This blog post is the first in a series covering the Citrix core values and their relevance for our partner ecosystem, both at a high level and on a day-to-day basis.
I’ve said it multiple times, but it’s worth repeating: the Citrix experience is a special one whether you’re a customer, a partner or a Citrix employee. There’s a certain “oneness” or commonality to the journey we’ve been on, the way that we treat each other, and the genuine desire to help each other succeed. I truly believe that Citrix’ culture is driven by our core values.
A company’s values are a snapshot of its culture, standards, and brand identity. Ideally, these values will periodically change to reflect the evolution of the organization as it grows, matures, and establishes new goals. That’s why our Citrix core values now include two new concepts.
As our CEO Kirill Tatarinov explained, “We added Curiosity and Courage to our core enduring values — to remind us to always be on the lookout for what’s next and to be bold in our pursuit of excellence.” These values, together with Respect, Integrity and Unity, are fundamental to our long history and continued success in the IT industry.
The Value of Corporate Values
Corporate values can serve multiple purposes, among them:
- Aspirational: Values set high expectations that employees and partners aim for.
- Practical: They provide guidance for how to treat people and how to do business.
- Cultural: Core values serve as a way to unite everyone in the organization, and to set the company apart from others.
Citrix Values and the Partner Ecosystem
As a partner-first company, Citrix relies on our core values as guidelines for every aspect of our relationship with the global partner ecosystem, including:
- How we collaborate with partners, strategically and tactically, to win together;
- What we expect from each other (and what we deliver in return), and;
- How we resolve differences to better serve customers and achieve mutual success
Each one of the five values brings a unique aspect to our partnerships. In this blog series, I’d like to share what our values mean to us and how, as our “north star,” they help shape our distinctive culture.
1. Integrity: We act with honesty and hold each other accountable
Partners and Citrix hold each other accountable for actively contributing to joint success. Partners are expected to invest in Citrix (by getting trained on our technologies, conducting marketing activities, etc.) and Citrix is expected to deliver high-quality products, financial rewards, enablement programs, and sales support.
Acting with honesty means we are open and upfront with each other. Both sides need to resist the temptation to put their own interests first, such as meeting with the customer without including the other party.
2. Respect: We are open, inclusive, and empathetic
Citrix actively and continuously solicits input from the partner community so we can strengthen our relationships, solve issues, and drive joint success. Our goal is to be collaborative, rather than unilaterally dictating terms and requirements to partners.
I’ve found that within the partner community, respect also means honoring the other side’s idea of success, even if it conflicts with your own, and working to find a solution. For example, a partner might want to extend a proof of concept to resolve some minor issues, while Citrix might feel the project is ready to move into production. It’s critical to reach a compromise that takes all objectives — especially the customer’s goals – into account.
3. Curiosity: We are continuously learning, innovating, and improving
Partner feedback on customer needs and preferences helps us continue to develop and fine-tune targeted solutions that, in turn, lead to new deals. We are genuinely interested in hearing about what works — and what doesn’t. This input helps to guide our experimentation with new technologies and programs, and to make a course correction if warranted. In any case, we believe curiosity is fundamental to ongoing innovation, including improvements to our partnerships.
4. Courage: We dream big and are bold and selfless in pursuit of those dreams
We take aim at lucrative new markets (such as the mid-market space and cloud services) and give our partners the tools and incentives to pursue them. In particular, our pivot to the cloud represents a big shift in how we recognize revenues — from traditional licensing to services delivery — and, as such, is a calculated risk. Similarly, the mid-market is a big departure from our historical focus on the enterprise, but it offers enormous potential.
Courage also plays a role in how we apply partner, customer, and industry feedback to improve ourselves individually and as an organization. We are not afraid to admit mistakes and to make changes that improve the business to benefit Citrix and our partners. For example, to refocus on our core competencies, we spun off the GoTo portfolio of SaaS solutions.
5. Unity: We collaborate to win together
Citrix recognizes the huge value of partners’ primary relationships with end customers — whether it’s a global systems integrator team at a large enterprise or a regional partner that has won the trust of their customer. We help foster these relationships with technical, marketing, sales, education and support resources.
We also bring different types of partners together to offer our customers comprehensive solutions. Examples include the Citrix Ready HCI Workspace Appliance program, which enables hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) appliances from our hardware and storage partners to connect to Citrix Cloud to automate setup and maintenance of the XenApp and XenDesktop Service. Another is the incorporation of public cloud services, such as Microsoft Azure. They complement Citrix Cloud Services and expand customer options.
Living Our Values
We know our values can’t stand alone. They must be backed up with actions and made a real part of how we operate every day. They also need to reflect what is actually going on at the organization so there’s no disconnect between words and actions. For example, a company that values unity must avoid permitting its sales force or consulting team to compete with partners for business. We also need to recognize when we inadvertently stray from our core values and do something about it to make it right. This special Citrix experience is all of our responsibility and it’s up to us to preserve this great experience that we share.
That’s one important reason why we’re telling the story of Citrix values through this blog series – because our values are as critical to the way we do business with our partners as they are in maintaining our special culture.
Stay tuned for the next installment, which will focus on the value of Integrity and what it means for us and our partnerships. See you then!
Craig Stilwell, Worldwide VP of Partner Sales & Strategy, has more than 23 years of technology experience, including more than 17 years at Citrix, most recently serving as Area Vice President of our U.S. Commercial business responsible for all sales and products in the U.S. Commercial segment. Previously, Craig served in several roles at Citrix, notably as Vice President of Americas Channel Sales & Field Operations.
Connect with Craig on Twitter: @CraigTStilwell
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