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Seeking wisdom of crowds… April 30, 2007

Posted by Amit Chatterjee in General Enterprise Musings, GRC, Uncategorized.

As with most first time bloggers, I was assuming that Web 2.0 would simplify my life.  The reality is that the process i went through to make this blog actually appear was easily classified as a nightmare.  

 Everything from logging into a hosting account, to managing to identify the right “blog” service, determining how best to work with the blogosphere, simply was too taxing —  clearly too much consumer choice has baffled me and cost me 8 weeks from inception of idea to actual execution.

I was completely prepared to abandon this effort, but my company, SAP had a conference last week (SAPPHIRE in Atlanta), and I met some other bloggers, and realized that blogging was the equivalent of talk radio for software.  I was impressed by the number of bloggers, and also the varient in quality and approach to make their noise (voice) heard.  Much like the days of listening to political pundits or even that recent shock DJ that got fired, each blog will undoubtedly share their point of view.   Being a man with several points of view, this medium seems a natural home for me.

But what is different than talk radio, is that listener, or in this case the reader, has significant power.  the “wisdom” does not end with my blog, but is rather the beginning of the refinement or rejection of a germinating idea that the source blog put forth.  Hence I am even more excited about getting my ideas out there so they can be torn apart and then rebuilt, I want to engage the blogosphere for their wisdom on what is going on, and yes, amazingly even advice on what to do better.

At the same time, I look forward to sharing (read “expounding upon”) my insights from time spent in enterprise software.  I have been in the space in 1997 in some form or another, and have been around the transformation of this industry.  Even at an industry leader like SAP, I held numerous roles.  I was part of the team that launched NetWeaver into the market, then head of strategy for product and technology at SAP.   Also, I founded the SAP GRC business unit within SAP.  I have been directly involved in the SAP GRC business since we announced the business unit last year.  At some point, I am sure I will get into a biography or some story about myself, but for now, figure I spent most of my life either in or around the enterprise aspect of software.

Net net, I believe that enterprise software continues to work.   

So practically, that means I dont subscribe to the point that new ideas mean value, nor do I believe that old ideas need to be there forever (I break enough glass).  I believe despite excitement, new ideas usually don’t equate equivalent impact to old ideas that generate shareholder value (thus lack of uptake).  While Web 2.0 will have an effect and is good for consumers (overall a very positive outcome)– right now the impact to an enterprise is not business ready. 

Essentially, it is the equivalent of a REIT company explaining to its shareholders that its future growth is tied to its success in 2nd Life (play the game).  No one is saying that cannot happen, but clearly you would be “investing at the early stages.” 

So what I hope to establish with those that choose to read this, is an opportunity to provide a business implication focused view of the technology and provide readers with an understanding of how and where to invest in this curve.

I’ll post my first set of thoughts on Enterprise software and GRC in a few days.  Look forward to the exchange.



1. Mark Crofton - April 30, 2007

Welcome to the blogosphere! Your unique perspective will really add to the conversation; I look forward to reading your posts.

2. The Village View - April 30, 2007

New SAP blogger: Amit Chatterjee on GRC

Amit Chatterjee, who founded SAP’s GRC business unit and is one of the unit’s driving forces, finally launched his blog today. His blog should be interesting certainly to those of you interested in understanding SAP’s strategy on Governance, Risk an…

3. theotherthomasotter - May 1, 2007

Keep them coming.

4. Faheem Ahmed - May 2, 2007

Excellent! I hope you inspire a flood of executive bloggers from SAP… these informal conversations much more interesting (and insightful) than press releases…

5. Frank Koehntopp - May 2, 2007

a very warm welcome to the blogosphere – welcome to the conversation!

6. Mike Prosceno - May 2, 2007

Hi Amit,

Welcome and good luck with the blog!

7. Marilyn Pratt - May 2, 2007

Glad to see you here. It is refreshing to read your candor around the somewhat clumsiness (high bar) of participation and access to the blogsphere. The blogsphere is, in my opinion, still a place with a fair measure of technology-bias, geekiness, and maybe even age bias for some of us, too. (I’m a granny learning these past 2 years about the joys of really simple syndication, the power of the collaboration arsenals available to us and trying not to be too disingenuous here as I am in my day job, a community evangelist for the new SAP BPX community). I’ve had the feeling that without knowing the “secret handshake” and paying stiff learning curve dues, one can feel a little disenfranchised here. I know, Web 2.0 is supposed to represent open and democratic, but open for all? I hope so. My business is to make access to blogging in our community, less painful, more egalitarian, and to be an advocate of the user, be they customer, partner, or even our own management. I am glad that someone has pointed out that in blog editor world the emperor needs some clothes…ease of use…accessibility for all those truly interested in sharing and communicating without barriers and borders. Looking forward to reading GRC content and seeing that in BPX as well.
Marilyn Pratt

8. Mark Galloway - May 4, 2007

Great opening salvo Amit. I’d like to hear more about your thoughts on why new ideas, innovations and technology don’t have uptake. You made a comment that implied only new things that bring shareholder value get uptake. Being a recovering enterprise software product marketing type, I don’t think I can agree with that perspective. From my perspective, it doesn’t have so much to do with shareholder value as much as it does with the new idea being applied in a focused way that gets it across the chasm. Too many a great ideas languish because too many “smart” idea entrepreneurs / intraprenuers convince themselves their idea is good for the whole world. I look forward to reading more of your stuff.

9. Manoj Ranaweera - May 17, 2007

Amit, pleasure to have met you on the 15th. What a gig! Still recovering and many posts to publish including my take on GRC. Regards Manoj

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