CRN 2018 Women of the Channel Details

Kim Leavitt

Director, Global Partner Marketing, Red Hat Inc

Location: Westford, MA


Number of years in current position: 1.5

Number of years involved with indirect sales: 25

Twitter Handle: @N/A

Fun Facts:

Has a female boss (or is top executive at company)
Has a mentor
Is a mentor
Loves Instagram
Has climbed a mountain
Can ride a horse
Likes playing video games
Has always wanted to be a teacher

Biography and Background:
Kim Leavitt is a global partner marketing manager at Red Hat. She is a focused, driven sales and marketing leader with extensive experience in building revenue, brand recognition, and market share through partner campaigns. Specializing in the highly competitive technology sector, Kim draws on product expertise, sound business instinct, horizontal and vertical solutions knowledge, and perceptive sales skills to identify and capitalize on high-growth opportunities. Currently she leads ongoing global marketing partnerships and oversees a team responsible for executing strategic marketing initiatives with global partners. Kim was also responsible for developing and launching Red Hat's Partner Solutions Initiative (PSI) to increase partner adoption of Red Hat's emerging technologies. Prior to joining Red Hat, Kim worked at Hewlett-Packard where she built a highly successful direct sales best practice and subsequently brought that experience to channel, vertical and competitive program marketing roles with increasing responsibility and authority. Kim was also responsible for positioning and marketing vertical partner solutions at HP. Kim's commitment to business growth to, through and with partners is a central theme to her career in IT.

How have you personally helped advance your company's channel business over the past year?
This year I have developed a new Partner Solutions Initiative (PSI) to assist Red Hat partners in vetting, discussing and taking joint global solutions to market. Often our partners focus on point product offerings. The initiative that I began last year assists the partner in positioning and selling, with a solution orientation. We are working with our partners to ensure they have the best tools to qualify, position and close end user customer solutions. These tools include guidance relative to identifying target customers, buyer personas, the competitive landscape, solution repeatability, the value chain and lifecycle of the solution. We also assist the partner in documenting the solution for GTM purposes with a partner and Red Hat blended value proposition with proof points. The partner community sees definite value of PSI and the program is very well received within Red Hat.

What are your goals for your company's channel business over the next year?
We have had a successful launch of the Partner Solutions Initiative (PSI) in FY18. Now we are offering the program to the entire Red Hat partner ecosystem. Our goal is to increase the number of partner solutions by 25% in Red Hat's FY19. PSI will increase the adoption and revenue potential of Red Hat's emerging products to, through and with our partners.

What honors, awards, or commendations have you won over the past year?
I won the Red Hat Meritocracy Award for my contributions to the Partner Experience Core Team. My knowledge of the Red Hat Partner Ecosystem, as well as my experience in driving the Global partner solution business through PSI was very valuable to the Partner Experience Core team in defining the partner lifecycle and partner program "gives and gets."

Outside of your family, please name a woman you admire and why:
Benazir Bhutto was the Prime Minister of Pakistan from 1988 -1990 and then again from 1993-1996. She spoke at a HP women's conference and her strength, and intelligence was mesmerizing. She clearly had fought adversity her entire life, including when her father was ousted in a military coup. I so admired her independence in a male dominated world. She stood strong, maintained her focus and stayed the course. Her strength lives on!

What advice would you give your 16-year-old self?
Continue to aim high, maintain your focus and be very clear about your career goals. Try to experience as much as you can and as many roles as possible in the world of business. Innovate new ideas to add value to the company you work for and the partners you work with. Always be relevant, true to yourself and enjoy the journey!

If you could master any new job-related skill, what would it be and why?
I've worked the sales/marketing aspect of the B2B value chain. It would be great to understand the operations side of an IT company. What are the business imperatives of the day-to-day operations of the company? There would also be a strategic element to the role and understanding the long-term product/solution direction of the company. Understanding the variables that continue to propel the company toward success and relevancy in the market.

What's the best book you read this past year and why did you like it?
Georgia Hunter's We Were the Lucky Ones - Georgia Hunter's family were survivors of the Holocaust. The bravery and hopefulness of this family was amazing! It really taught me that you never know how truly strong you are until tested. It's almost as if you were there, so well written.

Unedited Content Provided By Participants