Microsoft Taps Longtime Vet to Lead U.S. Partner OrganizationMicrosoft Taps Longtime Vet to Lead U.S. Partner Organization
Veteran Microsoft execs Julia White and Brad Anderson are departing.
January 22, 2021
Tyler Bryson is the new leader of the Microsoft partner organization in the U.S. Bryson replaces Dave Willis as corporate VP of Microsoft’s U.S. Partner Group.
Microsoft’s Tyler Bryson
Willis said in December that he would leave Microsoft after 28 years. At the time, Willis said that he would remain through January. Willis has led the U.S. group since 2017 and he held numerous other partner-facing roles at Microsoft. Among them, Willis led the U.S. Small and Midmarket Solutions & Partners (SM&P) group and the U.S. Dynamics business. Willis did not say he is retiring, but he also did not indicate that he is imminently joining another company.
“My mantra has always been ‘work hard, play hard,’ and I’ll be shifting my balance from less work to more play, as I spend much more of my time on passions,” Willis wrote when he announced his departure.
Microsoft partners saw Willis as an ally.
“I’m glad we had the chance to work together and I hope we get the chance again,” Mike Gillis principal owner of RSM US said in a comment on Willis’ post.
Jeff Shuey, a longtime Microsoft partner who is now a principal project manager at Oracle, offered a similar sentiment.
Here’s our list of channel people on the move in December.
“Wow, you have made a huge impact that will be felt for years to come,” Shuey commented.
New U.S. Partner Lead Also a Microsoft Veteran
Bryson might be a newer face to the Microsoft partner organization, but he is also a 20-year company veteran. Before moving into the role Willis is exiting, Bryson was VP of Microsoft’s small, medium and corporate segments. Earlier this week, Bryson shared a brief video introducing himself to the U.S. Microsoft partner community.
“I’m so honored and excited to work with you and get to know you and your businesses,” Bryson said. “I can’t wait to get your feedback on areas where we can improve and get out and work with you, with your customers, to help us grow.”
On Twitter, Microsoft partners welcomed him to his new role.
“Looking forward to partnering again in US under your leadership,” said Kartik Shah, CEO of Bitscape, the boutique consulting and project services firm focused on Microsoft technologies.
“Great leader,” tweeted David Gersten, practice manager for Microsoft Dynamics at Dynamic Consulting.
Julia White and Brad Anderson Departing Microsoft
Willis isn’t the only longtime Microsoft executive leaving the company. Corporate VPs Brad Anderson and Julia White last week said they are moving on. White is joining SAP’s executive board as chief marketing and solutions officer. White’s job is to boost SAP’s go-to-market emphasis on products, industry solutions and digital marketing. Also, White will play a role in bringing customers and SAP’s ecosystem together — and with product development.
Microsoft’s Julia White
“SAP is going through a critical transformation,” White said, referring to SAP’s expedited emphasis on cloud migration. “It has a unique opportunity to help redefine how successful businesses run, and the leadership team has made bold and courageous commitments to accelerate their cloud innovation to this end.”
In a LinkedIn post announcing her move last week, White said the decision to leave Microsoft was difficult.
“It’s truly been a remarkable journey,” she said. “Despite everything going on in the world, digital transformation remains a top need for customers and SAP has a very unique opportunity to help customers on this journey.”
Anderson, corporate VP for commercial management experiences, will become president of product and services at Qualtrics. Acquired two years ago by SAP for $8 billion, the company is set to spin off Qualtrics next week in an IPO. Qualtrics provides one of the leading new experience management platforms.
“I am all-in on the mission of Qualtrics to help organizations design breakthrough experiences and continuously improve them,” Anderson wrote in a LinkedIn post announcing his move.
In his 17 years at Microsoft, Anderson played a key role in advancing Microsoft 365, commercial Windows device management, and server systems and management. Before joining Microsoft, Anderson was on the executive team at Novell, where he led engineering of the company’s ZENworks PC and server management tools.
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