CRN 2017 Women of the Channel Details

One of our "Power 100 Vendors"

Salena Butler

Vice President, Channels, Infor

Location: Minneapolis, MN


Number of years in current position: 6

Number of years involved with indirect sales: 14

Twitter Handle: @Infor

Fun Facts:

Has a female boss
Enjoys public speaking
Has worked for a solution provider organization
Has a mentor
Is a mentor
Loves Spotify
Has completed a marathon
Always wanted to be an Olympian

Biography and Background:
My career of working in the channel business started when I was in college. I took an internship one summer with a hardware and storage company out of Minneapolis and that is when I first was involved in channels. I was involved with creating a new channel program this company was rolling out to spur growth among their current partner community and attract new partners to the program. I continued that work for the company, as I earned my degree. After college, I landed a position with an aggressively growing software company in Minneapolis, MN. I worked my way up from a channel manager to ultimately running the channel business unit globally. I found a lot of success and satisfaction in restructuring, revitalizing and growing that channel business, so I decided to take on a similar challenge with a St. Paul based software provider, having the opportunity to recruit new partners and sell alongside the few strategic partners we had at the time. About 9 months in, that company was acquired by Infor. At Infor I've run multiple facets of the business, primarily within the manufacturing division, and have had the opportunity to run both the distribution and CRM teams.

How have you personally helped advance your company's channel business over the past year?
We are consistency looking for ways to make the relationships with our partners more successful and profitable at Infor. We also want to make doing business with us easier for our partners. There are a lot of moving pieces to a global company, especially with the aggressive growth targets we have. One way we have been able to make positive changes for our partners and to listen to the partner community is through our Partner Councils. I lead the NA Partner Council today. This council's mission is to help prioritize the top areas we need to improve. This feedback and structure has been, and will continue, to help Infor make positive change for our partner community.

What are your goals for your company's channel business over the next year?
My first goal is to continue to invest in my team. I have a very talented team of RVPs that manage the NA partner business. My number one priority is to try to clear as many hurdles for them as possible so they can be successful. The second goal is to make our partner's lives easier and to truly make doing business with Infor as easy as possible. The more profitable we can make our business relationships for the partners, the better. Of course, revenue growth is another huge driver this year.

What honors, awards or commendations have you won over the past year?
Last year I was awarded "Women of the Channel 2016". I think this is my 5th time receiving this award over the years. Each year it is a surprise and honor.

Outside of your family, please name a woman you admire and why:
When I think of a woman I admire, I look back to my high school days, actually. I had an amazing coach over those years that taught me how to take my passion to the next level and compete to win. She gave me a lot of confidence in my ability early on. I admire her because she gave up a lot of hours to help find something in me that I didn't see and she coached me along. That is probably why I like being a manager so much and why I find pleasure in helping others succeed.

What advice would you give to young women who want to begin careers in technology?
I think it is an exciting time to be a woman in IT. When I started, there were very few women sitting around the conference room but now we are seeing an emergence of woman leaders. My advice to young woman is to be aggressive, take it all in, and work hard early in your career. The work will pay off and it will get you in a position to have a family someday, if that is what you want to do, without having to sacrifice too much. Of course, finding balance in anything you do, is key.

If you could be any movie character for one day in real life, who would you be and why?
If I could be a movie character for one day I would be "Officer Judy Hopps", from Zootopia. (Can you tell I have kids?). Judy looks at the world in a positive way, trying to find the best in people. After learning a few tough lessons, she definitely gets wiser, but it doesn't break her spirit. She is a "glass half full" kind of lady and has the infectious personality and will to get the job done, no matter how daunting the task may be.

If you could travel to a city you've never been to before, all expenses paid, where would you go and why?
It is hard for me to pick one city, so I'm going to pick a continent! I would love to go to South America, namely Chile and Brazil. My husband and I love outdoors and exploring the natural wonders of the world. This trip would be heavenly for us and would give us a lot of options for exploring.

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