Jane Ashworth

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Jane Ashworth

 

SMB & channel director UK&I, Lenovo

What was your dream career as a child?

I always wanted to be a teacher and follow in my Mum's footsteps.

What has been your personal highlight of 2019?

Bringing together the extended UK channel team to work collaboratively to formulate our 2019 ambition and strategy. Seeing the team working together and sharing their voice really inspired me as a leader.

Which famous person deserves a (gentle) slap?

Avoiding the numerous personalities in today's politics, Paul Hollywood: to wipe off his superior smirk, for ditching Mary Berry and taking the money from C4. How can he take baking bread and cakes so seriously?

What two things (apart from family) would you grab if your house was on fire?

My dog, Eddie. He's such a character and I love my time walking him, it's my time to pause and reflect. And a pair of gold earrings which have been handed down four generations in our family - so many memories and so much history attached to them.

What TV show have you binge watched this year?

Friends, as my daughters have both got into it and I'm loving some ‘90s nostalgia.

How has 2019 been from a business perspective?

We're breaking records every quarter in the Lenovo channel business. We're challenging the norm, listening to our customers, executing on our promises and ultimately seeing the results in our exceptional double-digit growth.

What annoys you most about your commute?

I really enjoy listening to Chris Evans on Virgin Radio, but it's really annoying at points in my journey when the signal drops and inevitably just at a crucial part!

If you could witness one past event, what would it be?

20 July 1969 when the first man landed on the moon. The moment wasn't just about Armstrong, but the team who got him there and the support and commitment of the US government, determined to explore the bounds of the earth.

How do you explain the channel to people?

Look at partners as a community of consultants working with companies in the UK to understand their IT needs and deliver solutions to drive efficiency and results.

What have been your favourite and least favourite partner conference destinations?

I'm lucky enough to visit some fantastic locations, and I can't name one that was worse than the rest. My only complaint is that I never have time to see much of the locations apart from an airport, conference room or hotel. But the Lenovo Partner conference in Southern Ireland, Kilkenny, this year was pretty stunning with exceptional service, fantastic partners, plenty of Guinness and super-cars thrown in. 

What is the biggest challenge facing the channel in 2020?

Reselling products is no longer enough to create real customer value and successful business outcomes. The role of the channel needs to constantly evolve to reflect the demand for true systems integration. This means that the channel needs to further extend its portfolio of standard off-the-shelf products and move towards a more bespoke strategy to deliver to customers' requirements. All of that needs to be supported by investments in upskilling of employees to support the change.

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