Brocade had a record three leaders named to publisher CRN’s Women of the Channel list for 2016: Raelyn Kritzer, Berinda Post and I'm honored to have been the third. We’re really pleased as this testifies to Brocade’s commitment to investing in our channel, driving added sales opportunities and excellence in our channel programs and marketing.
Here are some key points our Women of the Channel were recognized for, and excerpts of the leadership advice they shared with CRN.
A key accomplishment: This year we leveraged our OEM and Alliance partnerships to provide "better together" solutions, programs and campaigns to bring more meaningful value to our mutual channels and gain access to new markets and verticals. Improved partner experience was another major initiative this year, providing an advanced program and marketing automation platforms that offer ease of use, greater flexibility and tools to build partner pipeline.
A goal for year ahead: Create a simplified approach for recognizing, enabling, and rewarding various business motions. We will invest in an improved PRM (Partner Relationship Management) platform to provide consistency, predictability and ease of doing business for our valued partner base.
Advice: Keep your eyes on something still. Throughout your career you'll experience ups and downs - and the down times may cause more stress than they should. Keep yourself in-check by focusing on an end state, a hobby, who you are as a person, your faith, etc. It will be different for every situation but finding your "happy place" will help to put things in perspective.
Key accomplishment: While other companies tend to come in with a big, complex strategy and present a portfolio of products, I task my team to take on the role of bringing new customers and opportunities to our partners; to work hand-in-hand to identify new ways to breakthrough and find new business both for Brocade and for our partners. This has led to a significant increase in qualified leads and joint opportunities.
A goal for year ahead: To keep our partners and their customers ahead of the game, we will develop momentum in our software division and deliver intelligent insights for our channel partners so they can show customers a new solution and break the status quo. We'll continue to attract and retain great partners who want to be on a journey to inspire customers to think differently.
Advice: Establish yourself as someone qualified to get the job done and let that speak for itself. I truly believe women are natural leaders and entrepreneurs. Laugh, have fun and remember that what you're working on today is likely not saving the world. We need to make our health a priority in our business and in our family because without it you have nothing.
Kristina Scott, Senior Manager, Global Partner Marketing Communications and Enablement (disclosure, this is me).
Key accomplishment: A new and expanded Brocade Partner Network Resource Center organized to support what our partners sell, and our channel competencies. Partners gain at-a-glance "Sales Kits" which combine both sales materials and a continually updated range of modular lead generation activities. In just the first two weeks since launch, we saw a jump of more than 10x in the number of resources being downloaded and a 6x spike in campaign activity.
A goal for the year ahead: A priority this year will be creating within the Resource Center different paths with corresponding enablement and campaigns to help, for instance, Distributors train and manage VARs, or VARs who sell solutions with Nutanix or VMware.
Advice: Try out different career directions, such as by seeking out rotational opportunities within your company or jobs that give you varying perspectives on an industry, function or technology. You might be surprised by what you learn about yourself. In any event, the fresh perspectives you gain will translate into a broader skill set that you can use to step up your contribution.
In addition to the Women of the Channel list, Raelyn was also named to the Power 100, a subset of the Women of the Channel selected based on their exemplary record of success and their level of influence in the channel.
Berinda was named an Up and Comer, a special recognition for rising stars executives.
To read more, click on each name to go to the post on CRN’s site. Congrats, Raelyn and Berinda!