As Denali has ramped up its end-to-end secured mobile device management subscription service for customers, Denali CEO Majdi "Mike" Daher attributes the company's success to an ability to "think like" and then "be the customer."
"Our philosophy is very simple: We are customer driven," said Daher, who started at Denali Advanced Integration 21 years ago with his brothers, building it into one of the most respected SP500 companies in the country. "We make sure that everything we do is centered around a customer gap, challenge or opportunity. You have to understand the problem from a business perspective and then the technology follows."
Many companies make the mistake of leading with technology first rather than focusing squarely on the business problem, said Daher. "I always say think like the customer thinks," he says. "The customer does not care about buying a tablet or a server or a network. That is not what they are about. Their existence is about serving their customers. Technology is an enabler. We have to think like the customer."
Daher said the exploding mobile device management market was a natural for Denali, with large enterprise customers scrambling to provide mobile devices and services for an increasingly mobile workforce. "IT [departments] are getting pressure from their users who want to be outside the four walls to be able to do their work," he said. "That is a business problem. It is not a technology problem. The business needs to solve it so employees can do their job."
Denali's privately held, family owned status has enabled the company to make big investments like the Plano, Texas, facility as it has moved through transformations to provide enterprise subscription services, said Daher. "We are blessed that we have the ability to make those kind of decisions," he said. "We don't have shareholders. We have a long-term vision. Anything that we do has a three-year ROI [return on investment]."
The Plano facility is a coming of age of sorts for Denali, which has gone through a process that Daher refers to as "SET" (survive, evolve and transform). That SET process has changed the character of Denali from a midmarket infrastructure provider to a global provider of enterprise mobility and cloud services with a new consultative enterprise-focused sales force that has over 150 years of enterprise experience.
Denali has been on the ground doing business in Texas since 2010, quietly setting the stage for the new facility, said Daher. "We have been here working with big companies," he said. "Most people didn't know it. But, we are already delivering to our customers. We have built this facility from the ground up for mobile devices."
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