It was my great fortune to attend SuccessConnect 2016 held in Las Vegas August 30-31. This was my third SuccessConnect as I was able to attend in 2009 and 2012. Attending every three or four years gives me a fresh perspective especially since I attended the first two events as a customer and this last one as a SAP SuccessConnect partner and sponsor.
Energy. That was my first and lasting impression of SuccessConnect 2016. I felt Energy coming from everyone—customers! SAP SuccessConnect attendees! Partners/Vendors! It wasn’t a disconcerting energy but one that was contagiously inspiring and motivating. I felt it and I just wanted to know more. I wanted to meet people and listen to them and hear about their hopes and experiences. I wanted to learn more about SAP SuccessFactors.
Fortunately, it seemed many others felt the same way and I engaged in spontaneous conversations that sparked connections and generous sharing of introductions, ideas, and questions.
Maturity. I also found that those whom I encountered had a depth of implementation maturity that I hadn’t experienced in 2009 and 2012. Of course this made logical sense…with each year there are large numbers of implementations of SAP SuccessFactors. But it was the pride behind these numbers that struck me. “Have you implemented?”, I’d ask as a conversation opener. Faces before me would light up with a smile and in a quick proud reply cite the modules implemented and the dates they went live! And behind that listing was the echo of the thought and effort that went into making that a reality. And I would smile back having shared that challenging and satisfying experience of a successful implementation.
Synergy. It was in the breakout sessions and the keynote addresses that I experienced a heighten sense of synergy.
In the breakout sessions I felt that those in the room were supporting each other as we reacted and responded to what the presenters were sharing. But it was the questions from fellow participants in the question and answer portions that showed how many had shared experiences and needs.
But the ultimate experience of Synergy were the responses of those leading the sessions. I saw many a SAP SuccessFactors representative smile at the challenge and show how prepared each was to receive concerns and ideas and respond positively accepting challenges and telling us what was already planned ahead.
Interspersed with the breakout sessions were strong keynote addresses. Two in particular stood out as acknowledging the professional maturity of their audience while inspiring energy and a room-level sense of synergy. I’m talking about the closing keynote on the first day with Mike Ettling’s and Bill McDermont’s conversation followed up by Irving “Magic” Johnson and then the mid-day keynote on the second day with Arianna Huffington and Jennifer Morgan, president of SAP North America.
Bill McDermont, CEO of SAP, can tell a story…several stories in fact. I adore a good storyteller. They transport you to the scene, they generously share their emotions so you can feel it too…and they transform you after they are done sharing. Bill took us along on his first “real” job and helped us remember what it felt like to start at the bottom and, with enthusiasm and a total lack of self-pity, envision your way through layers of success. How is that not like implementing a full suite of SuccessFactors?!
Magic was pure magic with his personal stories from junior high through creating inspirational urban businesses.
And my dear Arianna Huffington was so real. She inspired by embracing her humanity and the humanity in each of us that is too often denied in the workplace. She gave it a name, “Thrive”, and inspired us to support each other in self-care. Yep. She was all about: Maturity. Energy-management, and Synergy of support. She embraced, embodied, and encouraged what I was experiencing in our two days together.
Best of all, I got to take all this with me back to work at HRIZONS. Want to talk about this? About Energy, Maturity and Synergy?
Send me a message or give me a call.
Ellen Loughrin, PMP
Manager, Service Delivery at HRIZONS