In a great example of how business customers today expect major cloud providers to offer not only the code they create but also the expertise they’ve accumulated, SAP chief marketing and solutions officer Julia White has shared a short video called “3 Things about Navigating Uncertainty” on her LinkedIn account.
White regularly shares her perspectives on high-level issues via a video series called “3 Things,” and they are excellent examples of how major cloud providers can move past the persona of “tech vendor” to that of a higher-value strategic business partner.
While no one knows a specific business as well as the leaders of that company, the big cloud providers have the incredible advantage of speaking to hundreds of CEOs from across every industry and to many thousands of other executives grappling with not just “Whose server is cheaper?” but rather, “What should my overall business look like two years from now?”
In saying that, I don’t mean to position White’s two-minute video as the answer to every question. But it is certainly a very effective outreach and conversation starter for business executives challenged by shifting customer expectations, new supply-chain adaptations, rampant inflation, fears of recession, a wildly different type of labor force, and other issues.
White doesn’t squander her two minutes trying to impart lofty economic theory or academic dogma— rather, she speaks very much from the heart and admits early on that “Today’s economic data generally points towards a downturn in 2023, and that’s certainly what the customers I’m engaging with are planning for.”
So against that plain-talk backdrop, White offers three thoughts, and here’s an excerpt from each:
- “First, if you take a look at what happened at the height of the Covid pandemic, companies with mature digital capabilities surged ahead, while others scrambled to adapt…. And the same is true for economic downturns: The businesses that have technology at their core are more agile — they can adapt their business processes quickly.”
- “Second, we’re entering a period of no more ‘nice to haves’ — businesses are going to have to focus on proven, essential technologies from trusted service providers that have stood the test of time. Because in times like this, every investment matters because every investment is a hard trade-off.”
- “Third, with 50 years of experience, SAP has been through six recessionary cycles…. We know what it takes to navigate through challenging times…”
These types of conversations are more valuable than ever in today’s uncertain economic times, and they also give the big cloud companies a great chance to demonstrate that they are indeed able to see the world through the eyes of their customers. And that they’re willing to share the priceless insights and next practices they’ve gained in speaking with tens of thousands of customers from all across the globe.
Well done, SAP and Julia White!
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