Faces of Fioneer: Erik Lüngen

Faces of Fioneer is a series showcasing the great people behind our company. In celebration of the international Pride Month, we are highlighting Fioneers who are members or strong allies of the LGBTQ+ community.

Meet Erik Lüngen, Chief Technology Officer at SAP Fioneer.

Tell us about yourself!

Born in a small city near Düsseldorf, I did my studies in Stuttgart and have been living in Heilbronn for almost 20 years now.

I am one of the few lucky ones that could get married twice without a divorce in between: In 2008 my husband and I entered into a registered life partnership and renewed our vows in a wedding ten years later – after it was made legally possible for same sex couples in Germany.

What do you do at SAP Fioneer?

I have been working in the IT industry since the start of my career: Before moving to SAP Fioneer, I spent almost 19 years at SAP. As CTO it is my job to pave the path SAP Fioneer is taking to build the future of financial services software from a technology and architecture perspective.

What does diversity mean to you?

To me, diversity doesn’t cover the full picture. To really move the needle in this regard, I would like to open up the discussion beyond diversity –   and talk about diversity, inclusion and belonging: Diversity is a fact, inclusion is a choice, belonging is the proof of good inclusion.

Of course, I am very aware that this topic needs to be tackled with sensitivity and empathy towards the status quo. If you are interested, please read the book “Gayme Changer” by Jens Schadendorf, who provides great examples of good inclusion and why inclusion is important. He also wrote about my LGBTQ+ engagement in his book.

What is it like to work at SAP Fioneer as a member of the LGBTQ+ community?

I feel welcomed, safe and valued at SAP Fioneer. There is no need to hide my true self and since Senior Management and my peers are treating me equally, I can focus on contributing to our business goals.

I appreciate the initiative of some colleagues to form a LGBTQ+ Network at SAP Fioneer and will do my part so that others can have the same positive experience when deciding to be out in the workplace.

How do you promote diversity and inclusion at SAP Fioneer?

At Fioneer, we are fostering a culture of inclusiveness. In addition to formal commitments made by the company we have skin in the game. Corporations can’t walk the talk but leaders can! I strongly believe that only humans can be authentic and emphatic so it is important to commit to inclusiveness be a role model. I am very proud to have been selected as one of the Top 20 Out Executives in Germany over the past several years.

And just to reconfirm, allies are playing a super important role to implement an inclusive culture. I am happy to see that they are getting on board and that more and more grassroots initiatives emerge, like employee resource groups (ERGs) and the LGBTQ+ Network.