SAP Community Cares

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A Community Advocate Thanking Her Community

Today marks a personal “time to rejoice” as I have the honor of being nominated a member of the newly created Advisory Board of Somesso , a “recognized neutral platform for corporate stakeholders to explore, share and apply the tools and thinking necessary to benefit from the potential of social media.” You can hear founder Arjen Strijker, speaking of Somesso in this podcast). One could say my participation in Somesso began with a serendipitous meeting with blogger/analyst David Terrar, during the 2006 SAP Sapphire Event. Three years later, David introduced me to Arjen and Somesso, and got me linked up with some very excellent thinkers and movers and shakers.

But the truth is I owe this recognition entirely to, my much loved SCN community, and wish to extend a tremendous thanks to each member for the community engagement experience provided me daily. It is the quality of this participation that gives me any credence as a community advocate.

Arjen Strijker has proved a “class act” in creating corporate social media events in Europe combining top talent speakers (list too long to mention here) with classy think tank venues in places like London, Zurich and Barcelona. While I was an American Evangelist in London at Somesso last May, ranting about Leading a Stakeholder Community, I was fortunate to meet Stowe Boyd (stoweboyd and the /messengers) a fellow ranter who spoke of: Unmarketing and the ‘Webful Brand’

“If brands are to have any juice in this new online future, those that are advocating them will have to drop all the mass media shouting, and move past the ‘markets are conversations’ trivialization of the web, too. Their representatives will have to roll up their sleeves and do something, shoulder to shoulder, aspiring to make something in the world, collectively with us, not just selling us the parts.”
That was in May 2009. In November 2009 I returned again to Somesso in Zurich where friend and fellow SAP Mentor, Dennis Howlett, caught me speaking about How to Kill an Online Community . I also met there with Anne McCrossan (Visceral Business) who spoke about Collaboration in Finance. I found Anne a powerful and articulate speaker in her own right and learned she is also an active member of, Seth’s Godin’s invitation-only online community.

So now a year after meeting Stowe Boyd, I found myself today in Stowe’s Social Business Edge event in my own, NYC. Because of the international #ashtag crisis, one of my other favorite Somesso speakers, Lee Bryant, needed to be teleported in from London to do his session in video format. I’m looking forward to further postings around Stowe’s speakers today, but you can see many of Arjen’s Somesso contents in slideshares and video recordings at

Anyone interested in online collaboration and the future of communities of practice would do well to take some time to listen to practitioners, community advocates, and critics discuss the challenges. I found it very inspiring that today at the event, ZDnet Dion Hinchcliffe commented to another participant, that you, SCN, are the living, breathing instance of what other communities aspire to be, in terms of passion and presence.


  1. Anonymous1:06 AM

    Thanks for the excellent post, quite inspirational! Kudos

  2. "not just to speak, but also to listen" --
    powerful, strong words. i love how you spread the strength of listening - a skill too often forgotten today

    congratulations, marilyn!