This week, Westcon Group managing director, David Henderson announced his resignation.
In the short-term Westcon Group executive vice-president Asia-Pacific, Wendy O'Keeffe, will assume responsibility until a replacement is found.
Henderson told ARN his decision to leave was made over a period of time.
“It was never a surprise to me. My assignment at Westcon had a time frame on it and that was my choice,” Henderson said.
“There were a number of tasks to complete like create a vision for the business, create a management team, grow the business and re-position it. I've accomplished 95 per cent of it.
“As a manager, you've got to know when you’re the best person adding value and there comes a time where the maturity of the business takes on another perspective. I’m good at transformational leadership and once the transformation is complete there’s probably better people that can take it to the next phase.”
Henderson has had a fairly long run in the IT industry, previously holding down roles with EMC, Tech Pacific, 3 Com, AST Computer Systems, Toshiba and 3M.
Henderson couldn’t recall a time where there has been so much change in the channel.
“It doesn’t matter where you are in IT today, you’ve got some big decisions to make because everything is changing under your feet,” he said. “There’s a power shift towards the channel as brand selection is now being made by channel partners and not end users, and a lot of vendors are slow to pick that up. Service providers like Telstra and AAPT are becoming more aggressive in taking marketshare in this space because they’ve got the cheque books and infrastructure.
“Users are engaging differently with channel partners in the form of taking services as opposed to procurement and distribution has to scramble as to where it can continue to add value.”
Henderson said the channel has been put in far stronger position of negotiation than ever before.
“Every vendor is trying to work out how to embrace the channel to gain more marketshare and growth,” he said. “There’s an upheaval going on in the market that presents opportunities for the channel to leverage their negotiation strength.”
What are some the key lessons during his extensive time in the IT industry? Henderson said to be generous and respect everyone in this small, tight-knit community, and have the maturity to understand when someone else can do your job better than you.
“It allows you embrace your task with enthusiasm and passion, but when it stops being that, have the maturity to say I’m going to move on and have this passion again,” he said.
Where will Henderson go from here? Well he’s had four job offers so far, but insists he’ll take his time. But you can count on him showing up in the IT industry.
“I don’t know what's in front of me, but that’s what makes me excited,” he said.