What was your first job, and how did you get into IT?
My very first job was selling sofa beds on a market stall. I got into IT after answering an advert in the Sunday Times for graduates to join CA Technologies.
Planes, trains or automobiles?
As early as I can remember, I have been obsessed with cars and motor sport, so for me it would have to be automobiles.
What never fails to make you laugh?
My kids. They keep me sane, and watching
them argue - and what they argue about - makes me laugh and wish that was all I had to worry about.
If someone shrank you to the size of a pencil and put you in a blender, how would you get out?
An interesting question with only one feasible answer, to my mind: I would wait until someone flicked the switch and then get poured out!
What is the most important trend to follow in 2014?
Cloud. It will change everything. Cloud services just make so much sense. I think the days of on-premise are numbered for a great many applications.
What would you like to have as your epitaph?
Well, my wife says I am a hypochondriac so I suppose "I told you I was ill" would be appropriate.
Are IT skills shortages best filled by on-the-job training or formal education (such as at a university)?
I think it's a combination. I would hire a veteran sales guy whether he had a degree or not; I would be more interested in his track record. If I were looking at a junior, I would want someone with a degree for sure.
I think it's important to have a rounded education, and if you are working more on the technical side, a technical education is good. For positions such as sales I think it's debatable. Overall though, I think the most important thing is a good track record.
Your closest near-death experience?
I once drove through a dry stone wall at about 50mph in the Cotswolds. That was quite an experience, to say the least.
What one thing do you miss from being a kid that you no longer do or can do?
Riding a BMX on a half-pipe. I used to spend all my free time riding my bike as a kid. Unfortunately, I no longer have the time or the ability to do so.
What are the characteristics of the perfect channel partner?
Partnerships are built by people and based on trust. Being able to trust a partner so they will do what they say they will, when they say they will, is extremely important. I also think they need to understand the different business needs of their partner organisation.
What are you reading?
Memories of the Falklands, a collection of stories from people involved in the Falklands war, from islanders to servicemen and women to politicians. I have a history degree and find myself only ever reading factual books.
How do you try to cheer yourself up when you're feeling down?
I ride my bike through the Surrey hills, an amazingly beautiful part of the world, which never fails to cheer me up.
If you had your time again, what would be your next choice of career?
I would definitely be a rock star; being in a band must be ace.
Phil Turner is EMEA vice president at Okta
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