Prior to joining Red Hat, Victor Tsao served as global vice president and general manager for Big Data and Platform Division at SAP in Greater China. He has held several other leadership positions in the past, such as senior executive and general manager at leading technology companies, including IBM, AspenTech, Dell, i2, APC and Citrix. Victor brings in nearly 30 years of experience in driving hardware and software business, as well as consulting services and channel management.
We caught up with Victor to find out more about his interest in open source and Red Hat, as well as his thoughts on the current IT trends, and his insights about leadership and management.
Why did you choose to join Red Hat?
There were a couple of things that impressed me about Red Hat – the subscription business model, open source DNA, company values based on community and collaboration and Red Hat’s product portfolio stack.
Though I graduated as a chemical engineer, I was always interested in technology and this started with my early years at IBM, working on mainframe systems. My foray in learning technology continued with my career choices – I worked on supply chain software at i2 and later managed the virtualization business at Citrix, and big-data at SAP. All these companies were recognized for their leadership role in their business segments and so it was interesting to be part of their team and help contribute to their business. And when I look at Red Hat, I feel proud to be part of an organization who also has a leadership position and is singularly focused on collaborating with its customers and partners to address the dynamic business environment where we all compete.
The other important aspect about Red Hat that stands out is the company’s open culture and how associates across the world are passionate about it. The values of an open organization are very deeply rooted in the company and its culture. Employees take pride in the honing the values of transparency, collaboration and meritocracy.
What role do you think Red Hat and open source can play in the digital transformation of Chinese companies?
First of all, I’d like to highlight Red Hat’s growth story. We recently announced the Q4 and FY2018 results and shared that Red Hat’s annual revenue was USD 2.9 billion and this was the company’s 64th consecutive quarter of revenue growth. This is a very rare feat and indicates that open source is increasingly important for enterprise users.
We are also seeing that China is advocating open innovation and enterprises across industries are embracing open source to build a flexible and efficient next-generation platform. Red Hat has a full stack of products to meet user needs in cloud computing, containerization and AI.
Today, Red Hat is recognized as a leader in hybrid cloud and modern application deployment and I feel honored to lead Red Hat in China. With my team and the strong partner ecosystem we are well poised to provide open source solutions that assist Chinese companies in their journey towards digital transformation.
With nearly thirty years’ experience in the IT field, what do you think are the most important qualities for a good leader and manager?
All along, I have believed in the power of five words: integrity, focus, accountability, courage and teamwork.
Exemplify integrity - this is the premise and foundation of an authentic leader.
Be focused and fully committed in your work.
Be accountable and take ownership of your decisions.
Be courageous to admit mistakes, to solve problems and confront difficulties.
And lastly, believe in teamwork. You cannot win a war alone. Only by working together with the team, can one achieve maximum efficiency and be successful.
What are your key priorities for Red Hat China?
I put my focus on four thing, people, product, processes and partner ecosystem.
I believe in the value of open source and we have a strong opportunity to make open source mainstream and the default technology choice for all enterprises in the region. Factors like open innovation, collaboration and transparency are some of the key attributes that can help enterprises achieve digital transformation. I think the time has come for enterprises to make the change and move to open source.
About the author
Red Hat is the world’s leading provider of enterprise open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to deliver reliable and high-performing Linux, hybrid cloud, container, and Kubernetes technologies.