Wang NZ carries on without a chief

Wang NZ carries on without a chief

Wang New Zealand is in the unusual position of management by committee which, it said when announcing its annual results recently, is working very smoothly.

The vendor has been without a chief executive officer since Doug Wilson resigned at the end of April and is unlikely to appoint another in the foreseeable future, until the acquisition of Blue Star Business Solutions, of which Wang is a part, from US Office Products, is finalised.

Wang, meantime, has been in the process of reworking its business model. Long-time industry identity Peter Dickinson, who recently joined the Wang management team, first as northern region client marketing manager, has been named national client marketing manager.

Dickinson became associated with CBA in 1992 after helping set up the New Zealand Software Exporters Association. He was general manager of the New Zealand CBA operation, becoming managing director for Australasia.

CBA had nearly 11,000 sites in New Zealand and Australia, commanding 25 per cent of the New Zealand market.

It was Wilson who talked him into joining Wang, he said.

"Doug and Anthony see a different client engagement model with Wang that's not based on product salespeople thrashing themselves to death across the market.

"The appeal to me was that Wang was a successful company that had grown ahead of the market and was profitable. I admired the way it had reinvented itself.

"The solutions area is where intellectual property is growing, and out of that will come the opportunity to do wider things."

Wang, he said, has done some clever things for individual companies which it may be able to take to the wider market over the next few years.

The go-to-market sales model of a few years ago has become inverted, he said. "If you want a commodity today you're not expecting a salesman on the doorstep selling a PC. Previously, account managers were selling products. Now, you have to have people working alongside the client to understand the outcomes of their particular business."

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