Luis Ganhao

Celonaut Spotlight: Luis Ganhao, Global Head of Solution Engineering, Madrid

What makes working at Celonis special for you?

In my more than 20 years of working experience I never saw an organization with so many talented employees together and with so much eager to learn, improve and grow as a company. I spent all my career in large organizations that had everything in place, and where execution (within the existing boundaries) being the number one priority.

Now, I really wanted to be part of “a change”, and not only executing the change – Celonis allows me to actively contribute and drive change. At Celonis we are building a new category in IT.

Which advice would you give to less experienced talents who are just starting their career?

In one sentence: Don’t be afraid to make errors, just do it! Sometimes, I do see people getting stuck because they need a clear go from their management or someone else. If you do believe, you are executing the right action, just do it! Better to ask for “pardon” then for “excuse”.

Which key qualifications should applicants have to join your department, Solution Engineering?

There are 4 key characteristics:

  1. Emotional Intelligence: Capacity to take decisions, to maneuver situations, to navigate the internal and external ecosystem

  2. Technical Know-How: We are an IT company, therefore a background in data science, big data, or anything similar is a huge plus

  3. Business Acumen: Although we are an IT company our goal in life is to help our customers to become “superfluid” enterprises. This means that all our cool tech features must add value to the business and to the world by the end of the day

  4. Alignment to Celonis Culture: This point is especially important to me. Since we are (still) a young company, you should embrace the fact that you will be co-building with us, we need people who are taking over responsibility and are accountable to co-lead the change with us.

What challenges do you face every day and how do you deal with them?

In general, there is a “time-space” limitation: A day only has 24 hours 😊!

What do I mean by that?

At Celonis we are working in an agile organization, and the list of “tasks” to do is immense. So myself and the leadership team has to be crisp and clear to define what are the priority tasks to execute, in a way that we deliver them with the right quality, and we “park” other ideas / tasks in a way that we can return to them later.

In my team meetings I frequently say that we can only “juggle a small amount of balls at same time”, to guarantee some balls don’t drop on the floor. It is better to park those balls and correctly juggle the ones we can deliver!

How does a typical day at Celonis look like for you?

No meeting should take more than 45 minutes, 30 minutes would be great.

I start the day with Daily Standups to align on all the “projects and sprints” we are executing, then dedicate time to a special project or strategy (I always recommend everyone to book their agendas to that), and always finish the day with a customer meeting or an executive conversation with a prospect or with an existing customer.

In these times of work from home, I really recommend and encourage everyone to plan time with your family, for lunch, and time to think about special projects. Otherwise you might be overwhelmed by virtual meetings all day.

Describe your team at Celonis in three words.

Drive. Execution. Leadership.

You are one of the first employees starting in our new Center of Excellence for international tech talent in Madrid. Tell us, what it unique about Madrid and joining Celonis there?

First, it’s about the (Madrid) journey… I accepted this challenge of building up the Center of Excellence because I’m actively contributing to Celonis and its expansion. Furthermore, all new (and old) Celonauts that will start or move to Madrid will bring their own experiences and ideas to the hub. And this leads to building something big with everyone’s personal flavor.

All the Celonis Madrid pioneers will have a deep connection forever. In 20 years some of the young top talents that are joining us in Madrid will probably meet in their mid 40’s in London, in Munich, in Madrid… and they will share a joint journey, the journey of the “Celonis Madrid Center of Excellence”.

To conclude with a fun imagination: They might probably say: “Hey, do you remember Luis?” and the answer will be “Yes… he is enjoying his retirement in the Portuguese sun, fishing!”.

Luis joined Celonis in spring 2020 as a Head of Global Solution Engineering for the Center of Excellence in Madrid. He brings more than 20 years of working experience in the industry. Luis alsways signs with “LG” and in a friendly environment “LG, Life’s Good” because he does believe we must get the maximum of what we do in life; be it: family, work, sports.


Celonis helps you drive process improvement. Across your entire business. At speed. Companies all over the world use Celonis to optimize their processes, boost their business performance, and lighten the load on mother earth.

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