CRN 2017 Women of the Channel Details

Jill Warren

Director of Network Services, Powernet

Location: Cincinnati, OH


Number of years in current position: 4

Number of years involved with indirect sales: 13

Twitter Handle: @PowernetJill

Fun Facts:

Has a female boss
Enjoys public speaking
Has worked for a solution provider organization

Biography and Background:
Jill has been in the Telecom/IT/Technology industry for 20 years. She started out working as a paralegal at a law firm which allowed her to utilize her degree, but then decided to make the switch to telecommunications. Jill began her telecom career at Centurylink where she stayed for seven years. While at Century link, Jill started working with order entry, eventually moving into an Account Management role. Supporting customers from start to finish with the implementation of their services while ensuring they had a great experience throughout the process became Jill's passion. In 2004 she found herself at Powernet. Powernet had an Agent channel without any real support for the business client. She took her experience and helped implement the service management department. This department ensures our agents have a group that they can bring all their customers to that will help with any needs they have. Today, Jill directs a team of 15 Account Managers and Field Engineers that strive to provide customers with the best customer experience possible.

How have you personally helped advance your company's channel business over the past year?
The biggest influence I have had on Powernet's channel business in the last year would be the implementation of other technological products and services that help add a new dimension to our offering aside from just voice services. The industry has become a race to zero as far as rate per minute type products, therefore we had to adapt to allow both our agents and the company to be successful. We've implemented technology based products such as MDU and PowerWAN. We not only offer these products, but we assist our agent channel in understanding this new technology as these changes can be scary, especially if you are used to only selling minutes.

What are your goals for your company's channel business over the next year?
My goals for Powernet and our channel business are to help our agent base understand the new technology shift and change the way they are selling to customers. We need our agents to understand that we are a technology partner, not just a facility based CLEC anymore. I want to partner with our channel business and help them to sell all products and services into their customer base.

What honors, awards or commendations have you won over the past year?

Outside of your family, please name a woman you admire and why:
The woman I admire most is Allison Stevens, CEO of Powernet. It is really hard to be a woman in this industry, however, she manages to be confident and successful every day. Since she has taken over as CEO, she has bravely taken the company focus in a completely different direction. Allison spearheaded the movement away from a minutes based CLEC to a technology partner. She understands the business we are in is changing and is making the right decisions every day to ensure Powernet and our channel business remains successful during this change.

What advice would you give to young women who want to begin careers in technology?
Push yourself. Take risks and be confident in your ability. Remain calm when things don't go as planned. Take your time and weigh the risks before making decisions. At the end of the day, these things are what will separate you and your ability from others.

If you could be any movie character for one day in real life, who would you be and why?
Indiana Jones! I believe he has the dream job. I always wanted to be an archeologist (Not sure how I went from that to IT!) He is smart and has so many adventures. He manages to get himself out of desperate situations over and over again. He also gets to travel to the most interesting places! His ability to make the right decision on the fly is incredible. And let's face it, he is the only guy to ever truly pull off a fedora.

If you could travel to a city you've never been to before, all expenses paid, where would you go and why?
I would go to Cairo (Giza) Egypt. As I said before, I've always wanted to be an archeologist, but when I went to school I quickly found out that was a rich person's job and clearly not something I could do. I want to see all the history the city has to offer. I'd love to learn about the culture and see the pyramids of course! I mean, seriously, would I pick any other place since I want to be Indiana Jones!?

Unedited Content Provided By Participants