Dundas became Fuze’s director of North America channel sales a little more than a year ago. Before joining Fuze in 2015, he was national channel manager at EarthLink Business, which Windstream acquired, and senior director of channel at Nitel.
This month, Fuze was named to the 2019 Forbes Cloud 100, the definitive ranking of the top 100 private cloud companies in the world, for the fourth consecutive year.
Dundas credits his success with having a product that is “very seamless and very user-friendly.” Together with a top-notch channel program, it’s a great combination for partners looking to move customers to the cloud, he said.
Dundas is part of Channel Partners’ Top Gun 51, which recognizes a new generation of channel executives, those who build and execute programs in a way that drives partner, customer and supplier success.
The Top Gun 51 were recognized at Channel Partners Evolution in Washington, D.C.
In a Q&A with Channel Partners, Dundas talks about his experience in the channel and gives advice for future channel leaders.
Channel Partners: How did you first become involved in the channel? Was it part of your overall career plan?
J.P. Dundas: I began working in the channel before it became a core business vertical. While I was working in direct sales, I stumbled across a company that provides IT services and decided to pitch them on my product set, which was dynamically allocated T1s. As our relationship grew and the company began to introduce me to their customers to purchase the product set, I was hitting my numbers every month with just their referrals. This relationship forged the realization that I needed to move into the channel and continue to build upon experiences and relationships like these. Shortly after, I became a channel manager and the rest is history.
|We recently unveiled our “Top Gun 51,” a list of today’s channel executives who deserve recognition for building and executing programs in a way that drives partner, customer and supplier success.|
CP: Have you been responsible for building channel programs from the ground up? If so, how did your experience come into play in these processes?
JPD: At Fuze, this is the first time that I’ve built a channel program across North America with a team of this size. In the past, I’ve grown territories regionally and found success by working closely with my colleagues and leadership teams who supported the growth of my personal network and brand. I’ve found that building a successful channel takes time and patience as the best programs are ones that develop confidence in their partner base and deliver results on time.
CP: What have you learned most from your experience with the channel and partners?
JPD: Through my experience in the channel, I’ve learned that we are managing people and relationships. This means that no sale is more important than those two things. The channel is a small community, in which relationships and integrity are important. If you overpromise and underdeliver regularly, it will spread throughout and it will not reflect well on your personal or company’s brand.
CP: What are the components of a successful channel program? Are there things that used to work, but now don’t?
JPD: Staying in front of your partners is one of the most important aspects of building a channel. Partners have a lot of products and services that they can offer, so at the end of the day, you want your product to be the one they are thinking about. Getting your services in front of partners regularly allows them to …