Interview with Andy
Andy is 55 years old, married and has two boys aged 12 and 14. For almost five years now, he has been doing what he "burns for", as he says himself. Together with a colleague, he leads the SAP Excellence presales team. I talked to him about what matters as an SAP consultant.
Jochen: Andy, you have been working in the SAP and IT environment for a long time. What is it that appeals to you?
Andy: That's a good question, to this day I don't see myself as an "IT guy." I enjoy working with people. It motivates me to pull them along and show them solutions to problems. That could probably be in another industry, too. But working with SAP is something special. For me, in the SAP world, "You can't have it, you can't have it!" The appeal is in finding solutions. Implementing a complex customer requirement, knowing the possibilities of a standard software and exhausting them to the last.
Jochen: That doesn't sound like a routine. Is there anything like a daily work routine for you?
Andy: No. Every day is different. Sometimes I sit in my home office - like today - and work on issues related to current cases before or after the case. The next day I start early by getting into the car between five and six o'clock and driving two hours to the customer. There I show the possibilities of mapping the customer's business processes with our solution in SAP. After that, it's usually back home or to the hotel to drive to another customer the next day.
Jochen: Do you actually know a good comsultant joke?
Andy: Hmmm, maybe "the joke with the shepherd".
Jochen: The consultant from the joke comes along with an expensive sports car and elaborate but completely pointless analysis procedures - to count a flock of sheep ...
Andy: ... and thus fulfills all the clichés, but of course is not optimally positioned 😉 A good consultant can do one thing first and foremost - listen well and actively, understand the customer and recognize his problem.
A good consulant, like a small child, constantly asks "Why....?"
This is one of the key points of a good consultant. He should also enjoy being a service provider and at the same time be able to talk to the customer at eye level. Being a people person and being able to make situational judgments is also an advantage.
Jochen: What about technical knowledge?
Andy: First and foremost, expertise should lie in knowing the business processes and procedures in a company and the industry. Secondarily, a consultant must know how these processes can be mapped in SAP. Experience is of course an advantage here; our customers now primarily ask the question, "How do others do it?"
Jochen: Hugo Boss, Beiersdorf AG, Freenet Group. You worked in many well-known companies as an IT & SAP specialist before you came to us. You've been with All for One for 13 years. What keeps you with us?
Andy: We have the "All for One Spirit". Now please don't ask what that is, that's beyond the scope of this interview. As a company, we are simply different from others - and that's a good thing.
Jochen: Can you be a bit more specific about that?
Andy: One big difference between us and many other consulting firms is our broad portfolio. As a "OneStopShop", we can fulfill all of a company's requirements, from process consulting to the ERP track to the cloud and Microsoft applications. It's all there with us. And the coolest part is that you'll get help from everyone. No matter who you ask - there's an answer and you get help right away.
Jochen: So you've found the right "home" for you?
Andy: Yes, I am "at home" at All for One. I do exactly the work that I do best, I have great colleagues, some of whom are now also private friends. I work "when and where I want" - at home, in Filderstadt, in Memmingen or sometimes in Munich, Heidelberg, even a "workation" is now possible, as long as it stays in the EU area. So I can organize my work and even go to sports or shopping during working hours. The management is behind me, our team is successful in what we do and this is rewarded and recognized. Our offices in Filderstadt are among the most modern you could wish for. I think I could go on raving about that for quite a while. At home at All for One is really more than just an advertising slogan.
Jochen: Are there also things that bother you about your job?
Andy: The most that bothers me about my job as an SAP consultant is when customers don't see me as a partner on an equal footing, but rather as a supplier who has to deliver a service. I think I've found my passion, I like to consult and I'm passionate about it. Whether that has to be SAP - that's just how it came to be.
Jochen: How important do you think further development is as an SAP consultant?
Andy: If you don't constantly develop yourself as an SAP consultant and strive for knowledge, you won't be successful. It is simply no longer enough to know one SAP module perfectly. In today's world, as an SAP consultant I have to know and understand my industry, the processes and everything around it - and then be able to turn the smallest cog in the "end to end" process or at least know someone who can then do that.
Jochen: And how did the All for One Group support you in this?
Andy: We have some good internal training opportunities - even if it could always be a little more 😉 In the past, when deficits were identified in me, I always had a mentor who coached me - usually my supervisor or I was allowed to attend a training session. We live the "player-coach principle" here. It is important that the boss exemplifies what they expect from their employees and recognises what they can build up in their employees.
Jochen: And for the last five years you've been a player-coach yourself, to stay in the picture ...
Andy: Exactly. In the meantime, I give some of the training myself. I have fun doing it and others reward me with their feedback, what could be better?
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Aug 1, 2022 1:05:22 PM