Reconsider how you have been attempting to solve custom problems: That’s the message to partners from Ingram Micro global CEO Alain Monié and exec team.
The head of one of the world’s largest distributors used his opening address at Ingram Micro’s ONE Experience virtual conference yesterday to encourage partners to stay vigilant when it comes to customer needs in a post-pandemic world.
“Clearly, this has been a year filled with tremendous challenges,” Alain Monié said. "The global pandemic, social unrest and natural disasters have affected every corner of the planet.
"You all have to adjust our businesses and work environments, while also making significant changes to our home and social life.
"But challenge brings the best of us, bringing surprisingly strong positive reactions, oftentimes better than we expected from others, but also from ourselves.
"And I believe that innovation, agility, but most of all, technology has become more important than ever.
"While many have seen robust demand for the solutions and services our companies provide much of this demand is coming from different ways of solving different problems. So yes, we're all adapting, and embracing a different future.
"Despite the challenges and changes, relationships, operations, collaboration, and teamwork all remain critical cornerstones of success. At Ingram, we are strong because of our people, and our partners. But remember, ultimately, it is what we accomplished together that really matters."
Monié said that Ingram and its partner community had helped keep the global economy operating during the coronavirus pandemic.
"I thank you for your partnership, and all the things we have done together to keep everyone working and help alleviate the pain of those businesses mostly focus."
He encouraged partners to “imagine what's coming next for industry and when we can do together”. Monié also put out a call for feedback from partners on where they were seeing future demand for solutions and services which were not being addressed.
“We have to face a cliff change in market dynamics. And many of these changes will remain for a long time,” he said.
He highlighted business continuity planning, colocation, work from home, networks and on premise versus off premise as areas which have seen a shift in thinking as a result of the pandemic.
He then posed a larger question, “has a will, the undeniable increase in work from home in the future impacted our diversity and inclusion status and endeavors?”
Ingram’s CEO said he did not have all the answers and used emphasised that finding them would be a journey Ingram and its partners would undertake together.
He concluded by saying one thing was certain. “If you don't have a view, chances are you'll miss something big.”
Ingram’s head of global technology solutions Paul Bay followed with the message that the distributor wanted to encourage partners to change the way they thought about themselves.
“My objective is to also get you thinking differently about the value you provide, and the value you can provide,” he said.
“As the future unfolds. What is value and how is it measured? It's not pricing, or what is bought or sold. It's about the worth of service and the experience around what is bought or sold.
“Worth, it's determined by the customer. I asked my team consciously put our customer in the middle of everything we do. To us, it's not about the transaction.
“You're a valued partner in the supply chain, transforming the way technology is delivered, and how its consumed. To be successful. We want to understand your end customers better, their business type, size, individual requirements, and who or what is influencing those decisions.”
The Australian experience
Ingram Micro’s Australian boss Tim Ament used his time to continue with the theme he had been focused on since stepping into his current role early in 2020.
“Partner like you have never partnered before,” Ament reiterated.
He encouraged partners to lean on the distributor when potential business presented itself which was outside the partner’s traditional skill set.
“Don’t say no to an opportunity, call Ingram,” Ament urged partners.
Ament said that partnering with local companies meant looking at ways the distie could do business differently.
“To some, it meant financial support and solutions. And to others, it meant going outside of the box to meet the unique challenges associated with the surgeon working and learning from home.”
Ament praised Ingram's local team and singled out staff in the distributor’s backend facilities.
“I also want to personally thank all of our employees in our Eastern Creek distribution center, who continually exceed the expectations of our customers, especially during the global pandemic, where they helped get essential technologies into the hands of the businesses and students who needed it most.”