SAP Community Cares

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

ESME Team Member Meetups - Accidentally on Purpose

I feel a bit like Woody Allen's Zelig with the uncanny ability to insert oneself into some exceedingly interesting (historic) social environments as a famous nobody. It's like having a passport to be an official "fly on the wall" of some fascinating conversations. You get to be present, observe and on occasion document and record. That's the way I'll approach Office 2.0 this week and that seems to be my experience heretofore with the ESME folks.

“Enterprise Social Media Experiment (ESME) is a Web 2.0 application that permits social network-based communication among, between, and outside organizational boundaries. ESME draws its development team from the SAP Community and includes both BPX'ers and business people with an interest in learning how social networks, the media they generate and business processes can be usefully co-mingled to deliver innovative solutions to old world problems.” (Darren Hague, Richard Hirsch and others in the SAP Community Contributor Corner wiki)

When Dick Hirsch began to flesh out and realize the original BPX community project, it was obvious that he was a quintessential or model SAP business process expert: a professional with deep SAP technical acumen, experience of business modeling tools and process improvement methodologies, as well as an adept story teller with a keen journalistic eye and language.

The ESME conversationalists list (those engaged in the collaborative conversation about ESME) looks like a “whose who” of some top SAP Community Network members.

So being the declared online yenta I am (which is a grandmotherly busybody), I wanted to know more about those virtual members I haven’t yet had the pleasure to meet.

I’m fortunate to go around the world these next few weeks and I’ll be rubbing shoulders with almost all of the ESME folks, some by purpose and design and a few, quite serendipitously (like in the case of David Pollack who happens to be with me this week at Office 2.0). There are even a few folks I got to meet-up with recently at their invitation, having nothing to do with ESME whatsoever. Such is the case with Jen Robinson and Kirsten Gay who I met with 2 weeks ago in the US SAP headquarters in Newtown Square when I was invited to meet with the team of Natalie Hanson an "anthropologist working in the business world" and Kirsten and Jen's manager.

Kirsten and Jen happen to be members of the ESME team.

I was interested in the skills they bring to the table and their internal portal work and particularly in their focus on the very human side of technology.

Here's their brief bios:

S Kirsten Gay is the Manager of User Experience at SAP America and experienced in user interface design, design team management, integration of design deliverables with market demands, and strategic development of design services for corporations, educational institutions and private clients.

Jen Robinson, currently a lead in SAP's Global Business Knowledge Management Competency Center and an MBA student at NYU Stern whose professional interests include IT strategy, emerging technologies, entertainment, and new media.

Attending Office 2.0

Here I am in San Francisco attempting to live into the concepts I'll be hearing more about tomorrow at Office 2.0. That means using Google Calendar and scheduling my sessions by looking into the wiki agenda and working with everything via my browser. For someone (me) complaining endlessly about email overload and struggling to make sure I at least know of and attempt to understand and use the latest and greatest enterprise collaboration tools, the next few days should be very interesting, to say the least. I'm hoping I can tweet some of my impressions and I'll be using my colleague, Craig Cmehil's Eventtrack to organize my contents around the event and tag them with #o208 (thanks Craig) .

I do feel a little out of my element. Granni isn't the fastest wiki markup maven in the west (and I'm in the west now having arrived here this evening from NYC) and I really will be itching to see how others tame the beast with Office productivity untools. One of my goals: to look over shoulders and see how others are getting their collaboration work done. I think the case studies will be enlightening.

Oh, and I hope to finally meet a number of twitter pals and see how face-to-face corresponds to online interactions. Was really hoping to meet Gia Lyons, my heroine of "collaboration made easy" assets, but I don't see her on the roster. Her new colleague, Sam Lawerence will be there though and I will finally get to meet Oliver Marks as well.

My biggest goal will actually be to invigorate my understanding of how to facilitate adoption for folks like myself, perhaps a slightly different demography from the 30's something, hard-core geeks I engage with in my SDN world for whom every technological gizmo is perfectly intuitive and if you don't "get it" immediately, you are some dumb **s n00b.

Wish me well. Want to bring some fresh energy to the BPX tables of SAP TechEd the following week in Vegas and recharge my batteries that have run low from working in my isolated cell of a home office. Having put the accident, summer and Teched prepping behind me, I'm raring to go.