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Champions for Growth: Secure your future with IBM skills and experience

In the age of the next-generation ecosystem, a business’s ability to work collaboratively with suppliers, partners and peers can make the difference between success and failure. Enterprises are increasingly interdependent when it comes to creating and delivering value, and that same interdependence is enabling the transfer of skills between enterprises in exciting new ways.

The IBM Champions for Growth program enables our top-performing people to take their IBM knowledge and experiences to help key players in our ecosystem. There, they are able to expand their skills and develop their careers by working directly for our Business Partners and clients for a previously agreed-upon timeframe.

For IBM Business Partners, that means they get unparalleled access to IBM expertise via IBMers themselves. As a result, when a partner organization is considering a move into a new market or building a new opportunity around IBM technology, they can temporarily hire one or more IBMers to help them do just that.

Three examples of IBM Champions for Growth in action

Sam Hector is presently the Business Development Manager at Arrow UK. He initially joined IBM as a seller in 2013. In a recent businesspartnervoices.com story, Hector described how two years later he joined the IBM Business Partner Portal under the Champions for Growth program. Since then, he moved to Arrow and has now been there for almost three years, helping to grow its ecosystem of IBM Security Business Partners.

Elsewhere, IBM Business Partner Persistent wanted to expand into the Internet of Things (IoT) market. A team of IBM Watson IoT specialists was placed at Persistent at the end of 2017, and that team is now building a joint business between IBM and Persistent.

And finally, I want to tell you about Grégoire Markesis, who leads the IBM Partner Ecosystem team in Belgium and Luxembourg. Prior to this role, he worked at Avnet under the Champions for Growth program for a period of three years as a member of the Benelux Management Team and later managing Avnet’s IBM Hyper Growth Initiative. Markesis says this experience gave him the “outside view” of IBM and its ecosystem—an invaluable experience that serves him well in his current role.

These are just three examples of the thousands of IBMers who have been injected into our Partner Ecosystem since we launched Champions for Growth in 2002. While many of those IBMers have gone on to make their move permanent by staying at the Business Partner firm, many more return to a role at IBM with the very valuable experience of having worked for a medium-sized company. They then return with the added industry skills required to succeed in that Business Partner’s market. And of unique value to us at IBM, they also return with the first-hand experience of how IBM is perceived from the outside looking in.

Demand for skills and experience

Of course, in the current, ever-changing world in which IBM and its Business Partners exist, the demand for skilled and experienced IBMers is high. If you are interested in finding out about IBM Champions for Growth and how we can help explore new opportunities with your enterprise, just let us know; please visit our PartnerWorld page to learn how to get started with IBM Champions for Growth.

Jan Van der Burght
Champions for Growth Leader, Europe and Benelux

Jan Van der Burght is the IBM Champions for Growth Leader for Europe and Benelux. Specializing in B2B marketing, Jan has focused his expertise on interactive and channel marketing. As leader of IBM’s Champions for Growth program in Europe, he and his team identify opportunities to assign IBMers to interesting opportunities for growing IBM business with our Business Partners.

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1 Comment

  1. eflerkl@de.ibm.com'

    Klaus Efler

    Great story. Champions for Growth is an excellent program to work collaboratively and trustfully with our suppliers and Business Partners.


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