The Surprise: "Your People"

About 8 weeks ago I was at a customer dinner and sat next to a relatively new customer contact of mine – let’s call him Bob.


Bob and I had recently met at their offices in London, where we were invited in to ‘reset’ our vendor/client relationship. Unfortunately, whilst Bob’s company had been a long standing customer of SAP Concur, we’d lost touch with each other and the relationship had broken down. In our meeting, we had restated our commitment and agreed to an action plan to get closer to each other’s business to ensure their success with the Concur Expense app.

We invited Bob to joined us for the UK&I customer dinner at the Nipa Thai restaurant at the Royal Lancaster, London, after day one of our SAP Concur Fusion EMEA conference.

Bob and I sat down for dinner. Reacquainted, I asked Bob ‘How was your day?’

‘Surprising…’ Bob replied

Yikes! SURPRISING, eh?

I started to ponder what was surprising about the event.

I’d hoped ‘SURPRISING’ was our innovations and announcements.

Maybe ‘SURPRISING’ was the keynote speaker David Meade, who was extremely good.

Or perhaps ‘SURPRISING’ was our customer speakers, talking through their successes.

The partner booths?

Intrigued I asked Bob ‘What was surprising?’

And then he hit me with it….as dry as he could possibility make it.




Seeing the concern on my face Bob continued… ‘I have spent today engaging with as many SAP Concur employees as I could. I have been genuinely amazed by their customer centricity, commitment to our success and help offered. They are all genuinely nice, lovely people. You must be very proud.’


Wow! And of course yes – I am incredibly proud!


When I joined SAP Concur in 2017, one of the reasons I joined the company was the absolute commitment to customer success in the whole organisation which starts at the top with Mike Eberhard, the SAP Concur President. When a company is so committed to customer success it’s easy to attract, retain and develop great people who thrive on in that culture and are focused on doing the right thing for our customers every day.


As a leader in any business, this has to be one of the greatest accolades a customer could bestow on an organisation. Although many of the people Bob met, did work for me that day, I can only take a tiny piece of the glory in this achievement. Our executives and staff all over the world create and nurture this fantastic culture which ensures the culture endures.


And it must endure.


Customer Success, Customer Experience, Customer Engagement – which ever your flavour of title - has become such an important strategy to tech companies, with many start-ups, focusing here first to build our their businesses. Only companies who truly put the customer at the centre of their focus will continue to be successful as the world gets more disruptive.


One of the great things about SAP Concur is this culture has been present from the very beginning.


Every hire is made with the customer in mind. Who will collaborate to achieve every success? Who will see the customer’s perspective first to delight and help them succeed?


As I leave SAP Concur today to take an extended leave with my family over the summer, I will miss the fantastic people who LIVE to promote that culture every day.


Emma Maslen

- I will always Concur -






Loading next article