Four weeks of very intense work, ups and downs, improvements and throwbacks – all cumulating in one day: the day of the final presentation. The goal of this day is to share not only your own team-results but also to learn from the other team’s challenges, problems and solutions they came up with. What did the others do during the last four weeks? I was curious about their outcomes, strategies and feedback.
As the SAP Social Sabbatical is an essential part of SAP’s overall CSR Strategy, the day started with a media event, where local journalists from Ethiopian TV channels, radio stations and newspapers could inform themselves about the program and its goals. Besides some background on the four different social sabbatical projects, we also shared personal impressions about our experiences in Ethiopia, the working culture and our relationship to our hosts companies.
All eyes on us
Even more important – especially for us as a group – was the second part of the day, where each group presented their project results in 25-30 minutes. It was great to see that each team did not only fulfill the pre-defined scope of work, but also built up a very personal and deep relationship to their host company. Representatives of each company confirmed this impression while sharing their side of the story – and where overwhelmed with the created material. Impressive was also the range of expertise that we brought to the table altogether: the projects varied from go-to-market-strategies, long-term business plans, SWOT analysis, marketing & communication plans up to re-writing the business model.
One aspect that definitely stood out was the fun we all had, working at our local companies for the last four weeks, the passion we developed about our projects and the wide range of unexpected experiences we made. Each one of the teams will surely stay in contact with their companies, be there for questions and support whenever possible. We all concluded our presentations with a mutual agreement: a big thank you to our Ethiopian hosts, to CSR for setting up the social sabbatical in this very efficient and professional way and to SAP for making this experience possible at all.