Another big executive change at Microsoft (MSFT), and this one will directly impact partners: Phil Sorgen will succeed Jon Roskill as the software giant's partner program leader, effective Sept. 1. It sounds like Roskill will shift to a product-related post. Sorgen moves in just Microsoft is kicking off its search for CEO Steve Ballmer's successor. So what's the partner impact from this latest change?
Roskill wasn't a good channel chief. Rather, he was great. Admittedly, Microsoft stumbled multiple times with partners in recent years. The initial Office 365 partner program lacked cloud billing capabilities for partners. The Surface Pro and RT tablet launches had no punch for partners.
But The VAR Guy always sensed Roskill was working hard to correct the issues. Our resident blogger's hunch: Ballmer always wanted a more direct relationship with customers -- mirroring portions of the Apple and Google models especially as cloud and mobile took off. But partner feedback, championed by Roskill, often pushed Microsoft's channel efforts in the right direction -- even if the changes came about a bit too slowly.
So who is Phil Sorgen? The 17-year Microsoft veteran has focused on everything from enterprise to small business. Most recently, he was a member of Microsoft's worldwide Small and Midmarket Solutions and Partners (SMS&P) extended leadership team. That's good news for partners.
Amid the executive shift, Microsoft has posted this prepared Q&A with Sorgen.
What changes would The VAR Guy like to see Sorgen implement? Here are 10 of them...