Fundamentals of innovation for partners to transform.

I was delighted to have Eduardo Kassner, the leader of the WW One Commercial Partner (OCP) Strategy and Innovation Team, join the podcast for a lively discussion. In this episode, we discuss the fundamentals of innovation for partners to transform and how he and his team address the key areas where partners need the most support, guidance, and enablement.

Eduardo brings a rich set of business, technical and leadership experiences to this role. His deep background as a cloud business leader lends itself to a  deep discussion on the fundamentals for success.

It’s a rich business and technical discussion and points to the work he and Microsoft are doing to enable the partner ecosystem to accelerate and push through the change. Eduardo brings a wealth of resources, highlighting links available to help partners innovate and transform.

In this interview, we address four fundamental focus areas:

  1. The Skills Gap - helping partners understand and address the skills gap, including how to locate, identify, attract, hire, onboard and retain talent. Change is happening so fast, how do you stay current? Check out Eduardo's Blog Post on the topic HERE.
  2. Practice Development - how partners can develop the right practices to grow and optimize their businesses. We share a link HERE to the Practice Development Playbooks with more details.
  3. Marketing / Selling - how partners can build a reputation and differentiate themselves in the market, find the next area of opportunity, build on it, and co-sell with Microsoft. Read more HERE.
  4. Profitability - how partners can achieve and maintain profitable in this new digital age. Read more HERE.

In addition, Eduardo and I discuss how his team is working to evolve Microsoft Competencies to make them more relevant, measurable and deliverable to joint customer satisfaction. Its a continuation of a discussion from Episode #33 with Toby Richards. In addition, we discuss his book “Enterprise Cloud Strategy” with former Microsoft CTO Barry Briggs, which explores the why what and how of an "enterprise-class" IT environment. Eduardo also shares his career journey and how it prepared him for this unique role.

Listeners and readers will find the following links from Eduardo valuable:

You can listen to the podcast on iTunesStitcher, Google PlayPlayer FM, other Android podcast players or by going to the website “Ultimate Guide to Partnering“. 

I appreciate your feedback. You can reach me on Linked In or on email at vincem@cloudwavepartners.net. You can also review this podcast by going to iTunes and searching “Ultimate Guide to Partnering” and clicking on the album art and hitting the rating link. This helps others find the podcast.

Vince Menzione

#38 - Unlock the future, one life at a time, with Margo Day.

I was thrilled to welcome to the podcast Margo Day, Microsoft's Vice President of US Education since 2012 and no stranger to the channel. Margo leads Microsoft's largest business focused on this segment and was Microsoft's US Channel Chief for 5 years from 2001 to 2006.

In this episode, Margo shares with our listeners the US Education business, Microsoft’s focus on outcomes, how she thinks about partners in her business and her career journey.

Margo's enthusiasm and passion for education and empowerment are contagious and come through in this interview. Her business role and her life work are both closely aligned with Microsoft's mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.

Toward the very end of our interview, Margo shares her personal story of the incredible and selfless work she does in collaboration with World Vision to make a difference in the lives of girls in Kenya. That work has been game-changing and has created new opportunities for thousands of girls whose only other path was Female Genital Mutilation and early marriage. Here's a link to Margo's personal blog about this work*.

In addition, in this interview you will learn:

  1. Skills and competencies critical to success in preparing for the jobs of tomorrow - excellent communications skills, creativity, critical thinking, collaboration and traits such as character and citizenship.
  2. What Microsoft is doing to help students use the tools of tomorrow in the learning of today.
  3.  How Minecraft with Code Builder is being used in Education to develop computer coding skills and understand dada and big data.
  4. Hacking Stem and how it is making learning experiential - data, coding, engineering students can see and visualize data examples in lessons plans to help democratize STEM and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math).
  5. How Microsoft tools in the classroom like One Note, Microsoft Learning tools, and Translator are helping students acquire skills to compete.
  6. How institutions are thinking about cost and optimizing operations by shifting their data centers to the cloud and how cloud tools can improve operations and create new scenarios by leveraging predictive analytics.
  7. Managing the campus - how ISV applications can greatly improve business operations leveraging IP that's been developed for other customers outside of Education.
  8. Security and developing an Identity Based Security Model
  9. What's she is seeing in the transformation that she didn't expect to see a year ago.
  10. The work in research and how Research Institutions are using big data to do breathtaking work.
  11. Where should Microsoft partners invest in 2018?
  12. What characteristics make a great partner?
  13. Top challenges organizations in technology face today?
  14. How Margo got started in technology.
  15. How to reach Margo Day - margoday@microsoft.com

Best "old school" tool I'm taking forward into 2018!

As I move my business forward into 2018, the best "old school" tool I found in 2017 was the Best Self Journal. This is not a paid endorsement, I just love its simple approach to integrate gratitude into my day, stay focused in the moment and on my top 3 goals for the day and hold myself accountable through a simple daily review. I love the format, the simplicity and the celebration of knowing I'm making progress on my plan.

Greatest advice shared from a remarkable year...

As I approach the holidays and reflect on hosting a podcast and starting a consulting business, I pause here to reflect on the amazing experiences and share with you a body of work from a remarkable year.

As a background, I began listening to podcasts over a year ago when I ditched my Windows Phone and joined the 99.6% of the population using iOS or Android for mobile. I discovered the podcast app and it became my gateway to a new world of information. I could listen to great content on virtually any topic, where I wanted and when I wanted.

I started my podcast to share my experiences building partnerships and channels that ultimately transformed businesses. Rather than write a book that would have been outdated by the time is was completed, the podcast created an opportunity to interview leaders and document rapidly evolving and transforming technology trends.

During my pause, I recently scanned my 36 episodes. I don't yet profess to be an expert at podcasting, but my interview guests did an outstanding job sharing transformational strategies, technology trends, leadership advice and lessons on the art and science of partnering. It's a pretty decent compilation for technology professionals looking to stay current on the market forces, industry advances and partner strategies of companies like Microsoft with a little Google, Amazon, VMWare and Salesforce thrown in for good measure.

If you are interested in advancing your own knowledge base over the holidays, I've taken the time to catalogue by category the episodes to help you find the content that might be of interest to you.

The hyperlinks below take you to the episode and the show notes. I've also included is a link to that guest's profile.

Ultimate Guide - the art and science of partnering...

  1. How Microsoft thinks about its top partners, Eric Loper. http://bit.ly/2oAFSKg
  2. "Cloud -First" strategy, Microsoft's CSP Program, William Lewallen. http://bit.ly/2AVDnUC
  3. Microsoft P-Seller, Stephanie Martin. http://bit.ly/2AUnPR3
  4. New Microsoft OCP Decoded, Bill Hawkins. http://bit.ly/2wJB5qf
  5. Season of Change, Eric Loper. http://bit.ly/2wMhckg
  6. Channel Incentives, Scott Peltier. http://bit.ly/2AV9uUE
  7. CSP Update, William Lewallen. http://bit.ly/2xAos4F
  8. Licensing Partners, Scott Buth. http://bit.ly/2B7ZpHP

Partners that get it right - lessons from premier technology partners... 

  1. Journey to premier status with Microsoft, Google and Facebook. Tony Safoian. http://apple.co/2uQQbMR
  2. 10th Magnitude - Anatomy of a born in the cloud partner, Jason Rook. http://bit.ly/2BuUNIW
  3. Avepoint leverages social, Dux Raymond Sy. - http://bit.ly/2vRk5l3
  4. Adventos Transformation to ISV, Mariano Delle Donne. http://bit.ly/2w6U9yd
  5. Tribridge - Dynamics Partner of the Year, Tony DiBenedetto. http://bit.ly/2CWjK06
  6. Champion Solutions, Chris Pyle. http://bit.ly/2kG3KXM
  7. Armor Security, Dan Mannion. http://bit.ly/2AUTi5R
  8. Brand, Employees and Customers with 10th Magnitude, Jason Rook. http://bit.ly/2kcRrTs
  9. Kudzoo, Logan Cohen. http://bit.ly/2yT3LfY

 It's happening so fast - trends in transformation...

  1. Microsoft Partners advancing 21st century policy, Jonathan Friebert. http://bit.ly/2kHC9W6
  2. Inspiring Partners, Kati Quigley. - http://bit.ly/2wd8g3G
  3. Introducing Cloud Wave Partners. http://bit.ly/2f6zeqP
  4. Grit and Determination - http://bit.ly/2ikWfI2
  5. Partner Transformation, Toby Richards. http://bit.ly/2oBPWCV
  6. What's Next, Tiffani Bova. http://bit.ly/2CWBR6b
  7. On Leadership and Teams, Don Yaeger. http://bit.ly/2iU1w6S and http://bit.ly/2jfcpAp

 What would Google say, how other Technology Giants think...

  1. Google Cloud Platform, Eric Rosenkrantz. http://bit.ly/2vJyHP7
  2. VMWare with Shawn Toldo. http://bit.ly/2j8SGoA
  3. Intermedia with Eric Martorano. http://bit.ly/2f8Xnu4
  4. Sales Force in Government, Casey Coleman. http://bit.ly/2kG8Fbi

 Industry-focus - partner led...

  1. Government Cloud, Mike Batt. http://bit.ly/2oIwy7w
  2. Transforming Healthcare, Bill Hawkins. http://bit.ly/2B8w2W1
  3. Education Channel, Tom O'Neil. http://bit.ly/2kEpSlo
  4. Promise of Digital Health, Andrea McGonigle. http://bit.ly/2u0rrh8
  5. Public Safety, Rick Zak. http://bit.ly/2nEG3E7

You can read or listen directly to my website, “Ultimate Guide to Partnering“ or if you prefer, you can listen to the podcast on iTunesStitcher, Google PlayPlayer FM, or other Android podcast players.

I have many of great episodes planned for 2018, so I hope you stay tuned. Thank you for your support in 2017 !

Vince Menzione

 

Leadership Lessons - Don Yaeger

As we approach year's end, I asked my good friend and New York Times BestSelling author, Don Yaeger to join me for a special encore episode to discuss his latest book along with leadership lessons and principles that he has applied to a successful career and personal life.

This episode is a little different than our typical episodes, but there are some great nuggets and leadership lessons that Don shares from his rich career and engagement with leaders in all aspects of business.

For this 36th Episode Don Yaeger shares:

  • Leadership lessons from his latest New York Times Best Selling book  - Andrew Jackson & the Miracle of New Orleans.
  • A leadership principle that has kept him focused on his business.
  • How he has learned to stay focused on one thing at a time.
  • How he writes books - his best creation time and why he doesn't suffer from "writer's block" when facing a deadline.
  • The best piece of advice he received when he planned to leave the corporate world and venture into his own business writing books and speaking.
  • His morning rituals - a typical Don Yaeger morning and how he balances a hectic life.
  • How he dealt with a really rough situation in his business.
  • Core operating principles he follows and instills in his company.
  • "The 16 Characteristics of What Makes a Great Teammate" from his NYT Best Selling Book "Teammate"and how that translates to what makes great partnerships. Including the best trait to follow for an organization going through a significant transformation
    1. Humble - Make a point to praise others, especially when you are being praised.
    2. Fully Engaged - Be present at all times. Notice all that is happening.
    3. Encouraging - Identify those co-workers who are struggling and find ways to inspire them.
    4. Respected - Allow your voice to be heard in a manner that holds people accountable.
    5. Reliable - Be consistent in your roles so your team knows what to expect of you everyday.
    6. Problem Solver - When a mistake is made, lead the team to a solution instead of placing blame.
    7. Resourceful - share your expertise with these co workers in your circle.
    8. Willing to Sacrifice - Assume whatever role necessary - never say no it's not my job.
    9. Positive - When things go wrong, highlight the upside.
    10. Communicators - If you have something constructive to add, speak-up.
    11. Relationship Builders - Beyond your department, build bridges.
    12. Honest - Transparent and well-intended for the betterment of the team.
    13. Hard Workers - Arrive early and exceed expectations.
    14. Always Ready - Volunteer for assignments no one else wants.
    15. Competitors - remind others that winning matters to you.
    16. Fun - remain approachable, reliable and friendly.

Don has written 27 books and 11 are New York Times Bestsellers and his books make great holiday gifts. You can search site here or contact Don directly and mention that you heard this podcast Don@Team180.com.

You can listen to the podcast here or on iTunesStitcher, Google PlayPlayer FM, other Android podcast players.

As with each of my interview and articles, I appreciate your feedback. You can reach me on Linked In or on email at vincem@cloudwavepartners.net. You can also review this podcast by going to iTunes and searching “Ultimate Guide to Partnering” and clicking on the album art and hitting the ratings link. This helps others find the podcast.

I hope you enjoy this episode!

Vince Menzione

Cloud Promises to Drive Significant Transformation in Public Safety with Rick Zak

One area where transformation has the potential for high impact that improves lives is Public Safety. A few short years ago, data security and data sharing was a huge impediment to the use of the cloud in this market. That's when one of the tech giants invested in CJIS - Criminal Justice and Information Systems certifications to allay governmental agency concerns. Today with these certifications as an enabler, the cloud promises to drive significant transformation in public safety and opens up opportunities for partners.

For my 35th episode of the Ultimate Guide to Partnering, I welcome Rick Zak the Justice and Public Safety Solutions Director at Microsoft. In his role, Rick provides guidance on strategy, technology, and policy for law enforcement, situational awareness, collaboration and video, emergency management and corrections systems. On this podcast we discuss how  transformative technologies are impacting this sector and how the cloud promises to drive significant transformation in public safety and law enforcement markets.

Our conversation explores how government has the unique opportunity to improve lives and protect citizens through technology as part of their "smart cities" initiatives. Microsoft has it's own smart city program known as City Next. It’s a really great conversation for partners looking to learn more about this market, how the perception of Cloud has changed, and how Microsoft Gov Cloud drives transformation in this market.

In this episode we explore:

  1. How Microsoft serves the law enforcement and public safety community.
  2. How this evolved from core infrastructure to supporting the transformative capabilities of the cloud.
  3. How Rick ended up focused on this specific vertical.
  4. Three areas where the cloud opens up transformation.
  5. How the perception of "cloud" has changed in the Law Enforcement market.
  6. Solutions he is seeing in this market from ISV's - Independent Solution Vendors.
  7. The opportunity for partners to take their core competencies from other sectors and markets into public sector.
  8. How IoT - Internet of Things - devices and sensors are changing the conversation.
  9. Characteristics of a great partner, advice for partners that struggle and the work he does to help partners along their transformational journey to the cloud.
  10. Books he’s gifted - Lincoln by Gore Vidal and Connections by James Burke.
  11. How you can reach Rick to engage https://www.linkedin.com/in/richardzak/

You can listen to the podcast here or on iTunesStitcher, Google PlayPlayer FM, other Android podcast players.

As with each of my interview and articles, I appreciate your feedback. You can reach me on Linked In or on email at vincem@cloudwavepartners.net. You can also review this podcast by going to iTunes and searching “Ultimate Guide to Partnering” and clicking on the album art and hitting the ratings link. This helps others find the podcast.

I hope you enjoy this episode!

Vince Menzione

Brand, Employees and Customers as the New Currency with Jason Rook.

The pace of change and transformation is happening fast, customers are moving to public cloud infrastructures at a rate not seen before, open source technologies and tools are enabling the shift, and partners need to be adaptable.

These are messages that resonated when I recently met with Jason Rook, for a special encore interview and update on the state of the transformation from his vantage point.

Jason is the Vice President of Market Development for 10th Magnitude, an early "Born in the Cloud" partner. Microsoft chose 10th as its 2017 Partner of the Year for Infrastructure and Hybrid Cloud.

On Episode 13 of my podcast, Jason and I discussed the company’s evolution and growth and in this interview episode he shares what he is observing today from his vantage point.

In this interview we discuss the rate of change and growth, emerging technology trends and why brand, employees and customers are the new currency. By listening to this episode of the podcast, you’ll learn:

1. The rapid sun-setting of on-premise data centers and the shift of customers to embracing public cloud. His company has migrated 166 data centers to the public cloud in 2017.

2. Containerization and how this technology is giving customers flexibility and scale.

3. The trend toward Open Source.

4. Why he believes customers choose Microsoft as their Public Cloud.

5. How he is viewing Microsoft’s internal change and transformation as a partner.

6. Why “ focus” as a partner is critical to branding.

7. Brand, employees and customers as the new currency.

8. How his company now views the Managed Service Provider model.

9. How he continues to recruit great talent.

10. Two books by Verne Harnish he recommends to partners looking to grow and transforming their businesses -Mastering the Rockefeller Habits and Scaling Up.

 

You can listen to the podcast on iTunesStitcher, Google PlayPlayer FM, other Android podcast players or by going to the website “Ultimate Guide to Partnering“. 

As with each of my interviews and articles, I appreciate your feedback. You can reach me on Linked In or on email at vincem@cloudwavepartners.net. You can also review this podcast by going to iTunes and searching “Ultimate Guide to Partnering” and clicking on the album art and hitting the ratings link. This helps others find the podcast.

I hope you enjoy this episode!

Vince Menzione

Worldwide Partner Transformation with Toby Richards.

In this episode we peel back on the Worldwide Partner Transformation going on at Microsoft and the One Commercial Partner - OCP organization that is driving much of it, with Toby Richards, the General Manager of Partner Programs at Microsoft.

Toby and his team are responsible for partner programs worldwide at Microsoft including the Microsoft Partner Network program, the CSP - Cloud Solution Provider partner experience, community engagement like IAMCP and the Microsoft Inspire partner conference. In our discussion we focus on how his team is supporting and leading this worldwide partner transformation, what programs are getting the most attention and what has changed.

Toby has spent over 25 years in the technology industry, holding several leadership roles within Microsoft including Customer & Partner Experience, and most recently, Partner Support within the company’s WW Services organization. In our discussion we also discuss his career journey.

In this episode you will learn:

  1. What programs are getting the most of his attention during the worldwide partner transformation.
  2. How he is thinking about the startup community and early stage partners with IP.
  3. The new Microsoft Partner Community Portal, how it drives partner-to-partner or P2P engagement and plans to expand the content to drive greater collaboration.
  4. His perspective on the new Build With, GTM and Sell With functions.
  5. His experience in the Customer and Partner Experience Organization and how he has applied his perspective on the change and transformation with an emphasis on customer success.
  6. The Modern Partner Series and its four attributes: 1. Differentiate to Stand Out, 2. Optimize your Operations, 3. Modernizing Sales and Marketing and 4. Focus on Customer Lifetime Value.
  7. The greatest challenges he sees with partners transforming and making the shift to the new model.
  8. Why it’s important to follow the incentives.
  9. Hear about the latest findings from IDC on the Partner Profitability Model.
  10. His professional journey and why the voice of customer always wins.

You can listen to the podcast on iTunes , Google PlayPlayer FM, other Android podcast players or by going to the website “Ultimate Guide to Partnering“. 

As with each of my interviews and articles, I appreciate your feedback. You can reach me on Linked In or on email at vincem@cloudwavepartners.net. You can also review this podcast by going to iTunes and searching “Ultimate Guide to Partnering” and clicking on the album art and hitting the ratings link. This helps others find the podcast.

I hope you enjoy this episode!

Vince Menzione

"What's Next" in technology transformation, insights from Tiffani Bova.

I'm delighted to welcome a thought leader, sales strategist, growth adviser and change agent to Ultimate Guide to Partnering, Tiffani Bova.

Tiffani is the Global, Customer Growth, Sales and Innovation Evangelist at Salesforce. Her focus is to help drive customer success within their vast customer and partner ecosystem, helping companies re-imagine how they can not only grow bigger but grow better with innovative business models and technology.

Bova has earned accolades from the best leaders in the technology world like HP, IBM, Amazon, Oracle, SAP, Oracle, Cisco, and Microsoft. They praise her for cutting-edge analysis and her skill at inventing bold strategies for growth. "Tiffani is one of the most knowledgeable analysts in the industry when it comes to understanding channel, customer and tech trends." "She's the only one who speaks to the real world we all live in – recognizing our need to preserve the existing revenue stream while simultaneously developing a whole new approach." "Her ability to see clearly several steps ahead and uncover practical solutions to shortcomings and challenges is a true asset."

Prior to working with Salesforce she was a VP, Distinguished Analyst and Research Fellow at Gartner. Bova has also lived in the fast lane of high tech, leading sales organizations, driving growth and creating durable competitive advantages at Sprint, Inacom, Interland (web.com) and Gateway Computers. She learned how to lead sales and marketing teams in hotly competitive markets. She created some of the first cloud based channel programs and completely reinvented "go-to-market" tactics in several hardware and services businesses. And she developed her unique ability to connect with executives and employees at every level.

Tiffany and I have an extensive and rich conversation. In this episode you will learn:

  • Why she decided to host her own podcast “What’s Next” to share the conversations with thought leaders on business transformation. Listen here: http://whatsnextpodcast.libsyn.com/website.
  • Partner transformation and the pace of change that she has observed over a span of several years. And that speed of business is the new currency.
  • Disruption of existing models and why monetization is really tough for smaller organizations.
  • Why it’s hard for both the vendor and partner to shift.
  • What is the right pace of change for IT channel partners.
  • Trends she sees in the marketplace.
  • Advice she gives organizations looking to transformation.
  • Why "Customer Experience is the new battleground".
  • When a business coach or advisor can help your small business through transformation.
  • Her mentors, career advice, lessons learned and other nuggets from her career journey.

You can listen to the podcast or view the full transcript of my interview by going to the show notes on iTunes , Google PlayPlayer FM, other Android podcast players or by going to my website “Ultimate Guide to Partnering“. 

As with each of my interviews and articles, I appreciate your feedback. You can reach me on Linked In or on email at vincem@cloudwavepartners.net. You can also review this podcast by going to iTunes and searching “Ultimate Guide to Partnering” and clicking on the album art and hitting the ratings link. This helps others find the podcast.

Thank you for following and listening.

I hope you enjoy this episode!

Vince Menzione

Salesforce in Government, with Casey Coleman

Welcome to the 31st episode of The Ultimate Guide to Partnering. My guest for this episode of the podcast is Casey Coleman, Senior Vice-President of Global Government Solutions at Salesforce. She is responsible for enterprise positioning and solution strategies for government customers worldwide.

Salesforce was at the forefront of business transformation as one of the first pure cloud companies back in 1999. Casey's career has been at the intersection of both government and industry, having led GSA's transformation as its CIO during the Obama administration. At GSA, Casey chaired the Federal CIO Council’s Cloud First committee that developed the FedRAMP standard for cloud cybersecurity.

Casey holds several honors and awards from various organizations, including the Computerworld Premier 100 Award and the MIT Sloan CIO Symposium Award for Leadership in Innovation. She is a three-time winner of the Federal Computer Week Federal 100 Award.

In this episode, we peel back on Casey's role at Salesforce, Salesforce solutions focused in on the government sector, Salesforce as a company, and the amazing DreamForce event taking place in San Francisco in the coming week.

In this episode you'll learn more about:

  • Casey's role leading Government Solutions for Salesforce, one of seven industry markets for the company.
  • What she loves about working for Salesforce and the company's four core values - Growth, Innovation, Quality and Trust.
  • Why customers choose Salesforce as a platform and vendor.
  • What makes a good partner and what challenges she saw driving change with vendors when she was at GSA.
  • The greatest opportunities for continued growth in government.
  • How she is thinking about her first DreamForce event and her keynote.
  • A link to Casey's session at the event here: https://success.salesforce.com/Sessions?eventId=a1Q3A00000stRRuUAM#/session/a2q3A000001yt5lQAA
  • Her career journey, advice she received getting started and mentors.

You can listen to the podcast or view the full transcript of my interview by going to the show notes on iTunes , Google PlayPlayer FM, other Android podcast players or by going to my website “Ultimate Guide to Partnering“. 

As with each of my interviews and articles, I appreciate your feedback. You can reach me on Linked In or on email at vincem@cloudwavepartners.net. You can also review this podcast by going to iTunes and searching “Ultimate Guide to Partnering” and clicking on the album art and hitting the ratings link. This helps others find the podcast.

Thank you for following and listening.

I hope you enjoy this episode!

Vince Menzione