Premier 100 Women Winners Surmount Humungous Odds

By ChannelWorld Jun 26th 2014
Premier 100 Women Winners Surmount Humungous Odds
This year's edition of ChannelWorld Premier 100 Awards ceremony for enterprise channels included Anita Jain, Anuradha Makhija, Nandita Singgha, and Ratna Singh--the highest number of women winners in the Awards' six-year history.

Victory and recognition, when it comes, is sweet and to be savored.

The ChannelWorld Premier 100 Awards had multiple takeaways, the most heartening among them being a stronger female presence in the audience.

In the male dominated top echelons of management, it becomes incessantly difficult for a woman to carve out a space in the constellation of CEOs,MDs and the likes.

Ratna Singh

The female awardees at this year’s awards feel strongly about the dominant role by women entrepreneurs at the top across the channel companies. “I feel privileged and recognized finally after many years of dedicated hard work towards our success,” says Ratna Singh, COO at Jainam Technologies. 

From facing acceptance issues to battling notions of leading a technology business company, these women have broken down these stereotypes.

Mumbai headquartered One Networks won Premier 100 last year too. Winning two times in a row amongst most channel companies driven by males was a great achievement for its founder Anuradha Makhija. “While relations with our enterprise clients have been healthy and strong over the years, winning Premier 100 award has given a major boost to the company image,” says Anuradha Makhija, managing director at One Networks.

Anuradha Makhija

The awards gives the company more recognition in the industry, a fact, these women agree help them strengthen their case. “Awards and other such recognition go a long way in helping us build a brand. When an independent organization which does not have any vested interest recognizes our innovation and growth, it validates our credentials,” agrees Anita Jain, MD at Trident Information Systems, a company that has won the ChannelWorld Premier 100 Awards in 2012, 2013 and again this year.

Singh had her moment of glory - twice over- to receive Security Special Award besides Premier 100 award at the event. Jainam Technologies was selected as top five security channel companies of 2014.

“If you are intelligent and well-focused with deep knowledge about technology, people and industry at large will respect you. And this will only help your business grow to greater heights,” comments Nandita Singgha, managing director of Total Presentation Devices. The company won its maiden Premier 100 award.

“Our team wants to excel more (after the award) than before as I keep them motivated always with newer leadership techniques and latest technology trends to keep them focused on their professional goals, says Anuradha Makhija.

Challenging the Hurdles

Women entrepreneurs face a host of stiff challenges in a male dominated world and IT domain is no different. The gender divides are however breaking down across the corporate world with the emergence of a much even level field.

Nandita

“The first hurdle is generally from the family. More often than not, they are reluctant to allow a woman to venture into the big business world. Being a woman entrepreneur is tough, says Singgha. In a patriarchal society like India, the overall business challenges and expectations of the family from a woman are overwhelming, states Jain.

Any business takes a decade of dedicated focus to be top-of-the-notch in the competitive world. The funds becomes essential over a time and financial institutions are rarely of much help. “Collecting the seed capital is easier said than done. Essentially, it is not a woman friendly environment in this aspect,” comments Anita Jain.

The first reaction of a client meeting a woman leader is one of surprise. “And if it’s a first generation entrepreneur, the curiosity factor increases multifold,” says Nandita Singgha who experiences that reception amongst peers till date.

Anita Jain

Bureaucratic hurdles and red tapism can get severe for women entrepreneurs too. As she aptly states, “The entire process from incorporating a business to getting clearances to finally starting operations is a daunting task.”

Nandita laments a bit, “There is hardly any support for a woman entrepreneur in India, she did however, receive significant amount of support and encouragement in USA, Australia and Israel among other parts of the globe.”

The next question faced by women entrepreneurs is, are you in the family business? says Nandita, founder of Total Presentation Devices, a pioneer of video conferencing solutions in India.

“If there are women at the top positions in a technology organisation, why not recognize them for their efforts?” asks Ratna Singh, COO at Jainam Technologies.

The point however remains—there might be few but extremely ingenious women entrepreneurs building great partner organisations in the technology industry.

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