread these ideas and develop them further than the South By South West Education #SXSWedu conference next spring. I put my hat in the ring to present and hopefully further develop these ideas there. It would be great if you could vote for my session. Many thanks in advance.


Recording of the session available here: https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/p2e54c4uxt2/

Update: Summer of '69 was taken down. See further down.


One of the most enjoyable events we ever created was the SAP Jam Band at SAP TechEd in Las Vegas last year.


One evening, once the main program on the show floor was over, we brought out instruments and played some great tunes that everyone can sing and dance to. We had the lyrics on a big screen to make it easy for everyone to join in.


Picture by Ali Samieivafa


What a joy it was.


[Unfortunately Brian Enoch's rendition of Summer of '69 got taken down :-( Copyright infringement. But it was a parody and a hat tip to Brian Adams at the same time ;-)]


As you can see in this video, it is a forgiving crowd, singing off tune [which was mostly me in the background during this song] is no problem.

Everyone has a good time, is singing dancing, clapping, moving to the music :-)


The goal of the event is exactly that: after a full day of concentrated learning to relax enjoy some good music, sing and dance.


If you want to be part of this event, please join us at our next SAP Mentor Monday August 5th 1pm PST when we will coordinate our activities and see whether we will be able to get enough momentum to rock in Amsterdam and maybe even in Bangalore too. It all depends on you doing your little part, stepping up to the microphone, sing and make some music. Rock-On!


SAP Connect: https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/sapmm +1-720-897-6637,, 378 224 4518# [more dail-in details]

Replay:  https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/p87244999/

Quick link: You know the drill already? Here is the link to the form:

Nominate amazing SAP Experts to become SAP Mentors


Not so sure yet? Who are they again?

SAP Mentors are the top community influencers of the SAP Ecosystem. Most of the ~130 mentors work for customers or partners of SAP. All of them are hands-on experts of an SAP product or service, as well as excellent champions of community-driven projects. More details on SCN: http://sapmentors.sap.com or via the SAP Mentor Introdcution Slide Deck on SlideShare.


The best way to get to know SAP Mentors and what it is all about is via stories and we collected some of them over the years:


Beyond SAP many of us do charity work and some even combine SAP, charity and mentoring, like John Astill tutored middle schoolers to 2nd place at SAP TechEd Demo Jam in Las Vegas last year. [Video]

John Astill Tutoring Middle Schoolers to Second Place Demo Jam.jpg

You may still wonder: So what exactly is it that makes the SAP Mentor magic happen?

We have a document for you that all SAP Mentors put together describing exactly that.


More open questions? May be you find your answer on the SAP Mentor FAQ page.

Or post it as a comment to this blog post and we are happy to answer.


One of our biggest goals is for the SAP Mentors to represent the whole spectrum of the large SAP ecosystem. If you know an amazing SAP expert who works in France, Russia or Japan, please nominate, as these are countries where SAP has a big footprint, but so far zero SAP Mentors. It should be a matter of national pride to have at least one ;-) The SAP Mentors have influence into the highest level within SAP and it is unfortunate if some countries' voices are not represented. Please also nudge customers to step up and fill the SAP Mentor role, We would like to get back to our original 30% customer, 30%partner, 30% individual consultant and 10% SAP employee ratio. Women as well should lean in, their voices and ideas are so important in our conversation. Another vector is expertise and as the imitative grew out of the original SAP Developer Network, we are strong on the technology side of the house, but our ranks could really benefit from more functional brain power and especially industry expertise is missing. We are living in interesting ever accelerating times, we need to know where things are going and Startups are making it happen, lets also make sure that some of them have a seat at the table. 


I know you have someone in mind that would enrich the ranks of SAP Mentors. Please nominate that amazing SAP Expert to become an SAP Mentor


We will take into consideration all nominations and will announce the new SAP Mentors before the SAP TechEd season in the fall.

Come and join us for the now traditional Daily Wrap-Up with SAP Mentors.


P1020619 resized 600Wednesday and Thursday the last half hour before closing of the show floor from 5:30pm to 6pm the SAP Mentors will gather with everyone else who is interested at the ASUG theater.


We will reflect on the announcement of the day and what they mean for our customers and partners. What can you take home and start doing come Monday morning when you are back in the office.


We will also share which demos or sessions where outstanding and shouldn't be missed.


We will have an open mike and you don’t have to be an SAP Mentor to share your insights.


Shilling your own session or product is frowned upon and will result in you having to do 5 push ups on the spot.

The number of push ups may be adjusted to the perceived fitness of the offender ;-)


See you all there. Will update this post with map and picture of the ASUG theater once I have one.

Or you can post it in the comment.


Picture to the right bu Bruce Armstrong

Fellow SAP Mentor Paul Kurchina made may day when he send me an email with the subject line: You will like this.

How right he was, pointing me to an ASUG press release announcing that Seth Godin is going to keynote the ASUG Annual Conference happening next week. An event which is co-located with SAPPHIRE NOW. Never have I been looking forward to an ASUG keynote as much as this one.


If you have ever been introduced to the SAP Mentor initiative, you know why.


Years ago Craig Cmehil and I realized what a difference it would make to create an initiative around your most passionate community influencers and how that would be beneficial for everyone involved. It is fulfilling the promise of Enterprise 2.0 of creating tighter bonds, greater engagement and shorter feedback loops within a company's ecosystem of customers, partners and individual consultants.


We created the SAP Mentor initiative. At the beginning it was hard to make people understand its potential. There was a lot of uncertainty and fear of the new that we needed to overcome. Then Seth Godin came out with his book Tribes with the Money Quote on page 30: Most organizations spend their time marketing to the crowd. Smart organizations assemble the tribe.


Seth is just an amazing communicator. With that quote, he hit the essence of what we were working on, what we are achieving with the SAP Mentors. It clicked, with SAP Mentors we are assembling SAP's tribe.


People understand it or at least it piqued their interest and they pay close attention.
This is why for years I start off my SAP Mentor introduction slide deck with Seth's quote:


          Sap Mentor Initiative Introduction by Mark Finnern

Seith Godin SAP Mentors are SAPs Tribe.png
Link to SAP Mentor Introduction Slide Deck.


With the help of the SAP Mentors we have updated that slide deck just today. With 20K+ it is the most viewed official SAP deck on Slideshare.


I always wanted to ping Seth and tell him what amazing things happen when a company fully embraces his Tribe concept. Well, we started before his book came out, but it just confirmed that we are on the right track and that gave us the extra boost of confidence,


Have I piqued your interest too? More details you can find at SAP Mentors' main page http://sapmentors.sap.com

Over the years we have also collected a couple of stories where SAP Mentors are making a difference in the SAP Ecosystem: Kick-Starting a Virtuous Circle in Field Sales;Tales of Two Inside Tracks, SAP Mentor-Style; All for One and HANA for All; Advocating for Excellence; Tree of Talent; The Inside Track on Community Engagement; Trust + Results = Success


I am convinced that at a moment other enterprises realize the power of such an engagement and will start to develop tribes for their organizations too.


Seth is amazing at crystallizing trends and making them accessible to us, that is why I can't wait to hear him talk on Tuesday later afternoon as part of the ASUG Annual Conference keynote. Find me at the front of the stage proudly wearing my SAP Mentor shirt with the number 88 :-)

SAP Mentors are living and working all over the world. To keep everyone informed and up to date we are using webinars extensively, as it allows us  to let people participate wherever they are. With recording it also enables us to time shift these sessions. Even though with the recording you can only join the conversation afterwards.


So we are hosting 2-3 of these webinars every week and over time have come up with quite the elaborate flow, that I am introducing in this little video.



In short we are following a flow that is supported by different layouts that the web host can quickly shift in between.


  • Introduction with the webcameras taking center stage.
  • Sharing layout: The presentation slides or sharing of a computer screen are the focus.
  • Q&A: The two chat pots are brought to the foreground.
  • Final check how the webinar was and good bye


Where the sessions come alive is during the Q&A, as the SAP Mentors have an enormous wealth of expertise, their questions are usually bringing the dialog forward. Or highlighting an aspect that people where not aware off before, may be by highlighting an aspect from a different part of the world.


This is why we limit the presentation part to maximum 30 minutes, to give the Q&A portion ample time to develop.


Check it out! You may want to join us during our traditional SAP Mentor Mondays.

May 6th it is going to be the second part of the New SAP Mentor introduction happening at 4pm PST.

Are these new SAP mentors really inspriing? Check out for yourself.


Join one or both of these public SAP Mentor webinars where they will introduce themselves and share something from their expertise with us.

First one is this Thursday 2nd of May 9am PST and the second one is 4pm PST on Monday 6th of May.


Link to SAP Connect Session:https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/sapmm +1-866-312-7353,,3782244518 Participant Passcode:  378 224 4518

SAP Mentor Welcom Webinar 2013 Spring.jpg


Ronald Konijnenburg took the above screen shot from his iPhone during our first internal welcome calls. He was participating at 1am from his Florida vacation and at the end commented, that it worked surprisingly well.


I am still amazed, that we are able to connect with people in this case: Florida, California, Netherlands, Australia and Singapore and have a great conversation.


A couple of years back, it was like pulling teeth to get anyone on camera. These days everyone has it built into their laptop and are sometimes astonished that it works.


You can check it out too this Thursday at 9am PST  and or on Monday at 4pm PST.


Really looking forward to what expertise the new SAP Mentors will share.


If you can't, we will record it and share it with you here. 


Link to SAP Connect Session: https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/sapmm +1-866-312-7353,,3782244518 Participant Passcode:  378 224 4518

Country                Number              

US and Canada  1-866-312-7353

US and Canada  1-720-897-6637

US and Canada  1-646-434-0499

US and Canada  1-484-427-2544

Argentina            0800 444 1292   

Australia, Melbourne     +61 3 8687 0624

Australia, Sydney             +61 2 9009 0688

Australia              1 800 651 017     

Austria, Vienna +43 1 2530 21750             

Austria  0 800 006 088     

Bahrain, Manama            +973 1619 9392 

Bahrain 8000 4811           

Belgium, Brussels             +32 2 404 0657  

Belgium                0800 39675         

Botswana            002 698 003 001 802        

Brazil, Porto Alegre         +55 51 4063 8328             

Brazil, Rio de Janeiro       +55 21 4063 5267             

Brazil, Sao Paulo               +55 11 3163 0498             

Bulgaria, Sofia    +359 2 491 7542

Bulgaria                00 800 118 4451

Canada, Montreal            +1 514 669 5883

Canada, Toronto              +1 416 915 3225

Canada 1 877 252 4916  

Chile, Santiago  +56 2 599 4973  

Chile      123 0020 6704   

China, Beijing     +86 10 5904 5002             

China, Northern Region                10 800 650 0630

China, Southern Region                10 800 265 2601

China     +400 120 0519   

Colombia             01 800 518 1236

Croatia  0800 222 228      

Cyprus, Nicosia +357 2200 7933 

Cyprus  800 964 63          

Czech Republic, Prague +420 228 882 890             

Czech Republic  800 701 387        

Denmark, Copenhagen +45 32 71 16 49 

Denmark             80 701 624          

Dominican Republic        1 888 751 4814  

Estonia, Tallinn  +372 622 6444   

Estonia 8000 111 358      

Finland, Helsinki               +358 9 2310 1631             

Finland 0 800 770 120     

France, Paris      +33 1 70 70 17 77              

France  0800 946 522      

France  0811 657 737      

Germany, Frankfurt        +49 69 2222 10764           

Germany, Munich           +49 89 7104 24682           

Germany             0800 588 9331   

Greece, Athens                +30 21 1181 3805             

Greece 00800 128 573   

Hong Kong          +852 3051 2732 

Hong Kong          800 905 843        

Hungary, Budapest         +36 1 778 9215  

Iceland 800 9901              

India, Bangalore               +91 80 6127 5055             

India, Delhi         +91 11 6641 1356             

India, Mumbai   +91 22 6150 1743             

India      000 800 1007 702              

Indonesia            001 803 657 916

Ireland, Dublin  +353 1 247 6192

Ireland  1 800 937 869     

Ireland  1890 907 125      

Israel, Tel Aviv   +972 3 763 0750

Israel     1809 212 927      

Italy, Milan          +39 02 3600 9839             

Italy, Rome         +39 06 4523 6623             

Italy       800 145 988        

Japan, Osaka      +81 6 4560 2101

Japan, Tokyo      +81 3 4560 1261

Japan    0120 639 800      

Jordan  800 22813           

Kazakhstan         8800 333 4239   

Latvia, Riga          +371 6778 2556 

Latvia    8000 4247           

Lithuania, Vilnius              +370 5205 5165 

Lithuania              8800 31308         

Luxembourg      +352 2487 1454 

Luxembourg      800 27071           

Malaysia,Kuala Lumpur +60 3 7723 7221

Malaysia              1 800 806 547     

Malta    800 62208           

Mauritius             802 033 0006      

Mexico, Mexico City       +52 55 1207 7362             

Mexico 001 800 514 8609              

Netherlands, Amsterdam            +31 20 716 8291

Netherlands       0800 265 8462   

New Zealand, Auckland                +64 9 929 1760  

New Zealand     0800 885 018      

Norway, Oslo     +47 21 50 27 61 

Norway                800 510 67          

Oman    800 73655           

Pakistan               008 009 004 4138              

Panama                00 800 226 9817

Peru      0800 54 762        

Philippines          1 800 1651 0726

Poland, Warsaw               +48 22 212 0699

Poland  00 800 121 3995

Portugal, Lisbon                +351 21 781 0275             

Portugal               800 784 425        

Puerto Rico         1 855 693 8763  

Romania, Bucharest        +40 21 529 3917

Romania              0800 895 807      

Russia, Moscow                +7 495 213 17 63               

Russia   810 800 2106 2012           

Saudi Arabia       800 844 4276      

Singapore            +65 6654 9828   

Singapore            800 186 5015      

Slovakia, Bratislava          +421 2 3300 2610             

Slovakia                0800 001 825      

Slovenia, Ljubljana          +386 1 888 8261

Slovenia               0800 80923         

South Africa,Johannesberg         +27 11 019 7009

South Africa       0800 984 011      

South Korea, Seoul         +82 2 3483 1901

South Korea       007 986 517 503

Spain, Barcelona               +34 93 800 0782

Spain, Madrid    +34 91 769 9443

Spain     800 600 279        

Sweden, Stockholm        +46 8 5033 6514

Sweden               0200 883 436      

Switzerland, Geneva      +41 22 592 7995

Switzerland, Zurich          +41 43 456 9248

Switzerland        0800 740 352      

Taiwan, Taipei   +886 2 2656 7307             

Taiwan  00 806 651 935  

Thailand               001 800 658 151

Turkey  00800 448 825 462           

UAE       8000 444 1726   

UK, Belfast          +44 28 9595 0013             

UK, Edinburgh   +44 13 1460 1125             

UK, London        +44 20 3364 5639             

UK, Reading       +44 11 8990 3053             

UK          0800 368 0635   

UK          0845 351 2778   

Ukraine                0800 500 254      

Uruguay               0004 019 0509   

Venezuela          0 800 100 8510  

Vietnam               120 651 66          

Some say even in Germany spring is finally here. It is a special feeling after a long cold snowy winter.
High time to announce the new SAP Mentors, the new cubs that we added today to the SAP Mentor Wolfpack*. It is a tough balancing act to get a good mixture of area of expertise, region, gender, customer/partner, ...
Before you go down the list, you may want to check the document describing the foundation that the SAP Mentor Magic is built upon. The SAP Mentors jointly developed and agreed on these guiding principles and they played a major role in selecting the new SAP Mentors.
Inclusion is one of the principles that we try to live up to every day. When SAP Mentors David Hull and Matt Harding came up with the idea to make music and jam at TechEd, we deliberately didn't call it the SAP Mentor Jam Band,. We named it the SAP Jam Band and we linked it with Marilyn Pratt drum circle idea that evening. Our goal was to engage as many people as possible to be part of making music, singing and dancing and.we all had a blast.
Please be inspired, even if, or especially if, you are not an SAP Mentor, you are always welcomed to run with the Mentor Wolfpack, be part of the passion and make a difference in the larger SAP community. It is the greatest to pool your resources with other passionate SAP experts and move the needle in a positive direction for the the larger SAP community.
Like the circle of life when new SAP Mentors are introduced others are transitioning over to become SAP Mentor Alumni: Vijay Vijayasankar even blogged about it. Michelle Crapo, Scott Wall, Siegfried Szameitat, Paulo Roberto Da Silva, Arun Balla, David Hull, Dagfinn Parnas, Greg Chase, Fabio Fernandez have also decided to become SAP Mentor Alumni. Arun for example has just quit his job to focus fully on his startup and I can't wait to find out more about what he is working on and hope we can help him to be successful. His focus has shifted, but he still feels passionate about the SAP community. With being an SAP Alumnus he will continue to have a close connection to us.
Please join me in thanking these amazing people for all the things that they have done and continue to do for the SAP community at large.
The SAP Mentor Twitter account with ~11.5K followers is a surprisingly popular one in the SAP space. It is following only active SAP Mentors. But don't worry, if you want to continue to follow all SAP Mentors we created a couple of lists:
Active SAP Mentors List of all tweeting SAP Mentors. High signal conversation around everything SAP and beyond.
SAP Mentor Alumni Twitter handles of all SAP Mentor Alumni

All SAP Mentors List of all SAPMentors, Current Mentors and the Alumni

Without further ado. Drumroll* please. Take a deep breath and:
Welcome the new SAP Mentors Spring 2013
Country: India Company: NTT Data
Kumud is an HCM Time Management, ABAP and Workflow expert. With a personal interest in social media and eagerness to connect with people, she has built a strong network within the SAP Community and loves to learn and meet new people on SCN. I actually did meet her last year at TechEd in Bangalore. It was way to short, but she was radiating passion and I could see the joy of sharing in the corner of her eyes. Super happy that she is joinung us. SAP Mentors in India are often very mobile and often to other coutries for extended periods of time, but she promised to be in India for a while and continue to be a force in further developing the SAP community there. More about Kumud you can find in her SCN Member of the month blog.
Country: Netherlands Company: Ciber Nederland B.V.
No one got more mentor nominations than Roel this time. From his nominations: "Roel is one of those truly amazing guys. Always ready to help you out. Very passionate and up to date with newest developments. There have been quite a lot of innovative idea's initiated and developed by himself. He's wanting, able and very capable in sharing his idea's in the SCN communities and lots of events like SAP Inside tracks Netherlands or Germany. Roel is a guy who loves to share his knowledge. He is open minded, loves a good discussion, really helpful to people who need help (work and non-work related) and an overall good guy."  Roel is Principal SAP NetWeaver Consultant. An SAP NetWeaver enthusiast with extensive programming experience and knowledge.Thinking out of the box and achieving the impossible is what satisfies him most. Specialized in web development in the areas of CRM (WebUI Framework) and SRM (BSP/WDA). Currently focused on mobile development and social media.
Joyce ButlerCountry: USA Company: Cameron International
From her nominations: Joyce runs two ASUG Influence Councils, assists ASUG sessions at SAP TechEd, she is a long-time ASUG volunteer and mentor in all ASUG matters. She is working for a customer and believes in the value of community and volunteering. 
From her bio: It has been my privilege to be an ASUG Volunteer since 2001. I am currently the SIG Chair for Analysis
and BEx, but I have also been a program chair. I've been involved in influence councils for the EDW, BEx, Analysis and now Design Studio. I've spoken at the SAP TechEd, SAP Insider, and ASUG Annual Conferences.
  • Led over 14 full life cycle SAP BI projects within both supply chain and finance
  • Since 1999, implementing SAP Business Intelligence decision support applications for use in financial and supply chain reporting and analysis
  • Balanced blend of supply chain, SAP and project management skills with an extensive track record of business consultancy and analysis
  • International Paper experience spans multiple divisions and corporate staff organizations
  • Finance experience spans 10 years and various positions at the corporate, sector and mill levels with responsibilities for analysis, capital improvement project reviews, forecasting, planning and budgeting
Oh and she loves her SEC Football
Country: USA Company:
Julien is strengthening the functional or solution side of the SAP Mentor Wolfpack. From his nominations: Julien is out there actively involved in user groups helping out customers and partners.Having a Controlling expert who can speak to HANA directly and analytics as well plays right into SAP's future direction. From his bio: Born and raised in France, I joined SAP Labs France as an ABAP developer in SAP Financials from 2001 to 2007. I have now moved into consulting and the US with Alta Via Consulting, a niche player in the most complex projects related to controlling, planning, forecasting and costing. As a chairman of the managerial accounting group at ASUG and speaker at multiple conferences, I try to bridge the gap between very demanding customers and SAP solution management and development. Join us in the ASUG influence groups ;o)  Area of expertise: Passion has no borders. I took part in complex controlling, activity-based costing and product costing projects around the globe and across industries (high-tech, automotive, consumer products, heavy machinery, transportation, etc.). I am the go-to person for anything related to SAP PDCE (Product Design Cost Estimate) and SAP NMA (Net Margin Analysis).
Country: Singapore Company SAP
Together with Jansi Rani he is really making a huge difference to the SAP community in Singapore. They have just started to promote the second SAP Inside Track happening on the 8th of June. Join them. Others may know him for winning the SAP DemoJam a couple of years back with the white board in a pocket: InnoBoard. When you talk to him, you just want to role up your sleeves and join him to built one of his crazy ideas. From his bio: Dr Marek Kowalkiewicz is a Research Program Manager at SAP Research where he heads the User Experience Research Program. His main areas of interest include user experience, information retrieval and filtering, web information extraction, web engineering, enterprise services, service oriented architecture and business process management. He has published 5 book chapters and over 40 research papers in journals and proceedings of international conferences.
Country: Brazil Company: SAP
Henrique Pinto mentor's connection in South America has taken a great opportunity at HP, but for a while already Marlo ha been a strong link for SAP Mentors into SAP Brazil and beyond. He was the driving force behind an SAP Mentor panel at the last SAP Forum. He has also helped organize the SAP Inside Tracks for years. From his nominations: Before joining SAP he worked for a SAP Partner for several large customers and has a strong network that we can use to strengthen SAP here in Brazil. Today Marlo is one of the most engaged person in SAP community in Brazil, always interested in spreading the SCN through lectures in events such as São Paulo and SAP Forum SAP Inside Track.From his bio: Works as Solution Architect, BPX and Mobile Expert. Tries to stay update with SAP's Innovation Edge. Is part of the SAPcast Brasil initiative a Blog and Podcast about SAP Technology in Portuguese.
Twitter: @marlosimon
Country: USA Company: Lithium Technology
As he is an independent application developer in the mobile space, I can't wait to have him share his expertise and knowledge even more. From his nomination: He has built a reputation in the Enterprise Mobility space by speaking on various development and implementation methodologies at a range of conferences. Successful exit from a startup in the social media space that he founded. From his bio: Paul Aschmann has been designing, developing and implementing innovative IT solutions for over 10 years. His experience has assisted companies in driving revenue, managing operations and reducing costs. Paul is currently the Technical Manager and Founder of Lithium Labs, a enterprise mobility startup focused on developing engaging and creative mobile apps for a seamless, integrated approach to 'enterprise everywhere'.
Country: Australia Company: SAP
Richard is a one man social media power house for SAP Business One. I posted an B1 improvement suggestion in our Idea Place. Within 24 hours Richard not only was able to place it on the B1 road map, it will come in one of the next releases, but he also posted an elegant hack video workaround in the B1 Academy [Detilas in my blog post]. We all can learn from his responsiveness to user input. Bio: After running his own Small Business ERP Consulting company for 12+ years, he joined Great Plains Software and then Microsoft in a variety of roles from Channel Management, Consulting, Support, Marketing and
Product Management.  Joined SAP in August 2003 on SAP Business One. 
Country: Netherlands Company: Logica CGI in Nederland
From the nomination: Ronald absorbs new technology, combines it with other (new) technology and comes with practical use cases to explain the usability. He shares his experiences on SDN and at events like SAP TechEd or VNSG (Dutch SAP User Group) Check out his How to create an app during your lunch break post, it is amazing. From his Bio: Experienced SAP consultant with over 15 years of experience with complex financial processes as well as system development. My areas of expertise are in the SAP HANA, SAP Business Warehouse, Business Objects, SEM BCS and Financial and Controlling modules of SAP R/3. I am a Principal Business Intelligence Consultant at CGI, which likes to see his extensive finance knowledge as his strong point next to his broad system knowledge.
Country: Australia Company:
From the nominations: I have met Simon (at conferences), and I know from a personality perspective he fits the criteria for a SAP Mentor. Very curious, intelligent, and happy to help others. Simon is a long-time contributor to SCN.  He does so clearly because it is in his nature to contribute, not because he has some hidden agenda to be (for instance) a SAP Mentor. In addition to his SCN blog and discussion contributions (which are substantial), he also helps make sense of SAP's mobile and user interface strategies on other channels, such as on InsideSAP (a localSAP publication). Bio: Simon is a certified consultant with an excellent reputation among SAP Customers. He’s been active on SCN since its beginning, sharing expertise on Enterprise Portal, ABAP, Mobility and Security. Simon was also SCN Member of the Month.
Country: Great Britain Company: University of Warwick.
From the nomination: I've met Steve a few times during conferences in the UK and TechEd abroad. He is a knowledgeable and courteous person, which always finds the right way to apply critique whilst striking the right tone. If there is someone with a thirst to learn more things about SAP then it's him! His persona would be a very good fit with the Mentors. Bio: Steve is an SAP Technical Manager at the University of Warwick, UK, who specializes in technical architecture design, Basis/SAP NetWeaver and GRC. He also was an SCN Member of the Month. Him being an SAP Mentor now, I am sure the University Alliance program will finally also come to Warwick, which would be amazing.
Country: Spain Company: IBM
Carsten is interested in win/win/win situation for our customers, partners and SAP. Check out one of his latest blog posts Is it Time to have an NBSSC on SAP HANA ? covering exatly that. Oh and he is the first SAP Mentor in Spain, hope the next one is actually a Spaniard.  From the nomination: Carsten works for the IBM hardware group and is driving HANA forward both in terms of IBM's hardware propositions, social media and blogging around HANA and presence at conferences. He's well integrated with the community and already doing the right things. Bio: Business Profession, passionate with IT, focused on Sales in the SAP Environment since 1997. Companies I have worked for in the past are: OpenText (IXOS SOFTWARE), Ariba, Internet Security Systems (ISS) and IBM. Since 2011 I am focusing on SAP HANA from an infrastructure point of view at IBM. Covering Spain, Portugal Greece and Israel.
Country: USA Company: Elster
Jelena Perfiljeva is a long-time, knowledgeable SCN member who specializes in ABAP, SD, MM and FI. She brings a great personality to our community. From the nominations: Active, constructive participation in the discussion around the new SCN (even before there was a new SCN). Vocal community advocate for a better SCN, both tool-wise and community-wise. Mostly active in the forums, but is just re-emerging as a blogger with some beautiful posts (smart, empathetic, funny) and comments to other discussions. Bio: SAP Technical Analyst at Elster. She is the SCN Member of the month of April.

Please join me in welcoming the new SAP Mentors. We have scheduled 2 public SAP Mentor webinars where they will introduce themselves and share something from their expertise with us. First one is this Thursday 2nd of May 9am PST and the second one is 4pm PST on Monday 6th of May. Link to SAP Connect Session: https://sap.na.pgiconnect.com/sapmm +1-866-312-7353,,3782244518 Participant Passcode:  378 224 4518 See you all there.
* [To all the spelling and grammar Bees: I know: Wolfpack should be 2 words and probably lower cade. It just looks better this way. Take it as a hat tip to the German language, where all words are joined together. Get over it or get off my blog post ;-) ]

... and Richard Duffy a genius.


You sometimes here the pronouncement from our executives, that this is a new SAP, more agile, responsive and delighting our customers and I often cringe when I hear it, being from the school of don't pronounce it, live it.


Well, check out what the folks around SAP Business One are doing.


Yesterday the SAP Mentors had a public webinar organized by Tim Guest with Richard Duffy around the latest features of SAP Business One.

Check out the replay of that interesting session


In it Richard told us that because of lean/agile development methodology the SAP Business One team are able to deliver 30% more functionality than originally planned. In my 25 years of being in the software business I have never heard of something like that. He also shared that they are in Ramp Up with the latest release right now, the one he introduced in the webinar. Some hand selected customers are running it already. There is a certain threshold of open bugs that you need to be below for an SAP product to go to general availability. Apparently they never even had enough open bugs to cross that threshold. They could go out of Ramp Up now, but because of promises to keep it open for a certain number of weeks, they are continuing with the Ramp Up. .


Richard has also created a Khan Accademy style SAP Business One Academy where he is adding about 2-3 videos on how to not only use B1, but also how to become an SAP Business One partner. He also covers in his videos how to be successful as a B1 partner. He has invited everyone to add their own videos too. If I wanted to make a name for myself in the B1 world, I would be all over that opportunity. This is the education of the future right here.


He came into the mentor webinar yesterday with a set of slides and said, you don't need to write anything down, I shared the slides on SlideShare and I taped me presenting and posted it on YouTube already. Richard is on top of things.


He also shared that about 20-30% of the improvements in B1 came in through SAP's Idea Place, and they are just getting started.


Years ago my friend and former colleague Peter Ebert had the idea to have a jump off point to something like Idea Place from every screen of an SAP system. Your moment of inspiration comes when you are working with the system and it would be cool to capture these ideas on the spot. The likelihood for the idea to be posted is so much higher if the Idea Place is only a click away. I wondered whether that has been implemented already in B1. Not yet, but people on the call liked the idea, so I posted it in the Idea Place, while still in the webinar.


To my delight it got 4 up votes and a couple of comments right away. The power of the Idea Place at work.


But then the real magic happened. Richard forwarded the idea to the lead Business One development manager and he agreed that it is a good improvement and will be in one of the next releases, which Richard reported/commented back. SAP is not promising when, as we don't like to be sued for promises made, but judging by the current pace of development I am fairly confident it will be soon.


Richard didn't stop here. Business One is easily expandable, which makes it so powerful in the market. With not a lot of effort you can add a field to a drop down menu on every screen of B1 that links to the B1 Area of Idea Place.


Richard created a little video showing how to do exactly that. More or less an elegant hack for the time until the functionality will be in the standard.




In summary:

  • SAP Business One's latest release is coming out with more features than originally promised
  • It is so stable that it could go out of Ramp-Up already
  • 20-30% of their enhancements came through Idea-Place suggestions
  • A feature enhancement went from suggestion to being on the roadmap within 24 hours
  • A video that shows an elegant hack on how you can add that functionality to your current B1 system has been posted to the SAP Business One Academy for everyone to implement too.


I am floored. This is the new agile,responsive, customer delighting SAP in action.


With a hat tip to William Gipson: The new SAP is here, it is just not yet evenly distributed.


Thank you Richard Duffy for showing us the way.

Is there a better day to ask for SAP Mentor Nominations than Community Manager Appreciation Day cmad ? After all most SAP Mentors have their own group of followers or a topic/space in the SAP field that they are actively managing.


Today when active community managers are celebrated and you think about these special people that you look up to and may even be your mentors in the SAP space, let us know by nominating them to become new SAP Mentors.


Once nominated we will contact them to make sure that they are interested and then there will be an internal selection process and we will announce the new SAP Mentors mid April about a month before Sapphire in Orlando.


Just posted the SAP Mentor Magic Foundation document which lists the Principles upon which the SAP Mentor magic is built.

Current status of that document copied right underneath here, just to ensure your candidate has what it takes. Passion is key, everything else is derived from that.

Drum Circle SAP TechEd 2012 Las Vegas Ali III.jpg


Lead by Example

  • Be humble. Be helpful. Show respect and empathy in your dealings with everyone.
  • As an SAP Mentor you are expected to be a peer mentor.
    You are not better or worse than anyone else. Help people overcome problems by sharing positive examples.
  • Be mindful that you are a representative of the SAP Mentors and conduct yourself accordingly.
  • Own the right to be the voice of the community by being more active than most.
  • Surprise us.
  • Don’t take yourself too serious.


  • Share the love.
  • It's the spark that ignites the people around us.

Constructive in Your Criticisms

  • Base your criticism on facts.
  • Voice your criticism directly to SAP first.
  • Share it with other SAP Mentors in the private space.
    You will gain new insights and your case will be stronger.
  • Give SAP the chance to react.
  • Afterwards you owe it to the community to voice it publicly.
  • Criticism ideally comes with a suggestion for a practical solution.

No Culture of Entitlement

  • As an SAP Mentor you are entitled to nothing from SAP - not even a shirt.
  • As an SAP Mentor you are entitled to nothing from anyone who is not SAP.
  • Be aware that Mark Finnern begs, borrows and steals each year just to get complimentary entry to SAP TechEd.
    These tickets are not a right, they are a gift. And just because you got the gift last year does not mean you will get it next year.
  • Be aware that SAP execs meet with us because they see value and want to - not because they have to.
    Show respect by being there and be present.
  • You are the voice of the community. Be active to know what it is.


  • Get out and talk to people!
  • Share experiences with all.
  • Respect opinion of all.
  • Make the whole greater than the sum of the parts.
  • All public SAP Mentor events gain from the inclusion of non SAP Mentors.

SAP Mentors who are SAP Employees

  • You are the link of all SAP Mentors in your field into SAP.
  • Make that link and their voice come alive within SAP and beyond.


* Picture by Ali Samieivafa


Filter Blog

By author:
By date:
By tag: