Women in Technology | Anita Kukreja, IceWarp | ChannelDrive.in
As part of our special focus on profiling leading Women working in Technology – Anita Kukreja, Head – Marketing & Channels at IceWarp speaks with Zia Askari from ChannelDrive.in about her professional and personal journey so far and what success means to her.
How would you describe yourself?
I am a seasoned marketing professional with 18+ years of experience in marketing and channel domain. I am passionate about working in the technology industry and today it’s become like an extended family for me.
What are your personal priorities?
I believe in contributing to society at large.
Please share with us some of your personal milestones and their contributions towards developing your personality?
Getting the opportunity to work under the guidance of able leaders, who shaped me as a thorough professional that I am. They have contributed immensely to my core personality in terms of shaping my leadership skills as well as gain expertise in the domain that I work on.
More than anything else I have learned the value of humbleness. I have learned that great leaders possess the quality of being humble and that’s where the greatness lies.
How do you see yourself as a person? What are your three qualities that have helped you grow as a person and a professional?
I see myself as a team builder, innovator, and mentor.
As a person and as a professional the qualities that have helped me grow is Perseverance, Integrity & the right attitude.
Please share with us some of your hobbies and interests?
I am an avid reader, Reading helps me to grow and see different perspectives/aspects of life.
I am passionate about sketching and music. Indeed, music helps one to relax and sketching helps in bringing the intense side of me.
Please tell us something about your family? How has been their support in terms of helping you grow professionally?
I am married to Kamal, who is event management professional. We both are blessed with a son named Manit. I am fortunate enough to have a supportive family, who understand that work is an integral part of my identity.
I remember the time when my work demanded late working hours, it still does. Even there have been days when I have been away from family for a long time. But, it’s my family who never lost faith in me. I love the way my son and husband support me and give special treatment whenever I am back from work. And in turn, I reciprocate by spending quality time with them.
Daring to Dream
How do you define success? What is your mantra to succeed?
Success isn’t about how much money you make. It’s about the difference you make in people’s lives. Success comes to those who dare to dream, to people who truly want to succeed. It requires the right attitude.
How has been your professional journey so far? Please tell us about your various job profiles?
I started my journey with SecureSynergy, an Information Assurance Company. It was a startup in Information Security Domain. By far one of the best companies worked for with a wonderful team to work with. I was able to gain exposure in working with a startup, creating the brand, working out strategies and plans that are/were instrumental to the brand equity. While I shifted from there to my next destination, I was responsible for handling the Marketing for India & Middle East region.
I was always passionate about channel partners, so when I got a chance to explore my prior expertise of dealing with partners at SecureSynergy I joined Netmagic, now NTT Com-Netmagic and helped them create the channel ecosystem, a radical shift from being a direct company to being a partner-friendly organization. During my stint at Netmagic, I helped create the channel model & channel friendly policies.
Currently, I am working as the Head – Marketing & Channels at IceWarp, India since 2016. I am responsible for leading the channel initiatives and to create the marketing strategies, driving marketing operations and channel ecosystem. I also oversee the expansion of the business through strategic alliances and partnerships to stay ahead in the game. Being Head of Marketing & Channels, I also support the C-level executives with their duties and also work within the management team to maintain the collective work to a good standard.
When you look back in your career – what according to you can be termed as big turning points? How have these turning points helped you professionally?
My big turning point was definitely when I explored working more closely with Channel partners. For me Channel partners are core to the DNA of any IT OEM, they add immense value to the relationship with end customer. Working closely with partners gave me the requisite exposure and gain business acumen knowledge.
What are some of the challenges that you faced and overcome during your professional journey? How did you overcome these challenges?
I would say that life has not been hunky-dory in my professional journey. Challenges are a part of every individual’s life, it’s how you handle them, and in fact you emerge stronger with challenges. The learning outcome from each challenge has been worth at the end. This reminds me of the famous quote of Martin Luther King, Jr. “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
How do you see yourself five years from now? What are some of your big goals that you want to achieve?
Life is unpredictable, it is difficult to gauge five years from now but I definitely see myself contributing more to society in general – creating more jobs, contributing to social causes, mentoring the newcomers.
One of my biggest goals is to travel the world with my family & create more beautiful memories.