Why I Joined the Channel: A 23-Year-Old’s Take on Our Industry
… I didn’t have to prove myself or have to break through the resistance of people older than me.”
But statistics show that traditional channel partners are stuck in their old ways. I recall asking a couple of years ago why consultants weren’t considered part of the channel ecosystem. It seemed that they were the definition of a trusted adviser. But strangely, most of the industry experts I interviewed either pooh-poohed the idea or simply didn’t have a category for it.
But our industry is paying a price for our fixed mindset. Our uniformity and lack of flexibility – oh, and not to mention our incessant use of acronym-saturated technobabble (of which I am guilty) – keep us from reaching new customers.
Telarus CEO Adam Edwards threw out this number – 60 percent – for the number of VARs that will go out of business.
“The broader channel is aging out,” Jay McBain said. “We’re not having a funnel of new people come in and start companies fast enough to replace those that are retiring.”
It’s the opinion of Channel NX2Z members that every aspect of our ecosystem needs to evolve. We’ve assembled a team of that, in our view, represents a diverse array of channel companies. Galina Marcus of LANtelligence comes from the vendor side and brings to the table a strong vision for the future of our industry. TBI’s Bryan Reynolds and Caitlin Birck, and WTG’s Erik Prentice are making waves in the master-agent community. And business owners Sundandini Verma and Catch Cloud‘s Kyle Burt are working on the front lines. They’ll share their insights with entrepreneurs at the upcoming Channel Partners Evolution Business Innovation Hackathon.
These are some of the young people that want to make a difference, in addition to the Gen Xers and baby boomers whose mentorship and advice we need badly. We’re all in this together, and the goal is not to replace our older counterparts, but to walk alongside them, teaching and learning from one another.
I see plenty of companies in our industry that are buying in. HTG 360 CEO Chris Ichelson told me that his company hopes to expand its internship program to become a key source of talent acquisition. Master agent Intelisys has been highlighting millennial all-stars with the NextGen Channel group. And the millennial meet-up at our spring show saw multiple young faces who came to the event for the first time on behalf of their companies.
There’s a movement going on here, and it’s exciting to be part of it.
#CPEvolution speaker spotlight🔦: @aaronleveston Co-Founder of Channel NX2Z & National Account Manager at @RingCentral will discuss how to harness the motivations of recent IT grads in “Channel NX2Z Workforce of the Future Symposium” Oct. 10 >> https://t.co/GyGtsIVypQpic.twitter.com/V0ef3HK7Ja
— Channel Partners (@Channel_Online) September 7, 2018
Join us for the Channel NX2Z Career Symposium, Oct. 10, at Channel Partners Evolution. There you’ll hear from me, Channel NX2Z co-founder Aaron Leveston and a multigenerational panel of people that are passionate about the transformation of our industry.