Five minute interview: Stephen Bedford, Cognisec

In the latest five minute interview MicroScope hears from Stephen Bedford who runs file sharing and cloud access layer Cognisec

What do you do for a living?

I run Cognisec Limited – a fresh entrant into the File Sharing and Cloud Access space.


Why are you the right person for this job?

I’d like to think that I have the knowledge and the ability to help create a business that provides the tools that makes people more effective in their corporate life.

My 20 plus years of experience working with some great global companies (Motorola, Glaxo-Wellcome (now GSK), Roland UK, Hydron to name a few) has provided me with a first-hand understanding of the importance of simplifying the use of IT for people across whole organisations and often in very diverse industrial sectors.


What gets you up in the morning?

My 22 year old (at 5:30).

I’d also have to add: To be able to come to work everyday knowing that we’re building a solution that genuinely makes work life easier for everyone.  The modern workplace is changing dramatically, and I’m proud to be at a company at the forefront of that technological and cultural shift.


Who helped you get to where you are today?

My parents without a doubt, but also some great bosses that I have worked for the past 20+ years.


What is the best or worst business advice you have received and from whom?

The best – “as long as you know 1% more than your audience you’ll be great at pre-sales” – a former pre-sales colleague

The worst – “Just wing it – you’ll be fine” a former pre-sales colleague


What advice would you give to someone starting out today in IT?

Never stand still, be inquisitive and most of all always keep it simple – think – “if a non-technical person was using that would they be happy with it?”


Will Windows 8 be the new XP, or the new Vista?

It will be the next Windows 8 – it has a place on its own – just like Marmite.


What does the next five years hold for the channel?

Lots and lots of change. Reseller models are being thrown up in the air with the onset of cloud services. Everybody is scrambling to determine where they can make money. A lot more focus on services as the opportunity to make good margin on product diminishes – but I think this will only be temporary as the cloud players mature their own goto market strategies.


Tell us something most people do not know about you

I am secretly rather fat.


What goal do you have to achieve before you die, and why?

Have my picture taken holding the Champions League trophy –with West Ham United engraved on it. Or take a walk on the moon – which is much more likely.

Because I like West Ham – and the Clangers.


What is the best book you've ever read?

One Man's Attempt to Explain the Big Stuff [Marcus Chown


And the worst film you’ve ever seen?

Frogs – quite easily the worse but I had to watch it to the very end.


What would be your Desert Island MP3s?

Happy Mondays, Stone Roses, The Farm, Now that’s what I call music Volume 1, something from Calvin Harris and Rudimental.


What temptation can you not resist?

Black Sambuca


What was your first car and how does it compare with what you drive now?

A brown V Reg 1000cc Mini – it was a lot slower than the one I have now although it had a nice cassette player.


Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with? Why, what did they do?

Nigel Farage – just for being Nigel Farage.


If you could be any animal for a day, what would you be and why?

A Golden Eagle  - just always thought it would be great to be a Golden Eagle as a kid.


If you could represent Great Britain (or your home country) at one event in the 2012 Olympics, which would you choose and why?

Decathlon, general all round ability is a very desirable trait. Daley Thomson is one of my all-time sporting heroes.


If you were facing awesome peril and impossible odds, which real or fictional person would you most want on your side and why?

Superman clearly – he can fly round the earth and turn back time. I’ve seen it done.


And finally, a grizzly bear and a silverback gorilla are getting ready for a no-holds-barred rumble. Who is your money on and why?

You never seen King Kong? – The silverback every time.

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