“Be The Person Your Dog Thinks You Are”:
Life is Good at the Summit Closing Keynote

Turns out optimism is good for business. Who knew? Bert Jacobs does. In a shirt that read “Takers eat well, but givers sleep well,” the Life is Good co-founder and chief executive optimist delivered the Closing Keynote, spreading a powerful message of optimism—and earning a standing ovation—as partners closed out their Summit experience.

Bert encouraged the audience to “start each meeting asking what is good? Start positive,” he said. There was a lot of emotion in the keynote room as a man who obviously loves what he does showed that all of us can make a difference. “Optimism is not a soft philosophy. It is a pragmatic strategy for living a happy and fulfilling life,” he said. “Live happy and fulfilling lives and work so that your children can have happy and fulfilling lives.”

It was an incredibly motivating and moving presentation, and I for one am ready to focus on solutions, not problems, and start the day with something good. Gratitude is a superpower!

To close out his presentation, Bert invited the Citrix community to join in by giving to the Life is Good’s Kids Foundation—with funds matched by Citrix—and partners really responded. As of this post, more than $45,000 was raised on-site, and $15,000 (and growing) online. I’m so proud to be part of this company, and this community!

As I overheard in the audience, a message about the opportunity to give back after a week focused on sales was totally uplifting. If you weren’t on-site and would like to make a donation to the Life is Good’s Kids Foundation, visit lifeisgood.com/Citrix.  

Partner Appreciation Party

Speaking of gratitude, I’m thankful that a little rain didn’t stop our partners and sales teams from celebrating #CitrixPartnerLove at last night’s Partner Appreciation Party. I hope you enjoyed the street festival, the great music and the good company of your friends and colleagues, who shared their impressions on Twitter:


Diversity in Technology

In one of Summit’s most engaging sessions, Professor Jerry Kang UCLA’s vice chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, gave a passionate and knowledgeable presentation on implicit bias in a standing-room-only Diversity in Technology special event.

Everyone thinks they’re not biased. But we all are. With great energy and humor, Prof. Kang took a refreshing approach to a difficult subject, removing the emotional component for a nonjudgemental talk that used the language of statistics to unpack the science of bias.

The only way to be fair and square is to go into it assuming you will not be fair and square.

He opened with a discussion of automatic processing, explaining that changing your mindset is a matter of mindfulness. “The only way to be fair and square is to go into it assuming you will not be fair and square,” he said. He pointed to a study that shows women who attend single-sex colleges view themselves as leaders more than women who attend co-ed universities — not because of a feminist curriculum, he joked, but because they were exposed to more women in leadership positions, became accustomed to it, and assumed it was possible. “We are what we see,” he said.

For me, the most fascinating points came from a discussion about the biology of bees (no, really). In the hive, only the queen bee can reproduce. But queen bees are not born, Prof. Kang said, they are manufactured. The worker bees surround her with royal jelly, which triggers ovary development. So, he asked, who are you giving your royal jelly to? Who are you helping to develop or mentor?

The talk closed with a challenge to step outside of ourselves and take action. Have lunch with someone you’ve never had lunch with before. Make an effort to talk to people outside your circle. If you’re a people manager, give the stretch assignment. Even if they fail, the end result doesn’t matter because you’ve given the confidence to take on more challenges.

Prof. Kang was introduced by Donna Kimmel, Citrix SVP & chief people officer, who talked about how key Citrix culture points — courage and curiosity — drive us to take an internal look and have the courage to make a change. She brought it full circle after Professor Kang’s speech, affirming that diversity is a framer of Citrix culture and not just a talking point. It was such a meaningful event; I hope you enjoyed it.

Simply Serve @ Summit

Earlier in this post I told you about Bert Jacobs’ call to action for donations to the Life is Good’s Kids Foundation. Our partners and sales teams have bigger hearts than you can imagine, because in addition to that generous response, they’ve spent the week volunteering to help at-risk kids in our Simply Serve @ Summit on-site volunteer experience. It was the third Simply Serve at Summit, and participation has climbed each year, with 543 people this year—55% partners, 45% employees—assembling 150 kits to help middle school students in Title I schools build solar cars. Volunteers also spent time building solar wind turbines as well as literacy kits for children in elementary school.

Through partnership with the United Way of Orange County and UNICEF, these activities help young people envision a better future for themselves and highlight the Citrix commitment to STEM education. We’re also excited to be taking part in UNICEF Kid Power, which empowers kids to get active while helping kids around the world. Thank you to all who helped—you are doing good, and giving back.

Partner innovation

I’m thrilled to announce the 2017 Citrix Innovation Award for Partners winner, selected by Citrix Summit 2017 attendees and independent IT experts, is Fujitsu. Watch their incredible story at citrix.com/innovation, and meet the two other finalists — Atea Denmark and Envision IT in the U.S.— whose innovative use of Citrix solutions is both transformational and inspirational. The program is open to all Citrix Solution Advisor, Service Provider and SI partner organizations. Remember, you can continue to submit your innovation stories throughout the year for the 2018 Innovation Award for Partners program.

Hot Sessions

All week I’ve shared the day’s most popular sessions, and you can access them on demand in Citrix SalesIQ beginning February 6. Be sure to check out Wednesday’s top breakouts:

  • SELL111: Introducing XenApp Express: the fastest way to deliver apps from Azure
  • TECH303: Deep dive into the newest enterprise application deployments with NetScaler
  • TECH309: Clustering with NetScaler SDX appliances
  • CCSP203: Building hosted services on public or hybrid clouds

Save the Date

I say this every year, but it’s hard to believe that another Summit has ended. We packed so much training, networking and #CitrixPartnerLove into a few short days! Keep the momentum going with resources, including recorded sessions and speaker presentations, on Citrix SalesIQ, and bring your customers to Citrix Synergy 2017, in Orlando May 23–25. It’s a great opportunity to learn more about the shift to cloud and build relationships (and develop new deals) in an environment of learning and training. And don’t forget to save the date for Citrix Summit 2018, January 8–10 back here at the Anaheim Convention Center in California.

Stay connected – follow the Citrix Partner Network on LinkedIn, Facebook, and at @CitrixPartners on Twitter | Join the #CitrixSummit conversation

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