What was your first job, and how did you get into IT?
My first job was as a marketing analyst for Plessey Semiconductors. After this I moved to a software company in a sales operations role and moved into sales from there. Between then and my more recent history at StorageTek and Hitachi Data Systems I've held a variety of sales and management roles in software, services and solutions organisations in the tech industry.
Are you a cat person or a dog person?
Definitely a dog person - the bigger the better!
What were you like at school?
I was very sporty at school. I loved getting out and about in the fresh air and relished being part of a winning team.
What is the most important trend to follow in 2016?
Service-led solutions with capacity on demand and flexible usage models will be key this year. This trend demonstrates the shift away from traditional infrastructure and capex towards innovative solutions which are more relevant and flexible for customers.
What is your most annoying habit?
Being an early morning person tends to annoy those who aren't!
What is your biggest regret in business?
I think it's important not to have regrets and instead value the experience you gained.
If you were queen, what would you do first?
My first mission as queen would be to ensure the whole of the UK is digitally connected because I think it's important for every home and business to have fast and reliable connectivity.
What was the first record you bought?
Puppy Love by Donny Osmond.
Do you think there is a skills shortage? What can be done about it?
There is absolutely a skills shortage. As an industry, we need to promote STEM subjects and the related career opportunities more within schools and colleges, as well as addressing the gender imbalance in our recruitment strategies. Businesses should provide graduate and/or apprentice programmes wherever possible and ensure we maximise the potential of our employees by giving them the opportunity to develop their skills and pursue their interests.
Do you have a favourite motivational quote?
"When the going gets tough, the tough get going" - it always reminds me that perseverance pays dividends.
CRN in print or digital form?
Perhaps surprisingly, I would pick print. I think it's still good to disengage from technology from time to time to absorb information.
Sweet or savoury?
I've always been more of a savoury person, because there are far more interesting flavours to enjoy - variety being the spice of life.
What are the characteristics of the perfect channel partner?
For me, the perfect channel partner is focused, flexible and forward-thinking. Partnering with an organisation that has a plan and identity, and will adjust course according to market or customer requirements while maintaining an aspirational outlook is sure to engage high-energy, supportive vendors like Hitachi, which is here to deliver value to partners and customers well into the future.
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