Carolyn Hewett, Head of Operations at O2 Wholesale says her firm is a believer in face-to-face engagement where every partner is given a dedicated partner manager to handle their account and 24/7 technical support.
Comms Business Magazine (CBM): How are you finding the market right now?
Calolyn Hewitt (CH): It’s busy! There is a lot going on but it is an exciting time as the appetite for digital services is increasing. Our job at O2 Wholesale is to enable our partners to provide a solid service to their customers through great connectivity.
CBM: What have been the biggest changes that have affected your market and your business over the period you have been in business?
CH: The playing field has changed with small business now having the opportunity to take on big business through the development and availability of tools and services previously only open to enterprise with big resource and deep pockets. I think it is a very positive thing for UK business.
CBM: Is gender an issue in our business?
CH: Like many markets the comms sector is male dominated. No, I don’t perceive it as a problem, in my experience skills and expertise count for more than if you wear a skirt or not! O2 is very supportive of women and we have some great role models such as Eva Castillo our European Chairwoman and CEO, along with Claire Darley who heads up SMB Sales who are both very active in promoting women in business.
CBM: Who are your business heroes/role models and why?
CH: It’s the people who spot an opportunity and go for it. That’s how Wiggle.co.uk, my triathlon sponsor, moved from being a bike accessory catalogue business to an online company worth £180m. They kept to their original values of providing great products and customer support but spotted the opportunity early on that ecommerce offered.
CBM: What is the biggest business challenge you face right now and why. How do you expect to rise above this challenge?
CH: Making use of the opportunities that are being presented in a timely way to get ahead of the curve. The industry is moving along at lightening pace and to stay competitive and support our partners we need to be at the forefront of industry developments. The key for us is keeping close relationships with our partners and understanding where their business is going and how we can contribute to their success.
2013 is an exciting year for us; we are looking at a variety of new services to offer our partners. Personally I feel very fortunate to be a part of such a fast paced industry where there is opportunity to make a difference.