2022 WOTC blog header

Every year, CRN recognizes nearly 1,400 women for incredible accomplishments within the IT channel. The Women of the Channel (WOTC) award acknowledges women who go above and beyond to support and foster close relationships with partners, bring innovative channel initiatives to the forefront, and whose insight and influence continue to drive channel success. This year, Mitel is proud to have six North American channel leaders on the list: Sue Anders, Misty Hanvey, Fiona Hills, Lana King, Jessica Maria, and Sara Wilde.

These women made amazing strides in growing Mitel’s relationship with our partners and distributors while developing and accelerating business strategies and comprehensive solutions within the industry. Mitel is fortunate to have so many capable and dedicated leaders that work to enhance our organization, partner, and customer experiences. In honor of this star lineup, we would like to take a moment to spotlight each of these women and their achievements.

 

Sue Anders, Regional VP, Northeast Vertical and Field Sales

Sue Anders is Regional Vice President for Mitel’s Northeast Region and U.S. Hospitality business. She is a 30+ year Mitel veteran and an accomplished, results-oriented sales leader with extensive experience developing profitable sales strategies for the partner channel. She has a proven track record of driving results in the U.S. public sector and healthcare markets. Sue leads a robust portfolio of government contracts that drive growth and success for Mitel’s channel partners.

Sue is a high-energy, driven, and passionate team leader, and her supportive and motivational management style inspires sales and channel teams to perform at the highest level. An effective negotiator and trusted advisor, she excels in developing long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with channel partners, sales teams, and end-users. In her time at Mitel, Sue has created and implemented many successful channel-focused government selling agent programs to educate and enable Mitel’s channel partners to strengthen their go-to-market strategy. She had this to say on what the CRN WOTC award means to her:

“It is a huge honor and privilege to work beside and learn from all of the AMAZING women at Mitel. I am beyond humbled and so very grateful to receive recognition for doing what I love with the best partners in the channel and our ROCKSTAR sales, engineering, and marketing teams. The best is yet come, Mitel Family!”

During the pandemic, Sue implemented programs to educate partners on CARES Act funding as well as Mitel’s extensive public sector contract portfolio to assist customers in procurement on a state-by-state basis. As lockdowns continued, she drove sales and marketing incentives as well as product bundles designed to support public sector organizations with the transition to remote work. She established forums for partners and customers to learn about Mitel solutions and financing options that would help customers navigate the ever-changing landscape and budget shortfalls. Sue has also consistently delivered contract revenue growth of 10-15% increase year over year, an achievement that has earned her Mitel President’s Club status. She has also taken on a role as an inspirational leader dedicated to “Motivating at Mitel” through emails to sales teams, for “Motivating your Monday,” and “Feel Good Fridays.” Sue provided some advice to other leaders about the principles she lives by and values:

“It's nice to be important, but it is so much more important to be NICE. Don't work for the recognition but do work worthy of recognition. Do what you say and say what you mean. Integrity is everything!" 

 

Misty Hanvey headshot

Misty Hanvey, Senior Manager, Global Channel Program

Misty Hanvey is Senior Manger on Mitel’s Global Partner Program team, and with 18 years of global channel experience, has demonstrated success across various areas with a focus on the development and management of channel programs and tools. Misty has also worked in channel marketing and channel operations, which gives her a distinctive insight into complementary areas of the business and has provided her further experience in demand generation, Marketing as a Service, and CRM management. Having lived in the United Kingdom for eight years after completing her MBA in London, Misty brings a global perspective to her role. Her long tenure working in the channel with Mitel and various competitors has afforded her extensive experience in managing global partner programs and benefits including joint marketing funds (JMF), market development funds, retail commissions, deal registration, exclusivity rebates, growth rebates, and vertical rebates. 

Misty strives to exceed in collaboration by working cross functionally with sales, marketing, finance, operations, and training to ensure the success of the channel. She values being part of a strong team that motivates her daily and having the support of leaders and peers that inspire her to continually learn and elevate her goals. Being part of a diverse team also helps her to think outside of the box for ways to continually develop herself and the programs she manages.

“Collaboration and support are two of my deeply embedded goals.  I have managed many channel benefits all with the goal of mutual revenue growth and success of channel partners.  Building a career based on collaboration and support of channel partners is an achievement I am incredibly proud of.”

In her time at Mitel, Misty has overseen the launch of a new marketing funds program, Distributor Development Funds, specifically for our distribution partners. The program enables our Mitel distributors to develop and create awareness for the Mitel message within their existing and future partner network. As the global JMF program manager, she managed enhancements to Mitel’s JMF portal that promote ease of use for both partners and internal stakeholders. She also managed the introduction of new functionality that enhances the capture of JMF return on investment (ROI) for all lead generation JMF activities by tracking JMF opportunities through the lead registration process in addition to other established methods. 

“I have been fortunate to have very strong leaders in my career that have prioritized my growth and career goals.  I encourage everyone to seek an avid mentor and to actively soak up valuable experiences from your mentor. In my opinion, it is imperative to invest in yourself by continually identifying your learning needs, setting goals for yourself, seeking out learning resources and persistently evaluating your knowledge to pinpoint areas of expertise required to enhance your growth.”

Fiona Hills, Director, Global Partner Program

Fiona Hills leads the development and execution of Mitel’s Global Partner Program for the Americas region. With more than 20 years of channel experience, there are few partner-facing initiatives that Fiona hasn't tackled at some point in her career. With a proven track record in a wide variety of program development and management activities including partner programs, deal registration, JMF, back-end rebates, business development funds, sales incentives, promotions, and more. She spent several years in Field Marketing Management which allowed her to develop strategy and execute demand generation programs while working directly with our internal sales teams and partners.

Fiona has a hands-on approach to formulating programs to drive engagement and increase sales. Before her long tenure with Mitel, she worked for one of Canada's top Mitel solution providers. This experience allowed her to see the challenges faced by both the value-added reseller and the vendor. This unique perspective is a key component of the value she brings to the table as a channel expert today. Fiona had this to say about what she loves about her role:

“I am a people person and enjoy the interaction of teamwork. Finding common ground while developing a solution or working towards a goal is highly motivating. Measuring project outcomes is always interesting. All projects need postmortem review to ensure ongoing improvement. Often, we are too busy and onto the next big thing without taking a moment to review our successes and failures.”

Recently promoted to her role as a Director, Fiona embraced the opportunities for growth presented by team leadership. Under her leadership, Mitel’s Global Partner Program evolved to reward partners for their investments in education for both sales and technical competencies, driving a positive end-to-end experience for customers. Her team also delivered several key channel initiatives including a new deal registration program, enhanced competency points structure, partner-facing dashboard enhancements, and improved communication touchpoints for internal and external stakeholders. Here’s Fiona’s advice for women entering the channel:

“Don't doubt yourself! The channel offers many opportunities to try new things and speaks to a variety of skill sets. Some people prefer to be in the background with tool change development or enhancing user interfaces, while others enjoy the limelight of speaking engagements or direct partner interactions. All these aspects come together to create positive partner experiences, and both are equally and vitally important."

Lana King, VP, Partner Programs, Training & Enablement

Lana King is Mitel’s Vice President of Partner Program, Training and Enablement. With 20 years of experience in the high-tech industry, she is a driving force behind Mitel’s channel programs and enablement, successfully leading change management programs for new partner portals and tools that enable partners to manage their Mitel customers more effectively, as well as championing focus groups to gain partner input on the overall partner experience. Her main goals are to help partners deepen their engagement with customers throughout the customer journey; understanding their communication needs and how Mitel’s solutions can help solve their business challenges, thereby enabling our partners to be their customer’s most trusted advisor. To support this initiative, Lana implements and develops programs, enablement resources, and customer lifecycle management measurements.

“The scope of my role allows me to be involved in many cross-functional initiatives, there is never a dull moment, and having the opportunity to contribute cross-functionally and make a notable difference with our customers, partners and my colleagues is what drives me and keeps me excited!  This, combined with the amazing people I work with both within Mitel and within our partner community brings me joy!”

Lana’s key channel-related accomplishments include the launch of a new Cloud Go-To-Market program for Mitel’s Americas partners and the continued evolution of the Global Partner Program.  Her contributions included the development of program requirements and benefits, weekly partner feedback sessions, and promotion of the programs out in the market. The guidance she provided drove multiple initiatives to support partners through the pandemic including adapting partner program assessment criteria to changing market conditions and introducing free, self-paced virtual technical training to help partners increase competencies without requiring travel. This year, Lana plans to take the updated CompTIA CAM 201 training for insights on business planning to support deepening engagement throughout the customer journey and learn more about how to better support Mitel partners. She had this advice for women entering the channel:

“The channel is an amazing place to be – take every opportunity along your journey to learn the unique elements of the various types of partners (Distribution, Resellers, Service Providers, etc.).  Knowledge of the channel spans industries, deep channel acumen will increase your relevance and marketability.  Build relationships outside of your company (directly with members of your channel community), join WOTC and participate in conferences!”

Jessica Maria, Group Director, Americas Partner Marketing

Jessica Maria is Mitel’s Group Director, Americas Partner Marketing, where she supports the company's partner first, people first approach. Jess joined Mitel in 2021 and was excited to be back in a partner-facing channel role where she would be leading partner marketing for North America and LATAM. In her role, she has delivered several new channel incentive programs and guided partner messaging through major strategic channel pivots. She was instrumental in building partner resources to ensure Mitel partners have the tools they need to meet customer demands and has also introduced new processes around identifying and maximizing ROI on ‘to partner’ and ‘through partner’ investments. Jess was key in pivoting offerings to continue to meet partners and customers where they are and want to be with the recent changes to Mitel’s cloud strategy and RingCentral partnership. She believes that awards like CRN’s WOTC are a great step in encouraging women to take on more responsibility and gain recognition for their skills in leadership:

“Any opportunity to showcase or celebrate diverse members of team (whether women or not) is valuable. The tech industry has long been male-dominated, but over the course of my career I have seen more and more women step into roles within the industry and grow into leadership positions. I hope that awards like this motivate other women to pursue careers in tech, as there are so many paths that one can take.”

In the past year, Jess has worked to build our channel business by attaching data to partner marketing efforts, enforcing data driven decisions, and, above all else, maintaining a partner-first mindset. She values flexibility, patience, and a strategic mindset as the traits that have made her and her team successful. Jess has garnered an immense level of respect from industry peers and friends and is part of Chief, a membership group designed to put women in positions of leadership and keep them there. She had this to say about being a female leader in a male-dominated industry:

“On one hand, I try not to focus on it. While I have experienced sexism and condescension in my career, I have also experienced equity, respect, and tremendous support. For me, it’s about listening to, elevating, and celebrating diverse perspectives. I feel passionate about moving beyond lip service and setting targets around DEI, women in leadership, and development for diverse colleagues and candidates. I believe that, at the end of the day, competency and accountability are what matters.”

Sara Wilde, Senior Channel Marketing Manager

Sara Wilde is a Senior Channel Marketing Manager with over 20 years of industry experience at various companies within the tech industry, holding business development and marketing roles within each of these organizations. In her role with Mitel, she leads the marketing strategy and execution for distributors and service providers and has a proven track record of creating and executing on business and marketing strategy, programs, and promotions. Sara has a deep understanding of the channel and has developed strategies to drive engagement with partners, enabling them to confidently market and sell Mitel solutions. She is a creative go-er and do-er who values positive mindsets and collaborating with other people, whether that be peers or partners.

“I am very humbled to receive this award doing something I truly love doing. Creating programs and events that support the growth of our partners are some of the things I am most proud of in my career at Mitel.”

Over the past year, Sara has led the marketing strategy and execution for Mitel distributors and service providers, introduced a new funding program to assist distributors and their partners expand their offerings and increase demand, hosted both distributer and partner events to educate on everything Mitel, and assisted with content and execution of Mitel virtual partner events. She is a receiver of the Mitel Circle of Excellence Award, which is a program that recognizes, motivates, and rewards employees demonstrating remarkable on-the-job excellence. In the future, Sara hopes to create a marketing hub for partners to utilize campaign assets to customize for demand generation and continue to increase Mitel’s brand recognition as the leader in the unified communications market. She gave this advice for women striving to achieve recognition and be successful in the channel:

“I’ve been very lucky to have wonderful women mentors throughout my career.  I would highly recommend seeking out mentors on a regular basis, not only those within your organization, but also some outside your organization.  Nine times out of ten, the woman you ask will be thrilled and happy to help.”

We applaud all six of these women for their wonderful accomplishments and are so proud to have such talented leaders on our team. As Daren Finney, Senior VP of Global Channels and 2022 CRN Channel Chief said:

“We are so fortunate to have an amazing team who routinely go above and beyond to support our channel partners. Sue, Misty, Fiona, Lana, Jessica, and Sara all embody Mitel’s commitment to winning by fostering the close, collaborative relationships we enjoy with our channel partners and distributors. To have six talented leaders make this year’s list is a true testament to Mitel’s high level of talent and experience, and I know I speak for the leadership team when I say how thankful we are for their dedication.”

If you’d like to see our CRN WOTC profiles on the CRN website, you can find them here

Avery Huffman

Avery Huffman

Social Media and Content Specialist

Avery Huffman is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, majoring in Public Relations and Corporate Communication. She enjoys writing and telling meaningful stories and creating interesting internal and external content.

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