Ronnie Oldham
Whitehill Technologies Account Manager 

    After a couple of productive and satisfying years with Adams Globalization, I wanted to find a position that offered more opportunity,  primarily in terms of income.  Adams had given me the opportunity to wear more hats and carry more responsibility, but I wasn't coming close to the kind of income I had selling software.  In October 2004, I accepted a position with Whitehill Technologies.  The company is based in New Brunswick, Canada, though I worked from my home in Austin, Texas.  Several things about Whitehill impressed me enough to accept their offer.  First, the commission rate was substantially higher than industry averages.  They have great technology and I was confident in its marketability.  The management team really seemed to be top notch and they seemed to take pride in their commitment to their employees.  They even flew my wife to New Brunswick for the company Christmas party.  Most importantly, I was to be part of a team that could radically change the company and result in tremendous growth.  I wasn't part of their existing legal or insurance sales verticals or the channel sales organization.  Instead, I worked directly for the VP of Marketing and Bus. Dev.  The plan was to sell Whitehill's <XML> Transport technology to users of Computer Associates' output management products, primarily users of CA View for the mainframe.  We were successful enough at building relationships throughout CA and at developing a substantial pipeline of opportunities that CA agreed to be a reseller of Whitehill products worldwide.  By March of 2005, CA had signed an agreement which positioned <XML> Transport as a standard CA product with part numbers and standard commissions for sales execs.  CA was to assume much of the marketing responsibility and my role was to become more of a channel sales manager supporting the CA effort. 

    Unfortunately, on the first Monday morning in April without any warning whatsoever I received the call.  They said the company had reorganized the sales organization and that my position had been eliminated.  They offered no further explanation and no severance, other than the two weeks pay commonly required for a notice period.  I can understand business decisions or even being the victim of my own success, but they could have done it with a little class.  After all, I thought we were all friends and mutually respected teammates and there was never any indication to the contrary.  In fact, only two weeks prior my boss told me that I was doing everything right and not to change anything.  Even though I wasn't the only Whitehill employee terminated, I was shocked and disappointed. I had been a productive and loyal employee that was impressed by the technology, that believed in the vision and was committed to helping make it happen, yet there was never any discussion of whether I was willing to relocate and could benefit the company in another capacity.  I have never left a job feeling so used and so foolish.  Nevertheless, I figure it is better to learn this now rather than after investing years with the company. 

  

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Copyright Ronnie Oldham 1999.  All rights reserved.
Revised: April 01, 2011.

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