Senior Vice President,
Global Marketing Services,
Early in my career, when I was an events consultant for Sony Corporation,
I happened to witness a turning point in the consumer electronics revolution
— the introduction of the Sony Walkman.
The most interesting and innovative thing
about the Walkman was that it filled a need most consumers didn’t
know they had. After all, who would have thought a cassette player and
a pair of headphones — no speakers, no recording capability —
could make a difference in people’s daily lives? But within months
of the Walkman’s introduction, joggers, commuters, teenagers, and
just about everybody else were sporting headphones and singing along to
tunes no one else could hear.
The ability to anticipate customer needs
is the hallmark of successful companies. True innovators know their customers
so well that they can imagine whole new ways for them to live and work.
And that’s one reason SAP hosts SAPPHIRE every year — to learn
more about you, understand how you work, and help you imagine new ways
technology can transform your business.
When planning SAPPHIRE, we devote time and resources to understanding
what will benefit you. We work with industry analysts to define key economic
and business issues facing each of the industries we serve. When these
challenges are complex — as they almost always are — we bring
together business and technology experts who can master the details and
articulate viable solutions.
We also investigate the new technologies
and trends that interest you most and we find creative thinkers —
both inside and outside SAP — who can help you visualize emerging
scenarios for new technologies and opportunities.
Finally, at SAPPHIRE, we deliver all the
resources you need to discover effective new solutions. For example, you
can hear a panel of CEOs define their business strategies, have coffee
with the chief technologist of a Fortune 500 company, and sit down with
an SAP systems engineer to discuss a specific software feature —
all in a single day. You can also meet other customers who can share their
implementation experiences, and industry experts who can tell you precisely
what to expect in terms of ROI. And SAPPHIRE remains the only place where
you can see, firsthand, the entire depth and breadth of the SAP product
Answering the Hard Questions
If we do our jobs right, SAPPHIRE becomes a three-day business and technology
think tank where SAP can work with you to answer important questions such
- Which technology strategies are successful companies adopting? How
and why are these strategies successful?
- What implementation approaches work best? Which are least expensive?
Which are most practical?
- How are markets and industries evolving? What do big suppliers want?
How much will it cost to gain access to global markets?
- Are there strategies and business processes from other industries
that could benefit my company?
- What’s the best way to evaluate an SCM, CRM, HR, or financials
solution? Which benchmarks mean the most? Which features matter most
for my industry?
In short, we believe our determination
to work closely with you on real business issues will spur innovation
that benefits the entire SAP community.
I look forward to seeing you at SAPPHIRE
Orlando this June 16-18.