Channel sales director, UK & Ireland, Veeam Software
What is your greatest career move to date?
When I graduated there was lots of unemployment so I ended up painting railings, moving from this to selling unbranded PCs and laptops and starting my career in IT. What is top of your bucket list? Right now, going on safari in South Africa with my family.
What has changed most since you started working in the channel?
IT has changed dramatically. The days of quoting SKUs and stacking products high are long gone. The most noticeable change is the complexity of what we sell and the expectations we all place on performance and availability of IT, especially for the new emerging breed of ‘always-on' businesses. The channel has had to adapt and skill-up to ensure they're able to understand and meet the demands of their customers. Additionally, the way customers consume and buy IT has irreversibly shifted, requiring new processes and payment models to match their expectations.
How do you think Brexit is going to affect the channel? I would suggest that the primary impact is on the exchange rate. Dollar-based vendors will see less dollar back for every pound or unit sold. We need to ensure the right levels of investment are maintained despite this impact. The cost of incentives and trips abroad for partners has increased.
What is your least favourite task during the working day?
The evil side of ‘unnecessary emails', essentially when it's used as a bad communication tool.
If you were an animal, what would you be?
I'd be a tiger. My job demands agility, a desire to win and high energy.
If you won the big one on EuroMillions, what would you do?
I genuinely enjoy my job, but would take the opportunity to do something which allowed more of a balance, something that gives me more spare time. I would find a way of becoming involved in organisations that are investing in the next generation through education and training.
What is your worst habit?
I don't suffer fools gladly and sometimes it shows.
How has 2016 been for you?
Fantastic. We have made great investment in the channel and in the business in both headcount and marketing. We're continuing to grow significantly beyond the market rate and we're building a very strong high-performing team.
If you didn't work in the IT channel, what would be your dream career?
Something involved in motorsport, preferably behind the wheel. What major issues will the channel face in 2017? The continuing high demands and expectation placed by the end user, demystifying the complexity of hybrid cloud, and adaptation to new payment models to suit the way customers consume IT.
Congratulations to all those who made the shortlist - your entries now go through to the second stage of judging in October
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