As part of my new-hire onboarding eight months ago, I learned about Citrix’s core values. Every company has them, but what surprised me most was that, at Citrix, we actually live them.
In my short tenure here, I’ve seen this company stand up for so many initiatives tied to our values. From our expansion of parental leave, to our inclusive practices that won us the Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality three years running, to our innovative partnerships with organizations like Girls Who Code that focus on closing the gender gap in technology.
Citrix is filled with smart, interesting people who are respected for the unique perspective and experience they bring into the workplace. And in the partner organization, this culture of integrity, curiosity, and courage fosters exceptional leadership and excellence among the team.
This leadership and excellence is exemplified by eight Citrix leaders named to CRN’s 2019 Women of the Channel list. Hear directly from our honorees about their passion for working with partners — and how their Citrix values, put into action, inspire their colleagues each and every day.
What Women of the Channel Love Most About Partners — and What Their Teams Love Most About Them
“Polly Weiss is the glue that holds one of our largest partners together,” says Julia Scully, Director, Partner Account Manager, Americas Channel Services. “With her many years of experience and expertise in the channel, she is always sharing and uplifting others on how to be successful and achieve their goals.”
With 16 years of experience in the channel, Polly Weiss, National Partner Manager, leads her team in consistent, top-to-bottom engagement with Citrix’s largest partners. She joins the Women of the Channel for the third year in a row, and partners she manages were named Citrix Commercial Partner of the Year and Citrix U.S. Public Sector Partner of the Year
“What I love about working with partners is the enthusiasm they have around our Workspace solution and the move towards intelligent capabilities,” Polly says. “It provides huge benefits to their customer’s end users and IT.”
This is also the third year Elke Ringler, Senior Manager, Distribution & Cloud Partner Central Europe, has been included on the Women of the Channel list. This 19-year Citrix veteran has long track record creating success for her Citrix partner team. Elke was pivotal in preparing partners for a cloud-first strategy and winning “born in the cloud” partners.
“What I love most about Citrix partners is the holistic perspective and insight they bring into end customers,” Elke says. “They are an extremely valuable extension of the sales force, as well as trusted advisors for the end customers, and committed business partners for Citrix. They sometimes challenge us — and that makes us even better.”
“Elke is an inspiring leader who impacts a lot of people with her positive attitude and good humor,” says Patricia Hefti, Distribution Account Manager, Switzerland. “Not only does she have a clear direction about what we want to achieve and how we can move forward, but she always takes the time to motivate me and to make sure that I am able to improve myself. She wants me to feel engaged and supported at work and is able to remove the barriers if needed to have a chat about a private situation. It’s great working with her.”
For five years straight, Donna Buffett, Senior Director, Worldwide Partner Enablement, has graced the Women of the Channel list for her exceptional work supporting Citrix partners and developing strategies that ensure we win together. Donna was awarded the Citrix Globetrotter award for developing and delivering training to distributors and resellers worldwide. Four members of her team were also honored for their achievements.
“Donna Buffett couldn’t be a better manager,” says Rose Cicala, Worldwide Partner Enablement Manager, WW Partner Sales and Services. “She’s both an expert on the channel and she truly cares about her team and their individual growth. It’s great to know that I always have someone to support me when I need it. No matter the challenge, Donna is always willing to help.”
Women of the Channel on Why Organizations Should Partner with Citrix
Over the last year, Women of the Channel honoree, Tricia Atchison, Group Director, Worldwide Partner Enablement & Marketing, brought her 22 years of channel experience to bear in developing deeper relationships with key partners across various routes to market and helping those partners make the most of their investment. She was also named to CRN’s elite Power 100 for her unparalleled influence in driving channel success to new heights.
“Tricia is a leader who leads by example and her insight into the intersection between our priorities and the business of our partners is what will help us differentiate what we do in the future,” says Marcio Moerbeck, Director of Worldwide Channel Marketing, Partner Strategy. “Her experience in the channel gives our team a better understanding of our partners and how we can help them.”
Women of the Channel recipient Maria Fernandez-Quera, Director, WW Partner Operations was a driving force this year in modeling, designing, and executing new processes and system changes that supported a completely streamlined partner program — and ensured that partners had the best possible experience with Citrix.
“Working with Maria has been an incredible experience,” says Kavitha Megalageri, Senior Worldwide Partner Operations Analyst. “Maria takes great care in developing her team members and has unparalleled work ethic. She’s very supportive and has been extremely gracious in seeing that I get exposure to the broader organization. I am constantly inspired by her integrity and passion. I hope to emulate many of her leadership qualities as I grow within Citrix.”
In 2018, Christy Vega, Director, Education Services, led her team to 108 percent global attainment of education sales and services, including direct and partner channel sales. This is her second year on Women of the Channel. She was also honored in 2018 on CRN’s 100 People You Don’t Know but Should for her work as an under-the-radar player who makes sure channel business gets done.
“In education, our goal is to ensure those who invest in Citrix technology maximize their ROI,” Christy says. “Through our services, partners realize higher team productivity, end-user adoption, and overall utilization of features. We are more than just the path to get certified.”
“From sales to marketing to content development, Christy leaves no stone unturned to ensure her team is successful,” says her colleague Martin Lee, Lead Education Field Manager, Curriculum Management. “Christy makes certain that our customers are always provided with an extraordinary experience.”
Women of the Channel Share Advice for Women in Tech
Hao Le, Director, WW Partner Communications, was named to CRN’s 2019 Women of the Channel this year for her ceaseless advocacy in ensuring that the stories of cloud success and innovation reach the global partner community.
“Hao’s authentic passion, robust knowledge and dedication to success are just a few of the many qualities that make her an exceptional leader,” says Ashley Massone Testa, Worldwide Partner Communications Manager. “She’s not only my manager but also a mentor who inspires me to work hard, grow in my career, and expand my skills. Hao continuously strives to improve and innovate our channel communications to deliver a best in class experience to our partners and drive amazing results for Citrix.”
Danielle Jennings, Senior Manager of Worldwide Partner Enablement, is honored this year as part of CRN’s 2019 Women of the Channel for her instrumental role in driving channel sales over the past year, including restructuring the Citrix Partner Account Manager role.
“When I started in technology over 11 years ago, I recall a colleague commenting on how hard it must be to be a woman in such a male-dominated industry. It opened my eyes that many saw this as a disadvantage,” Danielle says. “But my advice to women in IT would be to never view yourself as an underdog. Enter every room, meeting, and situation knowing you deserve to be there just as much — if not more — than the next .”
“Danielle’s experience as a Partner Account Manager, as well as her deep knowledge of the two-tier channel distribution model, is the perfect mix to drive innovation and growth,” says Stephanie Tunis, World Wide Channel Enablement Manager. “Her passion for creating a positive partner experience is truly inspiring. I personally have learned so much from Danielle about how to successfully enable both PAMs and Partners within the Citrix Channel.”
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