Suzanne Al – Najjar, Channel Manager – KSA at A10 Networks, explains her current job role and her management philosophy.
Describe your current job role and the parts that are somewhat challenging?
I lead the channel business for A10 Networks in the Saudi market. The main focus of my job is to manage and grow relationships with the company’s channel partners. This role includes developing sales strategies, partner recruitment and enablement activities including training and certification.
The biggest challenge for me, at the moment, is the COVID-19 pandemic, since a huge part of my job involves networking and it is difficult to build relationships without face to face meetings.
Can you explain how your company works with channel partners?
At A10 Networks we are committed to selling through our channel ecosystem. We believe one of the strongest ways to grow our business is through dedicated channel partners who are leaders in the marketplace and who invest in our company for the long term. Through our world class Affinity partner programme, we give our partners all the tools and resources they need to successfully position and sell our solutions.
How do you ensure channel partners flourish in a highly competitive market?
I have been working with the channel community for a long time. In my opinion, one of the keys to channel success is enabling partners through regular training and certification as part of a vendor’s partner programme. This will enable partners to position and deliver solutions that effect maximum value to all stakeholders – customers, technology vendors and themselves.
What are the latest trends you see emerging across the channel?
We see channel partners becoming specialists in modern day technologies like cloud, 5G, security etc. rather than generalists. We also see a big focus on professional services where there is potential for higher margins. Because of the current tough market conditions, there will be a lot of consolidation as well, as smaller companies will find it difficult to survive. Finally, in this age of Digital Transformation, the channel needs to change their business models, be prudent about which vendors they associate with – vendors that provide them with technology leadership, excellent support and good margins.
What is your management philosophy?
As a channel manager, my philosophy is to build strong relationships with partners and treat them as an extension of A10 Networks. This fosters a sense of goodwill and sets a strong foundation to achieve set objectives. I also believe in quality over quantity.
When you look back at your career what has been the most memorable achievement?
Looking back at my career so far, I would say that I have been very proud to be part of great teams that have consistently delivered results beyond expectations. I can remember the exhilaration of having helped close big deals for my companies, including some Fortune 500 customers.
What made you think of a career in technology?
Technology has been my passion from as far back as I remember. I have always believed in the transformational aspect of Information Technology and its power to help the world combat a crisis. We have seen this happen with the current pandemic. The industry fascinates and excites me since there is constant innovation, which provides scope for constant learning.
What do you think will be the hot technology talking point of 2020?
With Digital Transformation being an imperative in Saudi and the larger Middle East region and in the light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, two key technology areas that are gaining significant interest and growth are IOT and secure remote access.
What are your personal interests and where do you like to spend most of your time after work?
Reading self-improvement books, socialising and working out to keep both mind and body fit.Click below to share this article