Everything at SAP comes back to our vision: “Help the world run better and improve people’s lives.” This is the driving force behind SAP’s software, our brand, and our daily operations. But what does it mean to really live this vision? SAP’s Month of Service, our annual signature volunteering initiative, gives thousands of employees the chance to find out. More than 550 employee volunteer activities are held every October in more than 50 countries – each one a real-life opportunity to improve the lives of people in our local communities.
Last week I participated by volunteering at “Anpfiff ins Leben” (“Kick-off into life”), an inspiring organization that helps young athletes shape their future.
SAP has been a partner of the organization since it was founded in December 2001 in partnership with the Dietmar Hopp Foundation. We were at the girls and women center in St. Leon-Rot (called “Mädchen- und Frauenförderzentrum”), which was the first “Anpfiff ins Leben” location to specifically support girls and young women; it is now used as a training and education center for TSG 1899 Hoffenheim soccer club’s two women’s teams as well as seven junior leagues.
When we arrived at the “Anpfiff ins Leben” facility and saw all the work to be done, I didn’t think we could do it. Renovating aplayground, building and painting benches, creating new outdoor spaces, cleaning windows and floors – how could our small group finish all of this in just a few hours?
Luckily, Alicia Lenze and Ina Daniela Weber pulled together a top-notch team of Corporate Affairs colleagues. Four hours later – with a little help from special guest Bill McDermott – we couldn’t believe what we had accomplished. It was a true example of teamwork, and a rare chance to get out of the office, hang up the phone, and really get to know each other. In fact, research shows that corporate volunteering supports the bottom line in part by increasing employee engagement (which is especially important for attracting and retaining millennials).
SAP’s Month of Service has only just begun – there are still many opportunities to get out there and volunteer. I highly recommend it, not only to meet new colleagues and bond with your team, but also to truly live out SAP’s vision of helping the world run better and improving people’s lives.