One of our "Power 100 Vendors"
Biography and Background:
Wendy Bahr is the Senior Vice President of Cisco's Global Partner Organization. She has responsibility for managing and supporting 55,000+ global partners who represent the company's primary route to market. Encompassing system integrators, value-added resellers, distributors, services partners, independent software vendors, and technology partners, this global connected partner ecosystem accounts for up to 85 percent of Cisco's revenue and is a unique differentiator in helping deliver business outcomes for customers and driving growth for Cisco. Bahr and her team are responsible for developing strategic initiatives and program innovations that create profitable growth and capacity for Cisco and its partners. With innovative solutions and services based on complementary technologies from Cisco and its partners, Bahr and her team ensure partners have the right capabilities and skills to serve existing and new market opportunities. Bahr previously lead the Americas Partner Organization for Cisco, which encompassed a team of nearly 600 employees and over 23,000 partners. In this role, she was responsible for partner enablement, partner profitability, and product and service sales growth with partners in Cisco's largest geographical region (United States, Canada, and Latin America).
How have you personally helped advance your company's channel business over the past year?
I sponsored several key initiatives designed to help our partners capture digital transformation opportunities and ensure ongoing relevance and competitiveness. These initiatives are already showing tremendous impact by helping our reseller partners match their capabilities with other ecosystem partners (ISVs, solution partners, etc.) to find new business opportunities together. Another initiative accelerates the time to market for their joint solutions. As this is a new go-to-market motion for many partners, my organization developed key activities and programs to accelerate this new route to market. These efforts have so far resulted in over 724 new business opportunities and $649M of net new business revenue. Customer lifecycle is a key capability to ensuring customer satisfaction and creating a more predictable recurring revenue model. Under my leadership, Cisco made significant investments in tools, training and resources that help our partners build their customer lifecycle practice. The Lifecycle Advantage program, for example, is a digital platform combining analytics, automation and personalized content. With this tool, partners can more effectively digitally manage the customer relationship and lifecycle. Partners who have used Lifecycle Advantage see up to four times higher reach, ten percent higher engagement and 45 percent higher renewal close rates.
What are your goals for your company's channel business over the next year?
1. Help our partners achieve growth and profitability in the ever-changing technology landscape. 2. Develop programs, tools, training and resources that enable our partners to evolve their business so they can capture digital transformation opportunities. Focus areas include Customer-in selling, customer lifecycle/software (recurring revenue) and professional services. 3. Continue to aggressively drive our strategic priorities, including: 1) making it easier for our partners to transact with Cisco; 2) ensuring our collective go-to-market engines are aligned around the same priorities; and 3) sharing an equitable exchange of value that is commensurate with the evolving technology landscape.
What honors, awards or commendations have you won over the past year?
Named one of CRN's 50 Most Influential Channel Chiefs for 2017 and recognized in the 2016 CRN Women of the Channel list.
Outside of your family, please name a woman you admire and why:
Madeleine Albright, America's first female Secretary of State. She is such an amazing impactful female leader, simultaneously raising three daughters, obtaining graduate degrees and ascending to distinguished positions in the academic, political and foreign policy establishments. She is a role model for being a strong-willed and outspoken problem-solver.
What advice would you give to young women who want to begin careers in technology?
If you love dynamic change and a fast paced work environment then a career in technology is right up your alley. The field is especially rewarding if you enjoy challenges and continuous learning. Each day is an opportunity to learn and impact how technology can change our experiences in business and in life. One guarantee about a career in technology is that the only constant is change. I encourage young women who have these driving passions to be ready to "show up, stand up and speak up" and help make the world a better place through the use of technology!
If you could be any movie character for one day in real life, who would you be and why?
Erin Brockovich, played by Julia Roberts. She is the epitome of smart, determined and relentless in her pursuit of her goal and being fearless about her worth and contribution.
If you could travel to a city you've never been to before, all expenses paid, where would you go and why?
Queenstown, New Zealand. My husband and I love the outdoors and playing golf. Queenstown Golf Club sits in the amphitheater of the Remarkable Mountains on what is internationally regarded as one of the most picturesque golf courses in the world. Visiting Queenstown and spending time hiking, biking, golfing and wine tasting would be a fantastic way to live my motto; work hard and play hard!
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