Leadership Styles Take Shape Over a Lifetime

Resilience is an essential characteristic to help partners adapt.

Claudia Adrien

March 31, 2022

3 Min Read
Leadership Styles Take Shape Over a Lifetime

Leadership styles vary but defining leadership itself may come down to one essential definition by W.C.H. Prentice from 1961. The Harvard Business Review sums it up. A “successful leader [is] one who can understand people’s motivations and enlist employee participation in a way that marries individual needs and interest to the group’s purpose.” But what makes successful leaders effective in this process? And how do they develop their styles?


wiseHer’s Kathryn Rose

Kathryn Rose may have the answers. Rose is the founding CEO of channelWise (a division of wiseHer) which provides on-demand expert advice for MSPs, VARs and other partners in the IT channel to accelerate business growth. She’s also an international keynote speaker and best-selling author. Rose will be one of three panelists for the All Star Session: Be the Best Leader You Can  at the Channel Partners Conference & Expo, April 11-14, in Las Vegas. To preview the session, Channel Futures spoke to Rose about her skills as a leader and why great leaders are lifelong learners.

Channel Futures: What skills do leaders of channel organizations need to possess?

Kathryn Rose: Channel leaders need to possess a variety of skills, including the following:

  • Empathy. That is the ability to see beyond themselves and their organization. If you help people do more business, they will do more business with you.

  • A spirit of collaboration. In the channel you are really in it together; you have to make sure you are supporting your partners by being a good partner.

  • Integrity. Do what you say you will do.

  • Resilience. Things are moving and changing consistently. How are you helping your partners adapt?

CF: How does one future-proof their skills to steer an organization forward?

KR: By being a lifelong learner. You cannot possibly steer an organization forward if your skills are not up to date. I run a technology company and I have no formal code training. I decided to learn enough to be dangerous. Also, I learned enough about how to manage a tech team to steer them in the right direction. No one expects you to know it all or how everything is done — that is why you have a team. However, they do expect you to know enough to give the direction needed for them to succeed.

Kathryn Rose is one of more than 100 top speakers at the Channel Partners Conference & Expo/MSP Summit. Register now to join 6,500 fellow attendees, April 11-14. You can also interact with more than 300 key suppliers and technology service distributors.

CF: How have your decades of experience shaped your leadership abilities?

KR: I have lived through market upswings and crashes, the dot-com boom and bust, inflation and deflation, personal triumphs and tragedies. Every single one I took the lessons learned and applied them to my leadership style. I am definitely a better leader than I was 10 years ago. You have to be willing to learn from your experiences and see the positive ways you can have an impact.

CF: What do you hope attendees can learn and make use of from your session?

KR: Leadership is a journey, not a destination. The channel is unique in that you are leading internally as well as externally. We’ll be discussing the challenges and how to overcome them. I hope they come away with how to really assess your own strengths and weaknesses and why that’s important for being a good leader.

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email Claudia Adrien or connect with her on LinkedIn.


Read more about:


About the Author(s)

Claudia Adrien

Claudia Adrien is a reporter for Channel Futures where she covers breaking news. Prior to Informa, she wrote about biosecurity and infectious disease for a national publication. She holds a degree in journalism from the University of Florida and resides in Tampa.

Free Newsletters for the Channel
Register for Your Free Newsletter Now

You May Also Like