Developing her communication skills in her mother’s hair salon has paid dividends for Veeam AN/Z's channel sales leader Janet Docherty during her career in the IT industry.
Emigrating from Scotland to Australia to help her husband pursue his football career, Docherty originally started as an administrator at Tech Pacific before building herself up to become a regional channel lead.
What was your first job?
When I was 13, my mum ran a salon from our house in Scotland and I was her hairdressing assistant. I would come home from school, help shampoo or prepare the rollers and book clients in for their next appointments. Having the opportunity to meet people from all walks of life from an early age gave me the soft skills I needed to communicate effectively in the channel environment many years later.
Another great lesson I learnt from my first job was how to have difficult conversations. Delivering honest feedback in the salon is directly transferable to the working world, and is a task that developed my ability to empathise and offer effective solutions.
How did you get started in the IT industry and progress to where you are today?
I initially emigrated from Scotland to support my husband’s football career, and at the time I never imagined it would be the start of an amazing career of my own. Once we arrived, I started working in a local restaurant where I met someone who would later come to be a colleague of mine at Tech Pacific. I was asked if I’d be interested in an order entry role, and despite my lack of industry experience at the time, I couldn’t wait to apply for the position. My contact lent me a keyboard to practice my typing skills on and I was away.
I got the job and moved my way up from order entry to running the commercial team in a matter of nine years.
What are some of your plans for Veeam in the coming months?
One of my key priorities for Veeam in 2021 is evolving our already very popular ProPartner program to help further stimulate partner loyalty and growth. I’m currently working with Veeam’s key alliances to see how we can generate the best outcomes for our partners. This means changes to benefits and bigger and better ideas.
What has been your biggest business mistake, and the lessons you've learnt from that experience?
My biggest mistake was not believing in myself earlier. I should have trusted my instincts and pursued the goals that deep down I knew I was capable of achieving.
I’m proud of where I am now, but for anyone taking a similar route today, my advice would be ‘just go for it'.
What are some of your ambitions - personally and professionally?
From a professional perspective, my main goal is to excel in the role I’m in and drive impactful, positive change for both Veeam and the Australian channel. From admin to sales to channel, I have loved having exposure to so many different parts of this fantastic industry over the years, and I’m keen to learn more and grow further in my career.
From a personal perspective, my priority is to stay grounded and be the best mum and wife I can be.
What has been the best piece of advice you've ever received?
From my mum – “Always be true to yourself.”
From my previous manager “Always work in the role you want to do next.”