SAP development director Thomas Saueressig, 38, has been managing global product development at Europe’s largest software company for almost four years – and is considered a mastermind. In the successful ntv podcast “Biz & Beyond”, the boss of 36,000 developers explains how to build a career.
That could have gone wrong eight years ago. Thomas Saueressig, just 30, was head of IT at the Walldorf-based software giant when the internal email infrastructure collapsed. 100,000 employees suddenly couldn’t send emails and had no access to internal calendars. Nothing worked for days.
For tech freak Saueressig, who was in charge of internal IT at the time, this was the most stressful phase in his young career. “That was a very critical moment and a huge escalation,” he remembers in the ntv podcast “Biz & Beyond”. He had to approach the board and tried to explain things. “I could have made it easy for myself,” says Saueressig today. He could have reflexively shifted responsibility to an employee. But he decided otherwise. “I went forward and into the storm.”
The response from his colleagues was devastating. “You’ll never have a career at SAP again,” some said. And: “Career as a board member? Never.” You should be wrong. It was precisely this moment in which Saueressig took on responsibility that was crucial to his being able to join the board at the age of 34. Because people realized back then that “I am taking the lead, that I am not hiding.” His credo since then: Careers are decided in the storm, not in the sunshine.
Of course, technical expertise is also important. “Success isn’t just about having knowledge. It’s about how you apply and use that knowledge,” says Saueressig. And about the mindset. For Saueressig, this means being open to new ideas, not being afraid of taking risks, showing passion for his profession and learning from mistakes. In a time of rapid change and rapid technological development, these principles are crucial for personal and professional success.
“Biz & Beyond” is the business and success podcast that Germany has never had before. The transatlantic podcast team Sandra Navidi and Ulrich Reitz speaks with powerful decision-makers, international experts and extraordinary personalities. They provide insights into their business, their successes – and also personal setbacks.
Biz & Beyond – the business podcast with Sandra Navidi and Ulrich Reitz. From now on as a push message in the ntv app, on RTL+ and everywhere there are podcasts.
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